Returning to School During COVID-19 : Information and Resources

Early Years Planning and Review Meetings (EYPARM) - Information and referral form

Page Updated: 31st July 2020

EYPARM - Early Years Planning and Review Meetings.

Within West Sussex we seek to ensure the needs of our pre-school children are raised in a timely and efficient manner within a multi-agency discussion forum. The purpose of the EYPARM is to discuss (your) pre-school child’s strengths and areas of need and how best to support these within an educational setting.

The EYPARM ensures appropriate discussion, planning and review and where necessary further assessment of pre school children who are likely to require additional support within their pre-school and eventually school. Whilst some children have ongoing, complex needs which are clear from a very young age, it is important to refer them them at a time when meaningful educational assessment can take place or when support from Early Years and Childcare Advisers may be helpful.

The EYPARM process enables West Sussex Local Authority and Health Services to follow to the requirements set out with the SEN Code of Practice. In particular it ensures:

5.15 Where a health body is of the opinion that a young child under compulsory school age has, or probably has, SEN, they must inform the child’s parents and bring the child to the attention of the appropriate local authority. The health body must also give the parents the opportunity to discuss their opinion and let them know about any voluntary organisations that are likely to be able to provide advice or assistance. This includes the educational advice, guidance and any intervention to be put in place at an early point and before the child starts school.

For every child who is referred to the EYPARM a multi-agency discussion will take place, meaning that various different professionals will be in attendance including:

  • Chair: SENAT Team Manager (always in attendance)
  • Early Years and Childcare Advisor/Consultant (works closely with Early Years Settings) (always in attendance)
  • Educational Psychologist (always in attendance)
  • Speech and Language Therapist/Locality manager
  • Portage Coordinator
  • Specialist Health Visitor
  • Nursery Nurse
  • Paediatrician
  • Specialist Teacher for the Hearing Impaired/Visually impaired

    Due to current Covid-19 restrictions these meetings are taking place remotely which may mean a change to the usual attendance. The meetings are held termly.

    Possible outcomes of the EYPARM Updated July 2020:

    • School Support. This outcome means that the needs of the child can be met from the resources ordinarily available in their setting (including their school when they reach that age). It is important to explain that this does not mean the child does not have additional needs or that they will not require additional support, but it does mean the setting and school can do this from their own resources and support mechanisms, they do not require a statutory assessment to ensure this support is available to them.
    • Referral to Early Years and Childcare Advisers. This Adviser will engage with the referrer, the family and the setting (if the child is in setting) to offer support in managing the child’s additional needs. They may also offer support around any other area of concern or challenge. The support will be practical based on a team around the child approach focused on enabling the child to successfully access pre-school and transition to school. Where this decision is made the Adviser can refer the child back to EYPARM if they feel this is necessary at any point.
    • Referral to EHC Needs Assessment Consideration Panel. This would be appropriate where the child has a significantly high level of need likely to require further assessment and extensive support at pre-school and at school when they transition. Their needs are long term and complex in nature. To allow the consideration panel to reach a decision the referrer and any other professional known the child will be asked to submit additional information about the child’s needs, provision and progress to enable an appropriate decision to be reached at this Panel.

    Professionals refer a child to the EYPARM:

    To submit a referral we require the following:

    • Child's name, address and DOB
    • Parent/guardian's name and contact details (including email address where able).
    • Name of child's Early Years Setting (if applicable)
    • Your most recent report, ready to upload as a word document or PDF

    There is the option to upload more detailed information such as other professionals involved with the child, background information and additional reports however this is not essential.

    Only professionals can refer a child to the EYPARM. If you are a parent reading this and you have concerns about your child, please speak to a professional (such as medical, portage or staff at your early years setting) who may be able to support you.

    Decisions made at EYPARM:

    SENAT will advise families if it is agreed the child’s needs can be met at school support. SENAT will also advise families if the child has been referred to the EHC Needs Assessment Consideration Panel. Where the involvement of an Early Help Early Years Adviser is agreed that Adviser will contact the family direct to agree the best way forward.

    Go to the West Sussex County Council website to make a referral

    Contact details:

    If you have questions regarding the process or require further information please contact the relevant team


  • SEND Information, Advice and Support Leaflet - SEN in the Early Years