Skip to main content

Children and Families Bill Committee (Ministerial Clarification)

Volume 561: debated on Wednesday 24 April 2013

During the Children and Families Bill Committee on 16 April I said in the debate on the hon. Member for Washington and Sunderland West’s (Mrs Hodgson) new clause 20 that:

“The Ministry of Justice and Her Majesty’s Courts and Tribunals Service already publish information on the number of appeals registered, the outcomes, the type of special educational need to which the appeals relate, the number of appeals registered against each local authority, and other information, including judicial costs, venue costs, administration costs, the cost to a local authority defending a tribunal case and so on”.

The Ministry of Justice (MOJ) does publish statistics on the appeals to the first-tier tribunal (special educational needs and disability) on its website but it does not include information about costs.

The MOJ publishes for each quarter on its website statistics on the work of the tribunals within Her Majesty’s Courts and Tribunals Service (HMCS). The publication for the second quarter (July to September) which is usually published in January, contains annual statistics for the first-tier tribunal (SEND), covering September to August of the previous academic year.

The tables for SEN appeals cover the number of appeals by type of appeal, by the type of SEN, the decisions by type of SEN, the outcomes (whether they were decided, withdrawn or conceded) the outcomes by type of SEN, the breakdown of the child’s ethnic origin and the legal representation for parents and local authorities at hearings (although the figures for the last two years are not available). Similar information is published on disability discrimination claims the tribunal receives. Figures on the number of SEN appeals registered by local authority, both raw numbers and per 10,000 of the school population, are also published. The first-tier tribunal (SEND) section of the MOJ’s website ( has also now started providing a link to the quarterly statistics. Information about costs is not published.

I apologise for inadvertently misleading the Committee and I have written to Committee members in addition to this statement. A copy of that letter has been placed in the Libraries of both Houses.