The ALN Act began to be implemented in September 2021, and children and young people are gradually being moved from the old SEN system to the new ALN system. RCT has already started to take on new duties relating to young people with ALN in Post-16 education and training.
Until now, Welsh Government has been responsible for making decisions about post-16 provision for young people aged 16-25 whose education and training needs cannot be met via mainstream provision and who require a specialist placement. This responsibility will transfer gradually to local authorities, who are best placed to make these decisions and means that RCT LA will work in collaboration with a range of partners to develop and strengthen post-16 specialist ALN provision.
Most young people with complex ALN will be able to progress from school to a programme of study at their local further education colleges (FEIs). For some young people with complex ALN, a FEI may be unable to meet their needs, and their additional learning provision will be identified as a specialist further education college. The ALN legislation refers to specialist further education colleges as independent specialist post-16 institutions (ISPIs).
From September 2022, RCT Local Authority will make decisions regarding placements at ISPIs for young people in the ALN system who are looking to be placed within the 2023/24 academic year. (Welsh Government will continue to secure and fund specialist post-16 placements for those young people who have not yet been moved to the ALN system).
The Minister for Education and Welsh Language has announced the decision to extend the implementation period of the ALN Act from three years to four years. This means that children who were due to move to the ALN system between September 2023 and August 2024, will now move to the ALN system between September 2023 and August 2025. The rights for children, and their parents, to request a child moves to the ALN system is unaffected – meaning that children who want to move to the ALN system can still ask to do so.
Further information available in this letter from Hannah Wharf – Deputy Director Support for Learners.
Schools and Careers Wales will continue to support young people and their family to explore options and identify progression routes at this time.
If you have a query about this change in process for Post-16 provision, please contact: