Growing up and leaving school

Find out how SEND learners are supported after education.


To download the PDF Growing up in Northumberland click this image

This information is for young people, their families and carers who may need a little bit of extra help getting ready for becoming an adult. It is about helping you plan for the future.

This information talks a lot about being independent. This does not mean having to do everything for yourself or doing things on your own. When we talk about being independent, this is about you doing as much for yourself as possible and learning new skills. Being independent is different for different people. To be independent we often need a lot of help and support from our family, friends and community.

There is lots of information on this website, so it might be helpful to ask someone to help you go through it. If you would like to download a copy for yourself click here. Lots of people will help you as you grow, including your family, friends, people at school, college and youth clubs. Talk to them about anything you are worried about.  

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Education and training

This page explains the Support available when moving on from school into college, training or looking for a job

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Where you to decide to live

This page helps you to decide on where to live

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Managing your money

This page gives advice on managing your money and any benefits you get.

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Friendships and relationships

This page gives you useful information about building relationships and having a safe social life.

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Staying healthy

This page gives you information about staying healthy and what to do if you are worried about your health.

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More support and useful contacts

This page provides a number of useful contacts that may be helpful when you are growing up and leaving school.

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Transition planning

When you are 14, people will start to talk to you about what you want to do when you grow up. This is called transition planning. If you have an education, health and care plan (EHCP), planning will start in your year 9 transition review at school, and each year your plan will be updated. This will be arranged by your school or college. 

There will be lots of changes happening in your life over the next few years. Some you will be happy with and some you will be sad about. This is all part of growing up and there are lots of people who can help you get ready and understand the changes. Some of the things you might think about include:  
  • Education – what do you want to learn?  
  • Job – What job would you like? What do you need to do to get ready for work? How can other people help you get ready for work?  
  • Hobbies – what do you want to do when you are not working?  
  • Living – where will you live?  
  • Health and Support – what help do you need to stay healthy?

Making decisions

When you are 16, the law says you have the right to make decisions about your life. It is important that family, carers, teachers and other people who help you give you information so that you can make an informed decision. Sometimes people may not agree with the decision you make or think you have made a bad decision. If you have made an informed decision, this does not matter. It is your decision.  

If people think you are not able to make an informed decision even if you have as much information as possible, then a best interest meeting will make sure the right decision for you is made. Advocacy groups can help you gain the skills to make decisions. The Mental Capacity Act (2005) is the law all about making decisions, click here to learn more.