A new way of supporting children with special educational needs and disabilities will be phased in from this month.
The changes are the result of the Children and Families Act, which came into force on Monday and represents the biggest overhaul of services to children with special educational needs and disabilities for 30 years.
The changes will affect up to 8,000 children and young people in Lancashire.
County Coun. Matthew Tomlinson, cabinet member for children, young people and schools, said: “This is new national legislation which we hope will mean that services for children with special educational needs and disabilities will be more straightforward and easier for parents and young people to navigate.
“For the first time, children and young people who previously had a statement of special educational needs will now have an Education, Health and Care Plan that will cover everything they need to get the most out of life in terms of school, health, care and support, and social life.
“This will reduce the number of services parents and young people have to talk to. Another good feature of the new plans is that they include young adults up to the age of 25 as well as school-age and pre-school children. Children and young people will be very much involved in the development of their own plans.
“We have a strategy of how we’re going to gradually bring in the changes, but in the meantime current support arrangements will continue, so there won’t be any break in the services and support that children and young people with statements of SEN receive.”