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Jargon Buster

Below are some of the common words, phrases and acronyms that you may come across.


Academy School – School that is run by an Academy Trust

Accommodated – Child looked after by the Local Authority by agreement with the parent, the Local Authority does not acquire parental responsibility

ADD – Attention Deficit Disorder

ADHD – Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

Admissions Authority – The body that decides the rules on how children will get a place at a school and who is offered a place

Admission Limit – Maximum number of pupils intended to admit into any year of a school

Admission Number – Number of pupils that must be admitted into the year of entry, if demand requires

ADOS – Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule (a standardized diagnostic test for Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD))

ADT- Attention Deficit Trait

AEN – Additional Education Needs

Agreed Syllabus – Syllabus of religious education agreed between the religious bodies, LA and teachers’ representatives for use in schools

AIM – Attendance Improvement and Monitoring

AIO – Attendance Improvement Officer (a professional employed to help parents and the LA to meet their statutory duty in relation to school attendance)

Annual Review – Review of EHCP that must occur at least annually

AP – Alternative Provision

Appeals – Parents rights of appeal against certain decisions relating to admission to school, special educational provision and permanent exclusion from school

ASC – Autistic Spectrum Condition

ASD – Autistic Spectrum Disorder

Attainment Target – The knowledge, skills and understanding that pupils of different abilities and ages are expected to have by the end of each national curriculum key stage



BESD – Behavioural, Emotional and Social Difficulties

BSL – British Sign Language

BSP – Behaviour Support Plan



CAMHS – Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services.

Care Order – An order of the court placing a child in the care of an authority

CCG – Clinical Commissioning Group

Children and Family Centres – A one stop resource for families especially those with children of preschool age

CME – Children Missing Education

CMHT– Community Mental Health Team

Compass – School Nursing Service

COP – Code of Practice (guidance on how to identify, asses and provide for children with SEN)

Co-production – an equal relationship between people who use services and the people who are responsible for the delivery of services working together

Community School – Funded by an LA

CP – Child Protection
CQC – Care Quality Commision (regulate and inspect health and social care services)

CYP – Children and Young People



DBS – Disclosure and Barring Service (used to check for criminal records and to make sure unsuitable people do not get to work with vulnerable people)

DCD – Developmental Coordination Disorder (also known as Dyspraxia)

DDA – Disability Discrimination Act

DfE – Department for Education.

DLA – Disability Living Allowance (a disability benefit for under 16 year olds)

Dual Registered – when a pupil is on the roll of more than one school



EA – Equality Act (formally the Disability Discrimination Act)

EAL – English as an Additional Language

EBD – Emotional Behavioural Disability

EHCP – Education and Health Care Plan

EBD / EBSD – Emotional behavioural (and social) difficulties.

EHE – Elective Home Education

EMP – Enhanced Mainstream Provision. Specialist ‘unit’ within a mainstream school

EOTAS – Education Other Than At School

EP – Educational Psychologist

Exclusions – Headteachers may exclude pupils from school for serious breaches of discipline. These may be for a fixed period or permanent
EYFS – Early Years Foundation Stage



FE – Further Education (age 16+)

FFS – For Fudge Sake. Common term used by parents/carers

Flex Learning – 

FMS – Fine motor skills

FSM – Free School Meals



GCE ‘A’ Level – General Certificate of Education Advanced Level (usually taken 16+)

GCE ‘AS’ Level – General Certificate of Education Advanced Supplementary Level (usually a one-year course and is equivalent to half an A Level)

GCSE – General Certificate of Secondary Education. Usually taken at the end of Key Stage 4 (age 16)

GDD– Global Developmental Delay

Governing Body – The governors who have overall responsibility for the school
Grammar School – Selective state school



Home Tuition – Tuition for pupils at home, arranged by the local authority in special circumstances



IAP – Independent Appeal Panel (when appealing for a school placement)

IBP – Individual Behaviour Plan

IDP – Inclusion Development Programme

Independent School – A fee paying school

Internal Exclusion – Where a student is excluded but is sent somewhere within school





