What is an Individual Development Plan (IDP)?

An Individual Development Plan (IDP) is a plan created and agreed by those people most closely involved with supporting a child or young person including parents/carers.

An IDP will be created:

  • As an alternative to the statementing, School Action & School Action Plus processes for young people in mainstream and special schools.
  • For young people, up to the age of 25, who need on-going support as they move out of school into further education, work or continuing care.
  • For children with complex needs – birth to school. i.e. those children who currently come under the Early Support initiative.

What’s in an IDP?

An IDP is not limited to the support needed by a young person for education. Where relevant, an IDP should address the support needs of the young person throughout the day and in different contexts – home, school, social life, colleges, work, continuing care.

Actions that health or social care professionals, voluntary sector organisations or families’ have identified a need for will all be included.

An IDP consists of the following key elements:

  • A one-page profile
  • Evidence for the action that is proposed expressed using a Person Centred Thinking approach (for more details see separate sheet).
  • An agreed action plan
  • Names & contact details for all involved in the team

The level of detail in each plan will depend on the needs of the young person. The action plan might include half a dozen actions or just one. The actions may relate just to school or to a whole range of services such as CAMHS, physio, speech and language.

Who is involved in creating an IDP?

This will depend on the level of intervention required.

  • For a young person in mainstream school who would previously have been supported through School Action then it is likely to be the SENCO/specialist teacher, parents/carers any other school staff who have a role in identifying what support/action needs to take place.
  • For a young person who would have been supported through School Action+ those already involved in school, plus anyone from other organisations who have a role in identifying what support/action needs to take place.
  • For a young person who would have been supported through a Statement all those who have expertise to share about the young person’s needs

How long does an IDP last?

An IDP should be reviewed at least every 6 months, but if the team who have put it together agree that it needs to be reviewed more frequently then they can choose to do this. It doesn’t have to be the same frequency each time – it should respond to the needs of the young person and the nature of the support planned.

Once a young person has an IDP will they have one indefinitely?

A young person should only have an IDP for as long as they need one. The idea of reviewing IDPs at least every 6 months is to ensure that what is being providing is working and is still relevant.

If a young person no longer needs support then the IDP can be closed and kept on file for reference. If the young person needs more support then as more agencies become involved the IDP itself will become more complex.

Last Modified: 05/12/2018
For more information contact:

Inclusion Service

Tel: 01495 766929 or 01495 766968

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