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Can I name online school/online tuition on an EHCP?

(27 Posts)
KeepOnKeepingOn1 Thu 01-Sep-16 10:42:39

flowers to those who have offered support so far and I am sorry I am so bad at accepting help

I can't bear the thought of DS2 returning to school next week (going into year 6).

I haven't posted for a while - I am totally burnt out.

I have already been to Tribunal and it has made fuck all difference. Actually, strike that - the school have become even more aggressive and seem to be acting against DS2's best interests in a perverse manner. I am sick of weekly phone calls to the LA to get them to intervene to force the school to do what it should be doing.

But the final straw is the complete failure of the school to enable/increase engagement. They have refused to actually put in the support/scaffolding necessary to enable engagement but, in order to make it appear that they are doing something, and that progress is being made, actually end up rewarding disengagement. DS2 told me that it was easy to get rewards at school (as opposed to home) because he didn't have to do anything different! So much for behaviour modification angry

I have only been using our established token reward system for 1:1 working at home. Over the summer I have been using it for staying on task independently and have discovered that the 5 minutes baseline reported by the school is a load of bollocks. It takes about half an hour of 1:1 support and prompting for him to suddenly have sufficient engagement to carry on working for a minute or so if I leave the table (but not the room), building it gradually so that I am further away etc.

The school have been allegedly using the TRS for independent working but have sabotaged it angry. He is supposed to have 1:1 to enable him to start work and then build up time engaged using the TRS. The school have dispensed with the support to start work and so he does not start work. However, they reward him as if he has and/or they falsify records. So in one lesson, the record states that he received 4 rewards for staying on task for 20 minutes but his workbook is blank (the date and title written by the TA). They have broken the link between action and reward. I can't express how angry this makes me.

Whilst working on continuous writing with him he was outraged that he was expected to write approx 12 short sentences/about 150 words in 25 minutes on 2 subjects he said he found easy (describing his house and how to boil an egg). He said that he never has to write 6 sentences at school and that he couldn't do it sad angry I reminded him that he has been able to do this since year 2, that he could do it, I believed in him etc. After some time he sat down and did it, neat legible handwriting with spaces and everything. I still had to use a TRS to motivate him and of course, his interpretation of 'vivid' meant the house was gigantic, the windows were amazing, the doors were brilliant and the carpets and rugs were tremendous grin and he described how to make fried egg with sausage and toast (which he prefers).

But it means that he can do stuff, with the right support. The school will never give it. The LA are now saying that maybe he has reached his limit at 5 minutes attention span, the Judge at tribunal said 'what do you expect - he is autistic', autism outreach want me to lower expectations to 'struggle to attain average' despite 'very superior' cognitive ability. I've had enough.

I know the LA prefer us to go away and electively HE but I have just, ironically, been approved a Personal Budget (direct payment) for DS1 for home tutoring and counselling. The LA fund SALT and OT at home for him as well. He has been out of school since January 2015 and this is following initiation of JR so not the LA choice (they preferred to do nothing).

Sorry this is so long and I have so many questions. Has anyone had online school named? Is the DC then on the roll of the online school? Will the LA then pay the fees? How can I not send DS2 back to the school from hell whilst the LA decide? If, I have to deregister what will happen to his statement/EHCP? Can I not send him back and call an emergency review?

PolterGoose Thu 01-Sep-16 18:47:13

Sorry it's still awful flowers

I have no idea on the legal stuff but hopefully someone will be along. I think inappropriatelyemployed had a funded home ed programme but she doesn't post any more.

You'd think LAs would bite the hands off anyone wanting an Internet school named, it's a lot cheaper.

BuffySENsational Thu 01-Sep-16 20:45:53

flowers no advice I am in a similar but different situation and dreading next week as I fear prosecution. I have read many threads over the last couple of months and people have had internet schools and salt/oh named on statements/ECHP. I can't remember how they did it but it has been done.

I will post on a FB group I am in and see if I can get an answer for you. Hang on in there keep I have followed your story and wanted you to know you are not alone in this mad crazy pile of shit we are drowning in X

zzzzz Thu 01-Sep-16 21:24:31

Try phoning the online school of your choice. The one I am familiar with does have la funded children so should be able to advise.

Ineedmorepatience Thu 01-Sep-16 22:26:20

I think you might get some help on a closed facebook group for this. Try "Home educating your special needs child" or there is one about dealing with LA's that I will find the name for.

Ineedmorepatience Thu 01-Sep-16 22:32:20

"Home education and your Local Authority: help dealing with officialdom".

KeepOnKeepingOn1 Fri 02-Sep-16 06:56:08

Thanks all. I'll check out the closed FB group.