KS – Key Stages

KS1 – Years 1 and 2

KS2 – Years 3, 4, 5 and 6

KS3 – Years 7, 8 and 9

KS4 – Years 10 and 11

KS5 – Years 12 and 13 (and in some cases Year 14) – also known as ‘Sixth Form’



LA – Local Authority (Warwickshire County Council) deals with the administration of a local council

LAC – Looked After Children

LD – Learning Disability

LA School – School for which the LA has financial and administrative responsibility (not an Academy or an Independent School)

LM – Learning Mentor

LS – Learning Support 

LSA – Learning Support Assistant



Maintained School – Any county or voluntary school maintained by the authority, including any maintained special school not established in a hospital

Managed Move – changing to a different school arranged by the school (should only be done if the parent and the LA agree that it is in the best interest of the child)

MAT – Multi-Academy Trust (the umbrella management of Academy Schools (sometimes referred to as MAC – Multi-Academy Company))

Mislocated Children – Children of compulsory school age whose whereabouts are unknown.

MLD – Mild Learning Difficulties

MS – Multiple Sclerosis. A condition that can affect the brain and spinal cord, causing a wide range of potential symptoms such as problems with vision, arm or leg movement, sensation, or balance

MSI – Multi-Sensory Impairment. A combination of visual and hearing difficulties

Mediation – Where a trained person helps sort out any conflict between one child and other pupils or teachers



NASEN – National Association for Special Educational Needs

NC – National Curriculum

NEET- Young people aged 16-25 Not in Education, Employment or Training

Non-Contact Days – Five days a year on which pupils do not attend school. Teachers use these days for training and report writing (also known as inset days)

Non-Contact Time – Non-teaching time where teachers prepare lesson plans etc

NQT – Newly Qualified Teacher

Number On Roll – Head count of full-time and part-time pupils, excluding nursery unit

NVQ – National Vocational Qualification



OCD – Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

OFSTED – Office for Standards in Education (inspects and advises on schools and colleges)

OMG – Oh My Goodness. Another term commonly used by parents/carers

OT – Occupational Therapist

Out of Area – Children being taught in a school in one authority while living in the area of another authority

Oversubscription Criteria – the rules about who has priority for a place when a school does not have places for all the children who apply



PALs – Patient Advice and Liaison team.

PAN – Published Admission Number (the number of children that a school has agreed to admit each year)

Parent – Any person who has custody of a child or young person

Parent Carer – Any person who is the parent of a child with SEND 

Parental Responsibility – All rights, duties, powers, responsibilities and authority which by law the parent of a child has

PECS – Picture Exchange Communication System.

PfA – Preparation for Adulthood

PIP – Personal Independence Payments – A disability benefit for those aged over 16 years

PIVATS – Performance Indicators for Value Added Target Setting

Plan Coordinator – The LA officer responsible for writing and maintaining statements

PRU – Pupil Referral Unit

PSP – Pastoral Support Programme

PTA – Parent Teacher Association





Restorative Justice – Allows a child to put right any harm done by talking through their actions with the person they did it to

ROSCO / ROSSCO – Remote Observational Schedule for Social Communication (part of an autism assessment to be done online when unable to do it face to face (e.g during Covid pandemic))



SALT / SLT – Speech And Language Therapist

SATs – Standard Assessment Tests (tests set at the end of Year 2 and Year 6)

SEAL – Social and Emotional Aspects of Learning

SEN – Special Educational Needs (if a child has a learning difficulty that calls for specialist educational provisions to be made for them)

SENCO – Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator (member of staff in a school or an early years setting who coordinates special educational needs provision)

SEND – Special Educational Need and/or Disability.

