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Provision of Equipment for Children and Young People With SEND Logo

Provision of Equipment for Children and Young People With SEND


Specialist equipment is available for children and young people with a disability or additional needs, both with or without an Education Health and Care (EHC) plan.    Equipment is essential for some children and young people to live their life within their community, home or education setting.  It is important to note that not all equipment is funded by statutory sources (e.g. social care, education or health) and some items need to be privately purchased or gained through charitable funds.

An assessment will be undertaken by one or two of a number of professionals depending on the equipment being considered.  This assessment will take place either at home, in an education setting or in a specialist clinic depending on the equipment required.  There is also a possibility that a representative from the company where the equipment will be purchased from will be present during the assessment to support the process.

More details are available regarding who will do the assessment, under what circumstances your child would need that equipment and once you received it, where you can get it repaired if necessary can be found on this page.


If my child needs help with communication

Some children with severe speech or language problems may need Augmentative and Alternative Communication  (AAC) to help them communicate. Some may use it all the time, others may say some words but use AAC for longer sentences or with people they don’t know well. AAC can help in school, at work and when talking with friends and family.

What is AAC?

Augmentative and Alternative Communication (AAC) is a range of strategies and tools to help people who find speaking difficult. These may be simple letter or picture boards, battery operated devices or computer-based systems. AAC can help someone to communicate as effectively as possible, in as many situations as possible.

Different types of AAC

No-tech communication needs no extra equipment - it is sometimes called 'unaided communication' Examples include body language, gestures, pointing, eye pointing, facial expression, vocalisations and signing.

Low-tech communication systems do not need power to function. They are sometimes called “aided communication” because they use basic equipment. Examples include a pen and paper to write or draw, alphabet and word boards, communication charts or books with pictures, photos and symbols or particular objects that represent what someone needs to understand or say.

High-tech communication systems use batteries or mains power. Gadgets or software may speak and/or produce text. Some are based on familiar equipment such as mobile devices, tablets and laptops and may have simple buttons or pages that speak when touched. Very sophisticated systems use equipment specially designed to support communication. Hi-tech communication is also sometimes called “aided communication” because it uses equipment.


If you think that a child or young person would benefit from an Augmentative and Alternative Communication system, please contact the Speech and Language Therapy Service.  If you are not currently on the Speech and Language Therapy caseload, please make a referral.  This referral can be made by anyone and must have assurance of parental consent.

Following assessment the Speech and Language Therapist will be able to advise on the following options:

  • AAC not required
  • Paper based AAC
  • Paper based AAC plus electronic AAC with funding sourced locally
  • Paper based AAC plus electronic AAC provided by a Specialist Centre

If my child need help with bathing and showering

If my child needs help with independent living skills and travelling

If my child has difficulty being moved

If my child needs medical equipment

If my child needs help standing and sitting

If my child needs equipment to help with sleep

If my child needs help going to the toilet

If my child needs help with wheelchairs

If my child needs help with feeding

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