Skip to main content

Early Years SEN Support (EYSS)

The aim of the Early Years SEN funding is to support pre-school aged children, with SEN, access their Early Years settings.  The funding is based on each individuals strengths and needs, not every child will need support for every aspect of their time in an Early Years provision.   

Who to contact

Contact Position
Portage and Early Years Assistant Team Manager
023 8083 4375

Where to go

Southampton Portage Service
0-25 Service – Special Educational Needs and Disability
Ground Floor North wing
Civic Centre
SO14 7LY
Children's Centre Areas

Local Offer

Service Provider Extended Local Offer Response

What does your service do?

The aim of this funding is to provide support for the child based on their individual strengths and needs.  In many cases children will not need one-to-one support for every aspect of their time in their EY provision and SEN support can be delivered in the form of:

  • Providing/designing individualised resources
  • One-to-one support
  • Equipment
  • Training.

Where is it located and what areas does it cover?

We cover all areas within the Southampton City Council boundaries. We provide funding to early year’s settings. Our offices are based in Southampton Civic Centre.

Who does your service provide for?

We provide funding within early years settings to support pre-school children.

How can I start using the service?

The SEND code of practice 2015 states that SEN support (previously referred to as early action/early action plus) should be devised and delivered using the following four stages:

  1. Assess (such as EYFS/ECAT profiles)
  2. Plan (such as seeking advice and support through SENCO/Area SENCO/ parents/Portage)
  3. Do (Implementing advice from EYAT/SALT/Portage/other and developing and recording targets. The support that will be put in place to help a child achieve the aims or targets)
  4. Review (How have the targets set and extra support helped the child make progress?) Discuss with parents/EYAT/other the next steps to meeting the child’s needs based on observations and information gained through the steps above)

(SEND Code of practice 2014, section 5.39 – 5.46)

EYSS should not be applied for unless the above has been undertaken prior to the request.

A request should only be submitted following conversations with and written consent by Parent/Carers and/or Early Years Advisory Teacher (EYAT), Portage home teacher or a specialist teacher advisor (STA).

Requests for EYSS, must be sent via secure email to: 


Via Anycomms to:



By post to:

0-25 SEND Service

Portage and Early Years

Ground Floor

North Block

Civic Centre

SO14 7LY

How are decisions made about who can use your service?

Requests for EYSS will only be considered where EY settings have discussed their intention to request SEN support with parents/carers, have gained written parental consent to do so and have discussed with and agreed this request with the Early Years Advisory Teacher.

Appropriate supporting evidence must be provided with the request as set out in section C of the EYSS request form.

Requests for Early Years SEN Support will be considered on a weekly/fortnightly basis by EY professionals with significant experience and knowledge in Special Educational Needs and Disability. Decisions will be recorded and retained by Early Years professionals within the 0 – 25 SEND service.

How do you communicate with service users and how are they involved in decision making/planning?

Parents/carers views are important and they must be involved in the process of requesting EYSS for their child. Early Years professionals should enable families/carers to share their knowledge about their child and give them confidence that their views and contributions are valued and will be acted upon. It is expected that these views will inform the support provided to children in the early years and form part of a graduated/step by step approach to the identification and delivery of their SEN support.

Is your service fully accessible?

The service supports children within their early year’s settings. 

What training are the staff supporting children and young people with SEND had or are having?

We provide funding to support a child and it is up to the setting to recruit staff, if necessary, and ensure that their staff are qualified.  However, it is expected that staff supporting children who are in receipt of SEN support are suitably trained and experienced in working with children who have SEND.

Examples of suitable SEN training are listed below and staff supporting children who are in receipt of EYSS funding must have received or be planning to undertake the training below or similar:

Appropriate  -

  • Makaton modules 1-4
  • Managing challenging behaviour
  • Promoting Inclusion
  • Autism and social communication difficulties
  • Speech, language and communication SLT training
  • British Sign Language (Level 1)
  • Sensory impairment-vision/hearing
  • Physical disability
  • ECAT enhanced training
  • PECS (Picture exchange communication system)
  • Portage Basic Workshop
  • Role of the SENCo

How will I know my child will be safe using this service?

Your child will remain in their early years setting.  All staff should adhere to each individual settings policies.

How do I give feedback, make comments or raise concerns?

Your initial point of contact should be your child’s key worker, or the manager of the setting that your child attends.

You can also go to the compliments, comments and complaints page on the Southampton City Council Website

Or writing to:

Customer Relations Team
Legal, HR & Democratic Services
Room 210, Municipal Block
Southampton City Council
Civic Centre
SO14 7LY

Who can I contact for further information?

Further information on services for families and children who have additional needs can be found on the Local Offer (see below) and parents/carers must be informed that they can access information in this way.

Access the Local Offer via the hyperlink below                                                View the Southampton SEND Local Offer for more information on SEND and services available to families

Share your feedback on this page ∇

Please provide feedback on our website. Try to include any constructive suggestions for improvements and we will do our best to incorporate them.

Back to top