I have spoken to some online schools that say that they have DC with EHCPs whose fees are paid by the LA but they said the same stuff as indi ss - will have to fight, probably need solicitors etc - which is ridiculous given that some have annual fees that are less than AWPU for upper primary.

DH is panicking about the legal stuff and has a call back booked with Coram. What will happen if I don't send him back but don't deregister him? Should I sign him up for online school before the LA agree and pay fees myself (best way to show tribunal that progress is possible?)? I can't get the GP to sign him off as DS2 would happily go back to school because he does not know that his primary have not taught essential pre-learning skills and have set him up to fail at secondary.

youarenotkiddingme Fri 02-Sep-16 09:03:43

Sorry to hear it's still shit keep

Could you use what you've done as evidence? Show the empty book and rewards and show what input you give and outcomes?

I can't help with Internet school etc.

All I'd say is that having had this fight myself and finally getting Ds moved (well a MM trial) I wonder if a different school would help? Would secondary be any different? It might be worthwhile starting looking at secondary schools now so you know how long HE realistically may last iyswim?

KeepOnKeepingOn1 Fri 02-Sep-16 12:49:56

Fact packed site. According to the new SENCOP there are 2 different types of HE - the traditional elective one plus one where the LA and the parents agree following Tribunal and/or JR that provision is delivered at home and where funding is provided through a Direct Payment.

I expect that the LA will say that the named school can meet need and that the parents chose to take their child out of a suitable school. But this does not mean that they won't agree to fund HE/online tuition eventually because there is a written paper trail relating to non-delivery of provision and there is plenty of evidence of a break-down in relations and the worsening of communication (refusing to share reports of SALT/OT) since the head banned all communication with the SENCO and 'took over'. But they won't agree unless they have to.

I plan to call an emergency review. The LA had already suggested AR and transfer to EHCP in the autumn term. If the amended still names the school I will have right of appeal and go back to tribunal. This will take most of year 6. I don't want him attending the school whilst waiting. I also want to keep open the possibility of being at home for a year and then starting at MS secondary in year 7 - if he has learned to work independently. Hence internet 1:1 tuition. But if he is not able to reintegrate in year 7, I want the LA to be responsible for meeting the cost of 'internet school' on the basis that there is no alternative school that could meet need. If I knew it was definitely only going to be for a year I would happily wave goodbye and good riddance to the LA and deregister him to electively HE (even if, morally, I would find this hard to accept as we have been effectively driven out of the school).

In addition to school evidence I also have evidence from his 11+ tuition. He has no problem academically and past papers are scored between 74% and 97% with 1:1 support, prompting and reward but crashes to less than 10% in a mock exam situation - even when taking into consideration special measures sad

Am I allowed to take him out of school pending agreement being reached (even if this takes 6+ months) without deregistering him? Is this why you fear prosecution buffy?

Melawati Fri 02-Sep-16 16:50:29

Not sure how relevant this is to your situation, but I was advised during our Ehcp process that I must not deregister DD voluntarily as it would let the LA off the hook completely (deemed to be electively HE). So in your position I would get legal advice before considering deregistering.

Ineedmorepatience Fri 02-Sep-16 17:12:21

I agree with Mel we were told the same, if we wanted funding of any kind not to de register!

We ignored the advice in the end because we decided to take some time out which is what we are doing but we have EHE named on Dd3's statement!

Ineedmorepatience Fri 02-Sep-16 17:14:45

Also Fiona from Ed Yourself is really helpful, if you email her she will get back to you smile

Runningtokeepstill Sat 03-Sep-16 11:34:35

Am watching this with interest as my ds might be in the same position, re: further education, if college don't get their act together this year.

Our LA has said HE via EHCP is something they "don't do"/"unheard of" but then they would wouldn't they. They also said no EHCP if no learning difficulties but seem to have dropped this stance after I emailed the relevant section of sencop. So if it's like our area (or we're in the same LA) then I think you're in for a fight, sadly.

Currently we're working on getting the FE college to step up and support ds. Unfortunately everyone we know or have heard of with similar health issues has ended up leaving this college due to unhelpful attitudes and lack of relevant support. What happened last year was, I believe, bad enough for him to be able to sue for disability discrimination but it's not a route he wants to pursue at the moment.

I agree deregistering would be a mistake. Ds's first secondary school was always trying to get us to HE so they didn't have to make any kind of effort to support him. It's better to keep your ds on roll and then explain why he isn't going in. Whilst he's on roll the LA have to be involved.

