Special educational needs

What is a special educational need?

The term 'Special Educational Need' (SEN) has a legal definition, referring to children who have learning difficulties or disabilities that make it harder for them to learn or access education than most children of the same age.

If your child has a special educational need, they may need extra help in a range of areas, for example:

  • school work
  • reading, writing, number work or understanding information
  • expressing themselves or understanding what others are saying
  • making friends or relating to adults
  • behaving properly at school
  • organising themselves
  • some kind of sensory or physical needs which may affect them in school

Help and advice 

There is plenty of help and advice available from special educational needs specialists, teachers, and voluntary organisations. The Children's Education Advisory Service (CEAS) is a great source of information and help, their page on SEN.

Register the need with the RAF

A special educational need should to be registered with the RAF it is not compulsory but it is a good idea to register with the CEAS so that these two agencies can liaise and your child’s needs can be met on future postings. See the RAF Community pages on the MOD website for details.


If your child has a disability, the SSAFA Forces Help website page for families with special needs and disabilities is very helpful. Alternatively go to the Family Support Section on our website.

Jobs for people with disabilities

Incluzy is a website where both employers and jobseekers can search, post and blog on anything do with with jobs working with Autism. So if you are an employer looking to employ someone, or you live is Autism yourself and would like to look for a job, then Incluzy could be for you.

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