Pre diagnosis

Does it matter whether you get a diagnosis of disability for your child or not?

Not having a diagnosis may matter very much to you as a parent and it may matter to your child as they get older, as your child may want to understand why they can't walk or see or why they have an impairment. However, for many practical purposes, it doesn't make any difference whether you have a diagnosis or not. This is because:

  • Treatment, therapy or teaching should be tailored to your child's needs, not to the name of their condition.
  • You're entitled to have a social services assessment of your child's needs and of your needs as a parent or carer, whether your child has a named diagnosis or not.
  • You're entitled to receive benefits such as Disability Living Allowance on the basis of the difficulties that your child has and the support they need. Entitlement does not depend on being able to name the disorder your child has.
  • Decisions on your child receiving support through a My Support Plan or Education, Health and Care Plan are not dependent upon a diagnosis. Staff and Professionals will consider your child's needs in their education setting.


Don't know where to start to get support?

The Local and National Support Services and Useful Links pages within the Local Offer, lists some of the special educational needs and disabilities we are most frequently asked about. However, the list is not exhaustive of the support that is available both locally and nationally.

If you can't find what you are looking for or simply don't know where to start to look for support, get in touch with York Family Information Service. York FIS can provide you with a tailored list of options of local support groups and networks, inclusive activities and fun things to do, information about childcare for children with special educational needs and disabilities and much more.


I don't feel my child is being supported at school.

York SENDIASS (Special Educational Needs and Disabilities Information, Advice and Support Service) offer impartial advice and information to families in York, who have children aged 0 - 25 years who have special educational needs and disabilities. Your child does not need to have a diagnosis to access this service.