Changes in the way children with special needs (SEN) are identified and catered for will see parents given new rights to buy help for children and fewer children labelled as having SEN in the biggest change to the system for 30 years.
Under the plans, families will be given legal powers to control budgets for children and young people who need support.
Ministers are pressing ahead with the proposals in a bid to make it easier for parents to get their child help, without being passed between agencies..
The reforms will also see education, health and social services forced by law to work together to support children with special educational needs.
Among other reforms, SEN children will also have the right to seek a place at academies and free schools.
And there will be a new single category of SEN, replacing the current systems which have been deemed too complicated.
There will also be tighter rules on which children can be identified as having SEN.
This is likely to cut the numbers of youngsters considered to have SEN, and comes after Ofsted warned that many children were being wrongly identified as having SEN because of poor teaching.
In an Ofsted report published in autumn 2010, it was found that as many as half of all pupils identified for School Action, the lowest SEN statement category, would not be identified as having these needs if schools focused on improving teaching and learning for all with individual goals for improvement.
Official figures suggest that around one in five schoolchildren - roughly 1.7 million - are classed as having special needs.
However these changes are causing concern that it is simply a way of cutting the number of children who need help in order to save money.
There are also concerns from teaching unions that even if access to services is improved, the services themselves are not being protected from cuts.
In an attempt to provide more holistic support ministers confirmed that SEN statements (which set out a child's needs and requirements) and learning difficulty statements (which are usually for older children) will be axed and replaced with a birth to 25 assessment and care plan.