KeepOnKeepingOn1 Sat 03-Sep-16 14:13:38

OK - I will not deregister him smile

After several sleepless nights and worrying myself inside out, I finally spoke to DS2. It turns out that he thinks internet tuition is a good idea and prefers that to going to the school he was at! He was actually enthusiastic and looking forward to studying what he wanted to and at his pace - even if he did have to study the core curriculum he was so pleased to learn he could do this in 6 hours a week instead of 6 hours a day and that this would leave plenty of time to do what he really wanted to do. He was inspired enough to dust of Vex and design a robot! (muttering to himself that his kit was really good and wondering why he didn't pay with it more).

I want to lie down and cry blush I am so relieved that he also believes this is the right thing for him - the thought of making a life changing catastrophic mistake - for someone else - is rather paralysing.


PS - running SENDIASS told us that no-one in my LA had a Personal Budget Direct Payment - they do now!! DS1 has had DP for tuition and counselling. He also has 1 hour per week direct SALT and OT therapy at home per week - OT with PG sensory integration training. SOS!SEN had to start JR proceedings though to get that provision whilst out of school and to complete transfer to EHCP from Statement. DP approved with no fuss whatsoever - really just a short email to SNO/EOTAS saying we wanted to apply because you have been crap and we could not possibly do worse - I am paraphrasing but not much grin.

BuffySENsational Sat 03-Sep-16 23:10:33

I have just received a msg from a closed FB page I am a member of and the answer was yes an Internet or OTAS can be named on an ECHP your LA may not want to name one though..... X

KeepOnKeepingOn1 Sun 04-Sep-16 06:59:43

Thanks Buffy

I suspect that the challenge will start with trying to get the Statement transferred to EHCP. With DS1 they really wanted to cease to maintain the Statement, arguing that it was worthless now and that everything had changed and trying to argue that it was parental choice to home ed. Whilst DS1 still had a Statement they abandoned the transfer and so ignored requests for DP. It took JR for them to resume the transfer. I returned my comments on the draft 3 months ago and still have not received the final. It may have been delayed because the LA made a final attempt in the draft to claim that parents had not requested DP. This was corrected in the comments and so the request had to go to panel. I am assuming this was the reason for delay but am not sure as the LA have ignored all phone calls and emails.

Does anyone know if you can still have DP if the child still has a Statement? There is no equivalent of para 10.31 in the old SENCOP and so, strictly speaking, LA and parents can't agree SEN HE as there is the assumption that all HE is elective.

Also, this was the last possible moment for transfer as statutory deadlines mean that year 6 pupils have to be transferred before transition to secondary. How is this affected by his not attending school during year 6? Should I point out that it is hoped that he will be able to attend year 7 in MS?

user1471537877 Mon 05-Sep-16 10:35:37


our daughter has an EHCP for Interhigh which the LA currently fund via our local PRU so yes it can be done

KeepOnKeepingOn1 Mon 05-Sep-16 12:30:52

User - is that without direct payment then? How many hours tuition do you get? Do your LA limit tuition at home to 5 hours per week? Have to attend PRU for more hours?

user1471537877 Mon 05-Sep-16 12:57:49

No, DD has never set foot in the PRU she attends Interhigh full time and the LA provide funding via the PRU

We have a once a term or less visit by a PRU support worker and the PRU pays Interhigh directly we have no financial involvement

I am told it is pretty unique but has now been running for 18 months

KeepOnKeepingOn1 Mon 05-Sep-16 16:13:21

DS1 has just had direct payment for home f2f tuition, this term for a maximum of 5 hours per week. He previously declared internet school to be the worse idea ever but this maybe an easier route if it becomes absolutely clear that we won't return to indi ss (the LA have already agreed to fund but I can't get him in).

Is your DD secondary age? DS2 is still year 6 which seems to limit options. Do interhigh only take DC from year 7 onward?

user1471537877 Mon 05-Sep-16 16:32:56

Yes DD is in year 9, inter is secondary but have a look at Briteschool which I believe is primary

KeepOnKeepingOn1 Mon 05-Sep-16 17:02:35

Yes, I have spoken to Briteschool and they have spoken of LAs paying fees. I expect this is direct and so overcomes the problem that DS2 has not yet had his Statement transferred to EHCP.

We had our first day today until tutors are found. His last 'lesson' at 1.30 was VEX robotics. He is still at it 3 hours after the 'lesson' ended grin

user1471537877 Mon 05-Sep-16 17:31:16

Fabulous! Not all of our children are fitted to a standard education it doesn't mean they can't be awesome in the right setting grin

KeepOnKeepingOn1 Mon 05-Sep-16 19:07:51

Still at it!!

DS1 has now joined in and wants to pick up and move cubes with the Clawbot which DS1 has now built!!

PolterGoose Mon 05-Sep-16 19:29:21

How fantastic Keep smile

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