More of a WWYD - school issues/special needs

(46 Posts)
Nicknameinvalid Sun 15-Sep-13 22:06:12

Ive posted this is Special needs as well but really need some feedback/advise.

Backstory: DC (aged 8) has ASD, he is medicated for anxiety and after a long fight was settled in mainstream school - by fight I mean I basically lived at the school for early pick up's etc.

Last 2 years he's had an amazing amazing teacher - had no prior knowledge of ASD which if I'm honest worked well as she had no expectations and worked with ds as an individual not a label..

Cue this year.. We have been back at school for 2 weeks - ds is a WRECK.. He's melting down daily, screaming fits, self harming etc.. I'm at my wits end.. This is going to sound awful but he's bordering on feral at the moment on school days - he spent 4 hours trashing his room, absolutely hysterical, threatening to kill people.. I honestly thought we were going to have to get him sedated..

Last Friday I spoke to DS's teacher and begged asked what could be done.. It then turns out that ALL of ds's support has been withdrawn.. All of it - he is being treated as a NT child in a typical environment.. There reasoning? In his class are 8 (neurotypical) children that are considered behind and so the TA is working with them solely to bring them to where they need to be..

I'm fucking livid.. DS last year had 15 hours of 1:1 (1:5 on occasion for table work) but was the focus of the 1:5 if that makes sense?

Ds's teacher says that KS2 you don't get as much support? How is this possible? The bastard head teacher assured me last year that this very thing would not happen and that we didn't need to apply for a statement for DS as 'they only issue statements for over 16hours and DS is managing very well with what school is able to provide' what the fuckwit didn't tell me was that it might all change!!

I am now pending a meeting whereby I should find out this week if they have 'allocated him' extra hours.. Meanwhile I will just rock my hysterical child some more shall I?

His teacher wants me to 'leave it with him' but I just don't know what to do - am I unreasonable to go straight over his head? My concern is that due to ds's needs I really need a good relationship with this teacher and I suspect going over his head wouldn't be the best start.

Actually I'm not angry, I'm absolutely devestated - I'm literally watching every ounce of work me and his last teacher put it just disappear and with it my little boy who was coping with mainstream.

God that ended up long! Sorry!!

gordyslovesheep Sun 15-Sep-13 22:10:47

That is totally unacceptable - I am so sorry

are parent partnership involved at all - they will rip the head a new one for doing this

I feel your pain (DD1 G+T and being assessed for ASD - spent the whole of today telling me what a useless mum I am and how she hates me - as it's Sunday and she has to face her bullies tomorrow sad ) x

Nicknameinvalid Sun 15-Sep-13 22:13:14

They aren't involved.. We tried to get them involved a few years back when ds literally had the teacher from
Hell (made him stand in a corner!!) but PP are massively underfunded in our area and no one ever called us back! I can't believe they can just do this! sad

Sorry your going through simaler - it's awful when we are the ones fighting the hardest yet still get the worst of the behaviours.

vj32 Sun 15-Sep-13 22:13:35

I would complain to the head and the governors in writing that the school have withdrawn all support for your son without warning or consultation with you. How does the SENCO justify this?

Apply for a statement. Otherwise it will probably happen again.

gordyslovesheep Sun 15-Sep-13 22:15:05

they can't - do you have a statement?

Give PP another call and keep calling - they have held my hand through so much shite - such as exclusion and being banned from any school trips - it's not acceptable x

shouldistayorshouldagonooooooo Sun 15-Sep-13 22:18:02

Ah didn't want to read and run!

Hopefully done one will come with some good advice . My advice tends to end end up aggressive and stabby...

Big hugs to you two lady's up top! ^^^^^^^^^

If you have a statement then the school is legally obliged to meet it, however dear Mr Gove has taken away the SEN budget and left most Senco's with their hands tied because they have no money.

Keep on at the school, go through your GP, contact your MP and good luck

Nicknameinvalid Sun 15-Sep-13 22:18:26

Head told me ds wouldn't get a statement as he requires less than 16hrs of support? Was he lying? wouldn't surprise me at this stage

BrokenSunglasses Sun 15-Sep-13 22:20:08

The school should have warned you earlier that they weren't going to be able to provide the staff member for your ds's 1-1 hours when he reached KS2.

You need to prepare yourself for this meeting, and until then try and talk to this teacher to find out as much as you can about how ds is coping during the day at school.

TeamEdward Sun 15-Sep-13 22:21:42

Wow. That is really terrible. I'm so sorry your son and you are being put through this.

