SALT problems, advice needed please(9 Posts)
My ds is nearly 6 he's got many problems with his speech such as being unable to say certain sounds and replacing sounds in words, can make him exceptionally difficult to understand. He's been receiving speech therapy for 3 years in the form of 6 weekly blocks with on average 4 months in between each block. His last block finished in December and was pretty much a waste of time with illness etc. I phoned up and asked for an earlier review because I wanted it in place for an ed psych appointment.
The therapist who saw him phoned me to explain what she'd done and to tell me he's moved up the list of priorities. She also told me his normal therapist has left and there's no replacement yet.
So we're 4 months since the last block with nothing booked for the future.
I understand the lack of staff, cutbacks etc but in the meantime he just has to make do with not being understood properly, struggling emotionally and academically at school and flying off the handle at home.
What can I do to push for some more help for him? I've not had to battle for anything like this before, any help appreciated x
Is he on the SEN register at school? What help are they giving him there? It sounds as if you might well be justified in applying for an EHC Plan. If you can get SALT built into the EHCP, it becomes the local authority's responsibility to ensure that your DS gets SALT even if the NHS aren't providing it, by organising an independent therapist.
However, that process will take at least 20 weeks. I suspect that for immediate purposes you need to use the complaints process for the SALT service
We were in the same situation as you. I ended up paying for a private speech therapist. It cost a fortune, but for my DS it was money well spent. We also had a very detailed report carried out and it went towards evidence when we applied for a statement (now EHCP) as the other poster has said, salt is now part of his intervention at school and the LA pick up the bill.
I work with a child with SEN, and from my experience SALT does seem to be in a bit of a crisis in terms of people leaving not being replaced, not enough to go round. The child I work with has a statement, but we haven't seen a SALT since September. I can only do what I can, but have no expertise in assessing where he is.
Can your son use Makaton? It's really useful for children with difficulty speaking. The whole of the school staff should be able to get training, and you can too.
My sons salt advised me to apply for an EHCP as she knew that was the only way to get the number of sessions he needed. He had 20 sessions written into his EHCP, he was seen weekly and made a huge improvement.
MadSprocker, if the statement of the child you work with says he must have SALT, I suggest you advise his parents to get advice from someone like SOS SEN about enforcing the statement. The LA can organise an independent SALT.
Thanks for replying.
Currently at school he has nothing in place. I started badgering them about help and support a few weeks after he started. I think the teacher is trying and the other teachers in the school can clearly see he needs extra help, the head on the other hand appears to be a blocker to all of this.
In February his teacher finally got the head to agree on the ed psych referral, I have a meeting with them next month.
His teacher has said she's stuck as to what to try with him next as she's never taught anyone like him before, I'm really grateful she's been honest about it so I know I need to up my game in seeking support for him.
We live in Scotland and the in school support just doesn't seem to be there the same as in England.
I'm going to be pushing for a child's plan so that they are held accountable for what he needs.
As a parent being told that your ds has been upset at school and they couldn't understand him, that he just gave up and said it doesn't matter is heartbreaking. He's 5 he shouldn't think it's easier to give up than tell someone what's wrong.
Charities like iCAN www.ican.org.uk/ and the communication trust www.thecommunicationtrust.org.uk/ can sometimes help you find funding for therapy services and they also have fabulous training for teachers. You could also have a look at seeing if your school can access teletherapy, that he is able to do in school online mabletherapy.com/
At the very least, His teacher needs some training to help her support children with communication difficulties. I would ask your SLT service if they provide any locally. I would also ask the SLT service to share advice with school staff so anyone working with him is they able to implement strategies that will help.
When he starts his next block ask if a member of school staff can go to his next appointment with you, so they start to understand his communication needs better.
Regarding EHCP gather as much information as possible, If he has required therapy for 3 years, this is a pervasive difficulty which could affect the development of his social communication and self-esteem. important to get him the right support
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