Heads Up 15 September 2023


Important Top Up Funding update: Implementation of phase two and support available for settings

Following a successful start to the implementation of the new Top up Funding Matrix and with over 180 SENCos and school leaders attending awareness sessions in June and July, we will now be rolling out the new Top Up Funding Matrix across all mainstream and special school settings in Warwickshire through a phased implementation plan.

For those who have not yet attended an awareness session, we are holding four additional sessions in September and will also be offering Super User Surgeries to support settings with implementing these changes – please see details below.

The new funding matrix aims to determine the right level of top-up funding at the right time, to enable education settings to make appropriate provision for pupils with a special educational need and/or disability (SEND). This will support schools to improve their inclusive learning environments and give children and young people with Education, Health and Care Plans (EHCPs) the opportunity to be educated within their local mainstream setting, in line with the SEND Code of Practice.

The new matrix will provide a simplified funding process, increased transparency and greater financial sustainability to education settings to improve placement stability and support recruitment and retention.

This new process will enable a significant reduction in the number of Costed Individual Education Plans (IEPs) being submitted, meaning settings will receive funding quicker and SENCos will have more time to focus on other priorities.

From September 2023 to February 2024, all children with EHCPs within the following groups will be transferred onto the new Top Up Funding Matrix: 

  • All draft EHCPs issued on or after 1 September 2023
  • Year 6-7 transfers. In line with their annual reviews being submitted, current year 6's will be funded according to the new matrix from September 2024. Funding allocations will be released along with their final plans by 15 February 2024.
  • Nursery to reception transfers. Those starting reception in September 2023 and not on the new matrix will be funded according to the new matrix from September 2024.

Additional awareness sessions for SENCos and school leaders

If you have not attended one of the previous awareness sessions, you are encouraged to register for one of the additional sessions below. The purpose of the session is to provide an overview of the aims and principles of the matrix, demonstrate how this will work in practice and provide an opportunity to ask any questions. 

If you would like to attend a session and have not received an invitation, please email SENDchange@warwickshire.gov.uk

All sessions are virtual:

  • Monday 18 September, 9am - 9.30am
  • Wednesday 20 September, 4pm - 4.30pm
  • Monday 25 September 9.30 – 10am
  • Tuesday 26 September 12-12.30pm

Super User Surgeries

From Monday 20 September 2023, we welcome SENCOs and/or education leaders to book onto a Super User Surgery to discuss any specific transfers onto the new matrix.

The online surgeries will run weekly on Thursdays from 2pm – 3pm, with 20-minute slots available to book. You can book a slot now using the following link: 'Super User' Surgery Booking Form

You Said: We Did – FAQs

Following feedback from the initial awareness sessions held in June and July, a list of FAQs has now been compiled. You can view the FAQs here

Being transparent with parents and carers about the allocation of funding to support SEND in schools and settings is important, so we are also working with Warwickshire Parent Carer Voice to review the information on our Local Offer webpages and will be updating this in due course.

During the implementation of the new matrix, we will be carrying out in-depth reviews every half term to evaluate progress, impact and sustainability, as well as any feedback we receive. The next half-termly review will take place in October 2023. We are committed to working in partnership with you to deliver the best possible outcomes for our children and young people and will be keeping you updated throughout the duration of the project.

We welcome all questions, feedback and suggestions, please send these to SENDchange@warwickshire.gov.uk.


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