Here some suggested organisations that offer expert advice on SN.

Is this normal? Feel like health needs are being minimized

(9 Posts)
elliejjtiny Tue 12-Jul-16 02:19:03

DS4 (age 3) had his family service plan meeting yesterday. His SN are mostly health related and he has had 11 general anaesthetics, including 2x major 3 hour operations. He also has speech problems and global development delay.

Meeting was organised by the area senco who I don't know really, just see her once a year at meetings. The paediatrician wasn't invited (I asked for them to invite her next time) and they mostly talked about preschool and his speech delay. Is this normal, to barely mention health stuff at a meeting like that?

They also said that I need to get him to socialise more with NT children to help his language as most of the other children he knows all have SN. They said that there is no way he would get an EHCP or be able to go to the special needs school, but that he's already getting SN funding and hopefully that will continue and he will get a funded 1-1 at school next year.

Is this normal to not really consider his health needs at meetings?

JudyCoolibar Tue 12-Jul-16 10:30:35

I suppose it depends on the purpose of the meeting. However, if your son's SN are mostly health-related it does sound odd and a bit pointless to have a meeting without medics present as I suspect his future prognosis is bound to impact on his education.

I have to say it sounds utter rubbish to say that a child with global developmental delay would not get an EHCP, and I suspect they were trying to put you off applying. It might be worth applying for an EHC assessment now with a view to having an EHCP in place by the time he starts school - if they agree he needs 1-1 all the time I would have thought it's unavoidable. It could be worth phoning SOS SEN for further advice about that.

elliejjtiny Tue 12-Jul-16 12:21:36

Thankyou. The cynical part of me thought they were trying to make his needs seem less and give him less support by trying to ignore the most severe of his needs. At the moment he is having lumbar punctures every 4 months, appointments with the neurosurgeons at a hospital 1.5 hours drive away every 6 months. I'm worried that a mainstream school will be moaning about his attendance.

The special school looks like such a lovely, nurturing place where the children do amazing stuff like horse riding, swimming etc on a regular basis. They seem to be treated more as individuals too. They do plays where all the children take part. In the mainstream school they get the children with more severe sn to dress up as father Christmas and say "ho ho ho, merry Christmas" at the end so they are not actually in the play at all. I want DS4 to be nurtured and accepted for who he is, not unceremoniously shoved into the wrong shaped hole and expected to conform.

It was the ed psych who said that there is no way that he would get into ss and he would "do marvellously" in mainstream. She is leaving before the next meeting in November so I need to go in ready to do battle with the next one. I'm hoping having the pead present will help as well.

NoHaudinMaWheest Fri 15-Jul-16 11:02:00

I think the default position is to say a child won't get an EHCP. However your ds has clear needs in several areas so I can't see how the LA could refuse to assess. I would apply myself. SOSSEN and IPSEA websites give clear instructions on how to do it.

NoHaudinMaWheest Fri 15-Jul-16 11:04:54

And yes a family service plan meeting is surely supposed to be the joined up thinking one so it makes no sense to ignore significant medical needs.
I have started doing an outline of the dcs needs for these meetings myself so that stuff doesn't get missed off the agenda. Just bullet points and then updated each time.

elliejjtiny Mon 18-Jul-16 23:40:22

Thankyou. I found out by accident that the HV hadn't been invited when she asked me to attend an appointment with her at the time of the meeting. So I had my suspicions that there would be other people not invited and I wrote a list of them all which I read out at the meeting. I thought they would have invited his paediatrician though. I also brought his beads of courage with me to show in a simple, visual way how much medical stuff he has gone through.

I wasn't sure whether to accept what the ed psych said about the ehcp or to fight. I keep thinking about how bewildered and lost he's going to feel in mainstream next year and that his classmates will assume he's just "naughty". It would be like if someone took my 5 year old out of reception class, made him a lot taller and then put him with his older brother in year 5.

According to his last assessment in preschool his development is about the same as a 13 month old's. I think that isn't quite right and he is more like an 18 month old but either way he is still way behind other children his age.

Ineedmorepatience Tue 19-Jul-16 10:08:20

The legal test for an EHC needs assessment is that the child has or may have SEND or that the child needs provision over and above that which is normally available!

Sounds to me like by giving him funding for 1:1 they are admitting that he has SEND and that he needs provision not normally available!

I would do a parental request for an EHC needs assessment if I were you!

Good luck 💐

elliejjtiny Tue 19-Jul-16 18:14:41

Thankyou. They have said that he should get "high needs funding" I think it's called. We're in Somerset and an ehcp is usually only given to children who will go to special school (is it still pc to call them that?) I know of a few children who were getting high needs funding but the parents kept fighting for an ehcp. As soon as they were granted an ehcp they were moved out of mainstream school. We have another meeting in November. I'll make sure the paed gets invited, meet the new ed psych and then push for an ehcp.

NoHaudinMaWheest Wed 20-Jul-16 23:21:32

We are in next county and I kept being told that EHCPs were only for Specia Schools. That is legally incorrect and the LA did back track when I challenged it. (We still didn't get an EHCP but dd's needs were not as great and actually with additional funding school were able to meet them.)

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