What about going through the SENCo rather than the teacher? We are very lucky our SENCo is great and very on the ball about support inside and out of the classroom.
When DS (dyslexic and under CDC assessment for ASD) was not given any support and punished on the first day of school for only writing two words in 10 minutes, and then told to stop crying like a baby, the SENCo and Head of Year were very quick to sort teacher out.

Is your teacher just following orders from above, or did he move TA support to the NT children?

gordyslovesheep Sun 15-Sep-13 22:23:22

not necessarily lying but it depends who told you he needed less than 16 hrs

It may be worth applying for a statement anyway

even if he doesn't qualify he still has recognised SEN and therefore the school have to address this - withdrawing 1-1 support to use HIS TA and 1-1 time to help coach other kids is NOT acceptable.

Yes SEN budgets are squeezed - mainly in schools that took the academy money and then realised they had to spend some on SEN - plus Gove doesn't want SEN kids in mainstream schools

BUT that is irrelevant - he is not getting the support he is entitled to and they are in the wrong.

I hate that everything is such a battle when you just want your kids treated fairly

uselessinformation Sun 15-Sep-13 22:33:44

If school is causing that much stress and anxiety for your child then I would keep him at home, at least until the proper support was put in place. Not the same situation but I withdrew my child from school before he had another school place. It was wonderful to see the anxiety disappear.

WetAugust Sun 15-Sep-13 22:45:32

This really shouldn't be in AIBU. Can you please ask MN to move it to Special Needs:Children?

You don't have a Statement so any support the school has provided can (and has been) withdrawn.

If you had a Statement then school would legally have to provide the support that a Statement says they must provide.

That's why parents with children with SENs who need additional support should apply for Statements.

You need to do 2 things:

1) get the help that he used to receive back again

2) get a Statement so it can't be taken away again.

You need to speak to the teacher and to the SENCO and need to put in writing what has happened and how this has affected your son. In writing is very important. You should be demanding that school reinstate at least some of the support he had previously.

This covers the immediate situation.

You should also apply directly to the LA for a statutory assessment that may lead to your son being issued with a Statement detailing the support he requires. The whole assessment process can take up to 6 months - so it needs to start immediately.

You can find out how to apply for a Statement yourself and see the sort of letter you'd need tyo write to the Local Authority at this website IPSEA

Don't 'leave it with school' - all school wants to do is keep a lid on it.

Ignore school - they have been lying to you. There are no 16 hours of support rules before you can get a Statement. That's a lie. It's not 'normal' to reduce support at KS2. That's a lie.

It's also illegal for a school to have blanket policies that prejudge who may or may not require a Statement. It's the LA and not school who determines whether a child needs a Statement. School could have applied for a Statement for him but you'll find schools are reluctant to do so. So parents have to apply for Statements themselves.

Don't automatically trust your local Parent Partnership - a lot of them are very cosy with the Local Authorities.

You should also demand that the school draws up an IEP setting and monitoring targets for your son - teacher and SENSO need to do this with your input.

You should also demand that your son is seen by the Ed Pysch - if school won't call the Ed Pysch you can do it yourself.

I am glad that you are angry at being lied to and so badly let down by school- I hope you channel that anger into getting your DS the help he undoubtedly needs.

If you want to understand what school should have been doing and to arm yourself with guidance on how he should be supported in school then you could download this which is the 'bible' on SENs that school should follow SEN COP

Best wishes

gordyslovesheep Sun 15-Sep-13 22:48:18

I think the OP posted in BOTH places - and I think she got support here - PP have been very supportive to me as a parent and to both of my SEN children - the OP was asking for help and information - I found they supplied both impartially.

Good luck x

SunshineMMum Sun 15-Sep-13 22:52:39

Yep we had exactly the same for DS (autism) in year four. He'd had 15 hours of support and during the last two we were told we weren't even entitled to know what hours or how he was getting. I trusted the Head/senco who was anti statementing and who was supportive to his complex years in the early years. Can't emphasise how I wished we had gone down the statmenting rout, I think DS is getting very little at secondary!

IneedAsockamnesty Sun 15-Sep-13 22:59:44

www.mumsnet.com/special-needs/education/statutory-assessments

Have a look at that link its helpful.

Oh and the school are talking bollocks there is no requirement for 16 hours of support before you apply none at all

McNewPants2013 Sun 15-Sep-13 23:01:28

that is awful.

If it is any help my DS aged 7 and in year 3 has just had the EP come in. It has been an uphill battle for someone to come and access him.

WetAugust Sun 15-Sep-13 23:07:12

Never trust a school that says your child 'doesn't need a Statement'.