SENDIAS – Special Educational Needs and Disabilities Information Advice and Support Service

SEND Tribunal – An independent body that determines appeals by parents against LA decisions on assessments and statements

SEN Mediation – Independent service to resolve disputes between parents, schools and LA

SEN Support Plan – Plan with educational support needs and goals

SLA – Service Level Agreement
SLD – Severe Learning Disability

SLE – Service Level Entitlement
SLT – Senior Leadership Team

SpLD – Specific Learning Disability

Statutory Functions – Functions conferred or imposed by a statutory instrument (law)

SWAN – Syndrome without a Name



TA – Teaching Assistant



UPN – Unique Pupil Reference Number



Voluntary Aided School – A school set up and owned by a voluntary body, usually a church body, largely financed through an LA. The governing body employ the staff and control pupil admissions and religious education

Voluntary Controlled School – A school set up by a voluntary body, usually a church body. Totally funded through an LA, the LA employs the staff



WAS – Warwickshire Attendance Service (AIOs work within this team)

WYJS – Warwickshire Youth Justice Service





YP – Young person


About us

We are a voluntary group of parent carers, all experts by experience, with a lived understanding of how challenging life can be raising a child with additional needs and / or disabilities.

Our aim is to gather the voices of Warwickshire parent carers and let these be heard to ensure that services meet the needs of our children and our families.

Join Us

You can become a Member of Warwickshire Parent Carer Voice if you have a child age 0-25 with any Special Educational Need or Disability (whether they have a diagnosis or not) and you live in or access services for your child in Warwickshire.



We run almost entirely on volunteers, our Steering Group, our Parent Reps and those who help out at events or coffee mornings or with admin. We need you to help us build Warwickshire Parent Carer Voice into an organisation that can make a difference in shaping co-produced services, taking into account the needs and preferences of parent carers of children and young people with SEND.

Links & Support

Help us build this into the ultimate signposting resource so that the parent carers in Warwickshire can find all the information they need quickly.

What We've done

Find out what your Parent Carer Forum is up to and what’s been happening for families of children and young people with SEND in Warwickshire.

News & Events

EBSA Focus Groups

Warwickshire Parent Carer Voice are currently working with education, health and social care to develop a pathway, training and toolkit for children and young people who struggle with Emotionally Based School Avoidance (you may also have heard attendance difficulties...

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inclusive schools

inclusive schools

We are currently carrying our a survey to find out how inclusive parents in Warwickshire feel our schools are - please complete it here https://www.smartsurvey.co.uk/s/WarwickshireInclusion/ (closing date Sunday 19th February).

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Administrator required

Administrator required

Are you an admin whizz? If so we need you! We are recruiting an administrator to support the ongoing development of our organisation. Full details and application form here. Closing date: Midnight Sunday 19th February 2023. Interviews will be held week commencing 27th...

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Exclusions Film

Exclusions Film

We are really proud to share this film to support families facing the exclusion of their child at school. We co-produced this with students from University of Warwick and Warwickshire County Council to help families understand the legal processes....

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Inclusive Schools Charter

Inclusive Schools Charter

After many months of hard work the new Inclusion Charter has been launched and schools across Warwickshire are being asked to show their commitment to providing an inclusive education for all children and young people.  The Charter was coproduced with Warwickshire...

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local offer

local offer

We are really pleased to be working with Warwickshire County Council and Kids at this session to improve the Local Offer website. We'd love to see you there and if you have a young person aged 12-25 please do get your young people to sign up too.

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SEND AND ALternative Provision Green paper response

SEND AND ALternative Provision Green paper response

This is a copy of our submission to the SEND and Alternative Provision Green Paper Consultation. What key factors should be considered, when developing national standards to ensure they deliver improved outcomes and experiences for children and young people with SEND...

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Summer holidays

Summer holidays

So that's the end of another school year. We can't believe how quickly this school year has gone (and how many hours of meetings and workstreams we have attended representing your views using the information that you tell us - THANK YOU - we couldn't do it with out...

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COntinence SErvice Update

COntinence SErvice Update

Thank you to everyone who contributed to our call for information on the Continence Service. Background Warwickshire Parent Carer Voice (WPCV) became aware of the challenges families were facing with accessing continence services and asked David Widdas (Designated...

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