National Helpline


Call us:

020 8538 3731

Walk in advice centres

Click here for details and locations.


**Need help? Call our Helpline!

Call 0208 538 3731 or 0300 302 3731

** Our helpline is now open again on Tuesday afternoons
2 - 5pm - we apologise for any inconvenience caused while it was recently necessary to close on Tuesday afternoons.

** Evening Helpline Change
The evening helpline is changing from Wednesday evenings to Tuesday evenings 8pm - 10pm

We offer advice on:

  • getting the right help for your child
  • dealing with the school or local authority
  • interpreting official letters
  • obtaining an EHCP for your child
  • finding independent expert professional advice
  • appealing to the Special Educational Needs and Disability Tribunal

Our helpline is usually manned every weekday between 9:30am and 12:30 and between 2:00 and 5:00pm and on Tuesday evenings from 8pm to 10pm.  A reduced service may operate on Friday afternoons. The helpline may also be closed during volunteer training sessions, please see below for any closure dates.

Please note the helpline is only open during school term time.

The helpline will be open -

Monday 11 April - Friday 27 May 2016 (except 2 May Bank Hol)

Monday 6 June - Friday 22 July 2016

The helpline will be closed for training from 9.30 - 12.30 on:

  • Wednesday 8th June 2016
  • Monday July 11th 2016

The helpline will be closed during the school holidays on the following dates:

  • Friday 25 March to Friday 8 April 2016
  • Monday 2 May 2016 (Bank Holiday)
  • Monday 30 May to Friday 3 June 2016
  • Monday 25th July to early September 2016


Getting the best from the Helpline

When you phone us you will find us very welcoming and informal but do make sure you:-

  • Have all your papers in order with you, so that you can refer to them easily.
  • Try to note down beforehand the key points e.g. all the needs you know or feel your child may have, the name of the local authority you live in and any information from the school.

We do understand that parents are very stressed when they call and it will be so very much easier to ensure that we give you the best advice possible if we have a concise but complete account of your concerns. It also ensures that not only can your case be dealt with well, but that more parents can be helped during the session time available.

Before you contact us, and so that we can provide the best possible advice, it might also be helpful if you have:

  • A copy of the SEN Code of Practice. 
    A PDF version of the SEND Code of Practice: 0 to 25 years (from September 2014) can be downloaded from the Department of Education website here.
    For those with Statements the previous code of practice remains valid until 2018, a PDF version of this SEN Code of Practice is here.
  • There is other useful information, including a Guide for Parents which can be found here.