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What do all of the abbreviations mean?

We appreciate that SEND is full of jargon so we hope the following section will support you.


A&E - Accident & Emergency Department
Acute - The short term, crisis phase of an illness
ADD - Attention Deficit Disorder. (Also see ADHD)
ADHD - Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder
ASD - Autistic Spectrum Disorder
BESD – Behavioural, Emotional and Social Difficulties
CAMHS - Child & Adolescent Mental Health Service
CAF - Common Assessment Framework
EHA – Early Help Assessment
Complex - More than one significant problem
CP - Child protection
Diagnosis - Identification of a disease or condition by looking at the symptoms
DLA - Disability Living Allowance (DLA) is a benefit you can claim if your child needs extra help or looking after because of their special needs.
DDA - Disability Discrimination Act
Early Years Education - All pre-school education provision such as playgroups, nursery classes, pre-schools and day nurseries.
ENT - Ear, nose and throat
EDT - Emergency Duty Team
EHCP – Educational Health Care Plan – A plan to support children in school with complex Special Educational Needs and/or Disabilities
EP - Educational Psychologists are psychologists who may have previously trained and worked as teachers; they work in schools offering support with any difficulty affecting your child’s development and learning.
GDD - Global Developmental Delay. When a child has delayed achievement of one or more developmental milestones, this is Developmental Delay. Global Developmental Delay implies that the child has delays in all areas of development.
GP - General Practitioner or family doctor
HI - Hearing Impairment
HV - Health Visitor
IEP - Individual Education Plan
Key Worker - The term Key worker is used to describe workers from a variety of settings who work closely with a child young person, or adult Care Co-ordination Key workers have a specific role.
LD Nurse - Learning Disability Nurse
LA - Local Authority
Local Offer – What is available for children with SEND in the area
MLD - Moderate Learning Difficulties
MSI - Multi Sensory Impairment
Neuropsychologist - Is a psychologist who assesses and works with people who may have impaired areas of the brain that may be affecting things like speech, learning etc.
NHS - National Health Service
OT - Occupational Therapist
PAEDS - Paediatrics
Paediatrician - Doctor who specialises in the Development or care of children
PEP - Personal Education Plan
PMLD - Profound and Multiple Learning Difficulties.
Progressive - A condition which will go through a series of stages as it develops. Often suggests a condition will not improve.
SALT - Speech and Language Therapy
SEN - Special Educational Needs
SENDCo - Special Educational Needs and Disabilities Co-ordinator is a teacher within a school who is responsible for co-ordinating help for children with special educational needs.
SEND – Special Educational Needs and Disabilities
SLD - Severe Learning Difficulties. Can sometimes refer to speech and language difficulties too
SPLD - Specific Learning Difficulty, for example dyslexia or dyspraxia
SW - Social Worker
TAC - Team Around The Child
TAF – Team Around The Family
VI - Visually Impaired