Skip to main content

SEN inclusion funding

In Norfolk, we expect all children aged 0-5 to be provided with a standard Universal Offer when accessing education and childcare from providers offering early years provision. For some children they may also benefit from some additional support, which initially will be organised by the provider by optimising existing provision resources and other non-financial support currently available from the Local Offer and other external sources.

Where necessary the provider may seek funding to address the individual needs of children with SEN. The purpose of this funding is to provide additional financial assistance for providers of Early Years to ensure the inclusion of children 0-5 where there is an identified need that is "additional to" and "different from".

Local authorities and providers must also ensure that they meet their duties under the Equality Act 2010 and take full account of the SEND Code of Practice 0-25 and the Local Authority’s Funding Agreement when offering early years provision.


There are three funding applications available –

  • EHCP (agreed or issued plan)
  • SEN Inclusion Fund
  • Exceptional

Before applying for funding, it is important to read the guidance on the form and where required use the banding descriptors:

All applications (the excel document) must be submitted securely via email to by the stated deadline.

Funding Available


This funding is available to all children in receipt of early education with an issued or agreed Education, Health and Care Plan.  The application can be submitted as soon as families have been notified that a plan has been agreed.  It is only necessary to submit the application once.  Funding will be paid automatically each claim period once a claim for early education has been received and processed.

To apply for this funding, a one-off application for an individual child must be submitted.


SEN Inclusion Fund

This funding is available to all children in receipt of early education and do not have an issued or agreed EHCP.  An application can be submitted termly for those children where there is an identified need that is “additional to and different from”.  Funding will be paid once a claim for early education has been processed AND panel has agreed that the information provided to describe need compares with the selected age and banding for each area of development.

To apply for this funding, a termly application must be submitted that details each child’s need by identifying the banding for each area of development and answering a number of statements.



This funding is available to children aged 0 to 3, who are not eligible for early education and have a medical and/or complex need.  Children will be banded at least 4 in all areas of development and their identified age of development will be significantly less than their peers.

To apply, at least three of the following must also be met –

  • The provider will always adapt the environment and/or activities when the child attends
  • The provider will individualise support to meet the child’s needs
  • An EHCP assessment has been requested
  • Bespoke training has taken place to prepare for the child’s start date
  • A complex medical care plan is in place with daily monitoring

To apply for this funding, an application can be submitted termly.

Application type –

Panel Outcome

Panel will review all applications and may contact the applicant to request further information. 

Applications will be either agreed or declined.  If the outcome is Decline, the reason will be at least one of the following –

  • Applications are incomplete or an incorrect version was submitted
  • Early education claims have not been submitted or funded (SENIF or EHCP applications)
  • Children are recorded on the wrong application form
  • The needs of the child are not complex or medical (Exception application)
  • The needs of the child are banded “universal” for all areas of development

Please note there is a strict deadline policy in place.

More information

For further guidance please email or contact  the Early Years Advice Line on 01603 222300 - option 3.