Find special schools

Find special schools and learn who they are right for

You must have an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP) to apply to a special school.

Who can apply to a special school

To request a special school placement, the child must have:

  • an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP)
  • severe and complex special educational needs

Most children with an EHCP go to a mainstream setting. Special schools meet the needs of children and young people with the most complex needs.

What special schools can help with

Special schools can meet a range of needs, including:

  • communication and interaction
  • cognition and learning
  • social, emotional and mental health
  • sensory and physical needs

Some schools specialise within these categories. For example, autism, blindness and vision loss, or speech, language and communication needs.

We place children in Essex special schools, not Independent or non-maintained schools. Independents are only used if there are no available spaces at an Essex special school.

If you think this could help your child, find out how to request a place at a special school.

If you are not eligible to apply for a special school

If a special school is not the right option for your child right now, there is lots of other support are available. 

This includes: