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A "suitable education"

(90 Posts)
racetothebottom Thu 12-Sep-13 07:07:02

Have namechanged.

Does anyone know whether having a child taught solely by a TA at home constitutes a "suitable education" under the Education Act for a child out of school?

Usually, LAs provide tuition. Our LA wants to send a TA for the next 3 months while they "assess" DS further. He has a statement and complex needs but can't cope with school.

claw2 Thu 12-Sep-13 10:08:26

"“suitable education”, in relation to a child or young person, means efficient education suitable to his age, ability and aptitude and to any special educational needs he may have.

So it would depend on your circumstances and your child's needs.

claw2 Thu 12-Sep-13 10:10:48

For example if the statement requires that teaching staff have specific training and this TA doesn't have it, it wouldn't be suitable.

racetothebottom Thu 12-Sep-13 10:20:49

But the statement is based on the assumption the child is in the class with a teacher supported by a TA and not taught exclusively away from the classroom by the TA.

I thought there were rules about TAs and teaching responsibilities.

KeepOnKeepingOn1 Thu 12-Sep-13 10:26:57

Is DS's absence medically authorised - not just by his GP but by paed/CAMHS?

I don't think it about legislation regarding appropriate interpretation of a statement but that your DS is covered by the same legislation as NT DC or those without a statement.

This means that the LA has a legal duty to provide EOTAS if a child is out of school longer than 15 days (and provide written medical authorisation). Don't waive legal entitlement.

The LA want the TA to be a bridge to getting him into school and are not concerned about suitability.

claw2 Thu 12-Sep-13 10:37:24

Well it depends on your circumstances and your ds's needs.

When ds was signed off school with anxiety/school phobia (awaiting statement and new specialist school to be named), it was recommended that a TA from receiving school, who had training in and experience of ASD came home to teach ds. This would have been the most suitable education for him and what I would have preferred.

But we didn't get that. I was told insurance didn't cover a TA to come home, im not sure if that was just an excuse or not, so that might be worth looking into, if you don't want TA.

claw2 Thu 12-Sep-13 10:42:03

and more to the point I suppose why you don't think its a suitable education?

I would have much preferred some of the lovely TA's I have met, to the home tutor from the PRU unit.

KeepOnKeepingOn1 Thu 12-Sep-13 10:43:31

Claw - whether or not the TA is a good idea or not depends upon whether or not the receiving school is the parental or the LA choice where there is disagreement.

It sounds like it may not be the parental choice of school?

claw2 Thu 12-Sep-13 10:46:28

and the work that the home tutor delivered was picked up directly from the school. Ds is 9, the work was straight forward, I could have done it with him myself. Academic qualifications were not needed, just an understanding of ASD and his difficulties.

claw2 Thu 12-Sep-13 10:47:46

Exactly Keep, it depends OP's circumstances and her ds's needs.

KeepOnKeepingOn1 Thu 12-Sep-13 10:49:21

Claw - what if the LA had wanted to send a TA from DS's old school with the intention of him returning?

claw2 Thu 12-Sep-13 10:53:25

Then that wouldn't have been suitable for ds. That is kind of the point I was trying to make its based on the circumstances and individual needs of that child as to whether the education being offered is suitable or not. Not whether its a TA or not.

racetothebottom Thu 12-Sep-13 11:00:01

"Academic qualifications were not needed" - this may be the reality, but it is not the way our education system works in terms of teachers having a defined role and responsibility for teaching.

Would it be acceptable for a non-statemented child to be taught by a TA full-time without teacher input? I suspect not. So why is it for a child with SEN.

There is nothing in his age, aptitude or SEN to alter this.

KeepOnKeepingOn1 Thu 12-Sep-13 11:02:49

So the question is whether the TA is a bridge to appropriate placement.

Tbh I don't OP would be posting here under a different name or that her DS would be out of school if the placement were appropriate.

claw2 Thu 12-Sep-13 11:11:43

Sorry Race, I was talking about in my circumstances academic qualifications were not needed. Due to my circumstances, more emphasis on understanding ASD and ds's difficulties, than academic qualifications.

Obviously not in your circumstances, as I don't know what they are.

I was giving an example of my circumstances and what was a suitable education for ds, as I don't know yours.