If a child has significant difficulties then the only way to find out the full extent of those difficulties and what support is required to support those difficulties is to undertake a full assessment that may lead to a Statement being issued.

School cannot say one way or another whether a Statement is necessary or not - school is just one of the many reports that are gathered to decide whether a Statement is needed.

Without a full statutory assessment school is just guessing at what may be required.

IneedAsockamnesty Sun 15-Sep-13 23:07:42

Oh and my understanding of the actual amount of support in a statement if they put in part 3 (think I'm remembering that correctly) that he is to get 16 hours on 1-1 support that would be considered to be a very high needs pupil with a very good statement.

I could be wrong but I'm pretty sure that's about the max that they would do because the school are supposed to put in place support that's required using there own normal funding as well as the additional funding that comes from the statement so not rely on the extra funding to do everything for that child.

gordyslovesheep Sun 15-Sep-13 23:10:29

Without a full statutory assessment school is just guessing at what may be required

this - with bells on x

WetAugust Sun 15-Sep-13 23:18:19

Sock

All the support provided to a child with a Statement should be written into that Statement regardless of where the funding comes from.

Funding is a red herring. The parent doesn't need to care who funds - it's not the parent's problem.

If a child needs 25 hours 1:1 support that's what should be in the Statement. If the LA thinks school should fund a proportion of it from their delegated budget then that is an argument that school needs to have with the LA - not with the parent

There are no maximum hours in a Statement. You could have 24 hours per day 52 weeks per year if that was assessed as being needed.

AuntySib Sun 15-Sep-13 23:23:58

Push for a statement. It takes ages so start now. I think the state position may have changed in that SEN is now "bottom 20 per cent". Speak to SENCO and ask for full details of what school is obliged to provide and what it is in fact able to do, because it may have changed from last year. Once you have that info, you are in a better position to decide what to do.
Speak to last year's teacher and explain problem -he/she may be able to help/liaise with new teacher.
Contact LEA and ask them to spell out what their current obligation is.
Once you have done all this, speak to Head.
It is undoubtedly going to be a long haul, and you are going to have to be very proactive. In my last school, parents of SEN children expected ( and received) a weekly update as to what was being done with their child ( in very MC school with ultra pushy parents) Had never seen this happen in other schools, but it was interesting to see how much difference pushy parents made. ( loads)

IneedAsockamnesty Sun 15-Sep-13 23:27:59

I didn't mean that it should be the parents issue just that if they specified that level of 1-1 then it would be a pretty good statement so certainly not a minimum requirement of getting one.

WetAugust Sun 15-Sep-13 23:45:48

No Sock. 16 hours a week is not a 'pretty good statement' per se.

You need to stop applying blanket thinking here.

If the child is assessed as requiring 25 hours per week, then 16 hours a week is a 'pretty poor Statement'.

80sbabe Sun 15-Sep-13 23:49:33

WetAugust is spot on with advice - you need to get a statement in place asap.
I am speaking here not only as a parent of a child with SEN but also as an SEN Governor in a primary school.
I am aghast that the school has removed your son's support without any discussion, planning or thought as to the consequences.

You need to take steps to get a statement in place asap, but do bear in mind that they can take a while. I would also recommend that you keep in close touch with the LA while they go through the process and make sure they don't drag their feet. Find out who your named caseworker will be and make sure that they know you are monitoring the progress of the statement very carefully.
Be nice, but firm - that may be stating the bleeding obvious and sorry if it is, but I have known parents wait for it to take it's course and it take the best part of a year. From what you say your DS can't afford to wait any longer than necessary, and nor should he.

Parent partnership services can vary enormously from being very good and helpful to wishy washy and patronising - still it won't harm to contact them anyway and see what comes of it.

In the meantime you absolutely must complain to the school in writing and I'd also be asking for a meeting with the head, the school SENCO and include the SEN governor too. Ensure that the meeting is minuted and that you receive a copy afterwards for your own records. Set action points to put in place immediately and set a date for a follow up progress meeting at the end of this half term and then do the same next half term and on and on until you have your statement. Then you will need to monitor that they do put in place what the statement says they have to.

Does your son have an IEP ? Personally we've never got far with the ones set for our DS, but at the very least one will be a starting point to work from and the school will have to acknowledge your son's individual needs in the document.

Look at the EHRC website - they have an excellent section on Education provision and the legal responsibilities of schools in relation to the Equality Act 2010. They are also brilliant at talking you through things and have template letters too if you need to go that far.

I do feel for you, as I've been here and I appreciate how much hard work and effort it can be.
Wish you lots of luck that it gets sorted sooner rather than later and so sorry that you and your DS are going through such a tough time.

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