Reviewing Individual Development Plans (IDP’s)

It’s very important that ALL children and young people enjoy success and achievement and make good progress in learning.

Early Years settings, schools and colleges use the information they have about each child or young person who has been identified as having ALN, to plan for the most appropriate support to meet their needs.

Schools and colleges will continually review how well all learners, including those with ALN, are progressing and alter the support needed accordingly.  Sometimes this will be shared in face to face meetings with parents or sometimes more informally.

An Individual Development Plan(IDP) MUST be reviewed every 12 months.  However a school, college or local authority can review a plan at any time and revise a plan following the review. 

A child or young person’s IDP is flexible document that should be reviewed and changed as a child’s or young person’s needs develop and change over time.  There may for example, have been a sudden or unexpected change in circumstances (a child or young person’s needs may have become significantly more severe or the type of support provided may not be effective)

If the child or young person’s ALN change, the IDP should be updated or reviewed. 

An IDP MUST also be reviewed:

  • at the request of a child or a child’s parent, or a young person
  • at the request of an NHS body required to secure provision

If an IDP is revised, a copy of the revised plan MUST be provided to the child and their parent, or the young person.

Following a request, a  school or college may decide not to review the IDP  because they believe there have been no real changes since the last time that the IDP was reviewed and the consider a review to be unnecessary.

The child, parent, or the young person should be notified of the decision and reasons for it (S.23 (10))

A blanket policy not to update an IDP except at certain points in time would be unlawful.  

Schools and local authorities have the power to update a plan at any time and should do so when the evidence suggests a child’s or young person’s needs have changed. 


If a school, FE, or LA conducts a review following a parental request, then it MUST complete the review including giving a copy of the revised IDP to the parent or a notification of a different decision.  Promptly  or within 35 days (schools) 7 weeks LA


A child, child’s parent or young person may appeal a local authority’s decision not to revise an IDP to the Education Tribunal

(Chapter 25 ALN Code, Section 23 &24 of the ALNEt Act provides information on reviewing IDP’s.)

Frequently Asked Questions

We’ve put together some answers to frequently asked questions about reviewing IDPs:

How should I ask for my child’s IDP to be reviewed?

If you feel your child additional learning needs have changed and are no longer accurately described in his or her IDP, or that the additional learning provision (ALP) in your child plan is no longer meeting the child or young person’s needs, you can ask for the IDP to be reviewed.

You can ask for the IDP to be reviewed at any time as long as you have a good reason.

If the child or young person’s IDP is being maintained by the school or FEI you should speak to the school or college first.   Ask the ALNCo or the Head teacher for a review of the IDP.  You should put his request in writing. (See Template letter)

If the school or college refuse, you can ask for this decision to be reconsidered by the local authority.  The school should notify you if they refuse to review the IDP. 

You should write to the most senior person at the LA, usually called the Director of Education or Head of ALN and Inclusion. (this differs in each local authority)  You can find information and contact details for this person in the notification letter sent to you from the school, or on the local authority website.

When you write to the local authority, you should also copy in the school or college so they are aware that you are asking for the local authority to reconsider and review the IDP.

Remember to keep a copy of any letter or email you send.  If you don’t get a reply within two weeks, or if you need further advice, you can contact SNAP Cymru


Template letters > requesting school or FEI to review an IDP

  • Requesting a Local authority review and maintained schools IDP?