A TA from receiving school would have been the most suitable education for ds. A TA from old school would not have been suitable.

TOWIELA Thu 12-Sep-13 11:15:13

My child was out of school for over a year - the first 7 months without a Statement and then with a crap illegal Final Statement for the final 5 months. In the 7 months he was without a school, he was not allowed to access any state education in school whatsoever. This was because he was previously in an indie school and when I withdrew him and my solicitors asked the LA to find him a state mainstream school on SA+, the LA point-blank refused to help and hid behind a Tribunal Order which stated that the LA didn't have to help. My solicitors wanted to appeal this to the second tier tribunal, but this was smaller battle in the bigger picture of getting a ss named, so I didn't fight it.

So my son was denied ANY school education whatsoever for the first 7 months and I had absolutely no alternative but to home ed him. Technically, because a school was named for the final 5 months - it became my decision to home ed him at that point - even though the statement was illegal.

To be honest, most LAs don't actually care if you home ed a SEN child. Your child's education becomes your problem, not theirs. Out of sight, out of mind.

racetothebottom Thu 12-Sep-13 11:23:20

Thanks for your response. I don't want to discuss the detail too much but school has completely that they are not a suitable educational environment for him.

A meeting with school and all professionals agreed that he should be educated at home so school don't want this package.

It is not necessarily an interim on the way to somewhere else.

TOWIELA Thu 12-Sep-13 11:28:50

Good luck - I really do hope you get what you need. If I hadn't 'won' the indie ss placement, then we would have continued to home ed.

racetothebottom Thu 12-Sep-13 11:30:31

That should be "school has completely agreed"

KeepOnKeepingOn1 Thu 12-Sep-13 11:30:35

When is the AR? Will you be appealing placement?

If the TA is from m/s (and you are requesting Indi ss) LA will gather evidence from her that DS can cope in m/s. So will an LA tutor but you have more chance of finding a tutor that not only helps in the present but will provide written evidence if she thinks m/s would be wrong.

I would imagine that they are trying to trap you into applying more force to get DS into school - surely you want him to return to school? (which the LA will do even if you are going to tribunal and are appealing part 4).

racetothebottom Thu 12-Sep-13 11:33:57

We are not home educating. My son is still on the school roll because he cannot be removed by school as there are no legal grounds for them to do this.

I have not de-registered him as the LA will just leave us to it.

School wanted the LA to sort out provision for him out of school so that he could be disenrolled. They supported our request for home tutoring.

LA say he must stay on roll and a TA be sent out and will not pay for tutors.

racetothebottom Thu 12-Sep-13 11:37:58

School absolutely do not agree with what LA are doing. LA is another county so they are not 'controlled' by them. They have been 100% supportive so far.

DS has never even met this TA. We have employed tutors ourselves and DS has started to work with them and is settled and happy.

I agree Keep - it is their way of looking like they are doing something and also putting pressure to get him back to school.

Yet what they are paying for him to be in school is more than the cost of tutors!

We are taking barrister's advice on judicial review.

KeepOnKeepingOn1 Thu 12-Sep-13 11:49:46

EOTAS is always temporary. It is always leading somewhere. The LA need a reintegration plan for the school currently named in part 4. I don't think there is an option for the LA to say that part 4 is not only wrong but that nowhere would be suitable. This is one of the reasons that parents are forced to deregister their child and HE.

Either parents have legal responsibility and can be prosecuted if absence is not authorised.

Or, if absence is authorised, the LA has legal responsibility.

What are the LA assessing?

KeepOnKeepingOn1 Thu 12-Sep-13 11:53:55

The school would not be able to remove him from the roll. On the contrary only DC on roll are entitled to LA funded tuition. It is law - the LA do not have a choice. I'll post a link when I am back on my computer.

racetothebottom Thu 12-Sep-13 12:10:11

Thanks. That is exactly my point.

As I have said - school cannot remove him from roll and we cannot register or we cannot get LA support.

However, it is not true to say home tutoring can only be on the basis that it leads back to a school. The education act does not say this. It can be a standalone package in its own right under s 319 of the Education Act.

There is no other school available to him - SS or m/stream - which is why they have to force him back.

Or else they are stuck with admitting there is nowhere else to put him.

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