Mumsnetters aren't necessarily qualified to help if your child has special needs. If you have any serious concerns, we would urge you to consult your GP or other suggested organisations that offer expert advice on SN

Mumsnet/KIDS support session on special needs and education: THIS THURSDAY, 9pm

(111 Posts)
RowanMumsnet (MNHQ) Wed 23-May-12 09:45:54

Hello there,

We're pleased to announce that the second support session with members of KIDS staff will be held this Thursday evening between 9pm amd 10pm (in the hope that this will avoid most kids' bed-times!). The topic for Thursday's session will be education and related issues. (You can see the first session here.)

KIDS is a national charity working with disabled children, young people and their families across England. The KIDS staff at the session will be Sue Cawkwell (KIDS Regional Director for Yorkshire and Lincolnshire), and SEN specialists Rosemary Foster and Dave Lison.

The idea of these support sessions is to complement the advice and support that Special Needs posters already give each other with the insight and experience of people working for an organisation in the field. We hope that the session will pull together perspectives and advice from MNers and from KIDS staff, and that the thread will serve as a reference point for posters looking for advice about SEN.

It would be great to have as many of you as possible join us 'live' on Thursday evening, but if you can't make it, please also post up any advance questions for here.

We'd really appreciate your feedback on these sessions, so if you can find the time to fill in a survey after the session, that would be great - it's open to lurkers as well as posters - to everyone who has seen the thread.

Thanks,
MNHQ

SueCawkwell Thu 24-May-12 20:53:55

Hello mumsnetters

It's great to be invited back. There are three of us this evening but probably
just me typing (Sue) to avoid any confusion.

I'm Sue Cawkwell, regional director of KIDS and also a parent of three
children - two of my children have been through the statutory assessment
process. I've also worked during my career as a portage visitor and
a parent partnership coordinator.

Joining me this evening are Rosemary Foster and Dave Lison. Rosemary
and Dave both work for KIDS as parent partnership coordinators and have
had many years experience supporting families. Both Dave and Rosemary
have supported families' right through all stages of SEN processes including
SEND tribunals.

SueCawkwell Thu 24-May-12 20:56:58

Hi r3dh3d

Possibly the best solution is to wait for the next annual review, or if too far
away ask for an Interim Annual Review. Next ask the medical consultant to
give guidance to the school in writing as to your DD1's medicals needs and
what would constitute "being too ill for school"; this would then clarify for the
school and nurse your DD1's medical implication of attending the school, or
being sent home. A medical care plan should be in place to assist the school
to make medical decisions.

SueCawkwell Thu 24-May-12 20:59:10

Hello UnCharteredromaeosaur,

Arrange a meeting with the SENCo and the Head teacher, request the
presence at the meeting of the Ed Psych for the school, plus other professionals
that have given the diagnosis or who have given advice re the diagnosis; the
IEP could then be updated accurately. You might also want to provide the
SENCO with any information or reports you already have.

SueCawkwell Thu 24-May-12 21:00:21

Hello lisad123,

The process of obtaining a Statement of SEN can seem lengthy, but is clearly
laid out in the SEN Code of Practice. The local PPS team can help; you can
get a copy of the SEN COP free by telephoning 0845 60 222 60. The Local
Authority may have an area SENCo team who will have lots of information;
you can contact IPSEA national charity for information re any SEN, and legal
advice. Their advice line number 0800 018 4016.

SueCawkwell Thu 24-May-12 21:02:05

Hello everyone

Hi

SueCawkwell Thu 24-May-12 21:03:04

devientenigma

Not sure if I can make as bed time here is between midnight and 3am. Looking forward to reading about the green paper, from what I can gather this will suit us perfectly.

DS has always been special school from 2yo. He has always been reluctant for issues the profs refuse to acknowledge or accept. The bigger and stronger he has got the harder it is to get him there, hence him being at home 24/7 for the last 2 year.

He has a home tutor for up to an hour, 4 days per week, however all services (OT etc) are in turn letting him down, due to his low arousal level, passive but aggressive nature and his lack of motivation. In your words he lacks accountability!! Should this mean he is overlooked?!!

Another situation we are in is as he is still registered at his local authority special school he remains under the care of the pead there. They have rotated and the new one won't take DS on as he is not accessing school and the old one has discharged him. So now have none.

Hi Devientenigma

Pressumably your son has a statement of SEN? If so the LA still has a duty to ensure that all provision outlined within the statement is met. Have you had an annual review since this situation occurred? There is still a duty to hold annual reviews. At the annual review parents have a legal right to ask for amendments to the statement (Children and Families Act Sept 2010). This could included provision to meet the child's educational need through other services should this be necessary to promote access and progress.

PissyDust Thu 24-May-12 21:03:49

I'm very new to all of this, the school have asked for my DD to be referred as she is having real problems with making friends, being nice and general every day behaviour.

Our GP has made a referral and today I spoke with the school nurse who has said she will also make a referral.

Can anyone tell me what this actually means and what I should expect to happen in the next few months?

I'm scared and also relieved that DD might start getting some help from the school instead of constant detentions for behaviour that I think she really can't help.

SueCawkwell Thu 24-May-12 21:03:57

Hello HotheadPaisan,

Academies have to be regarded, in general, as independent schools. A recent
judgment at a tribunal said that if a parent requests an academy to be named
on their child's statement of SEN, they first have to get a letter from the
Academy to agree that they have a place and that they could meet the child's
needs. If the LA named the academy then the parent would have the right to
appeal to a tribunal if the academy didn't agree to the place. If a child does
not have a statement but has SEN, then parents need to get hold of a copy of
the Funding Agreement for the Academy from the DofE and look up what it
says re SEN at that particular Academy. Academies have to comply with DDA
legislation.

IPSEA, have looked at his statment have said it's useless and it's now on hold.

SueCawkwell Thu 24-May-12 21:05:04

PissyDust

I'm very new to all of this, the school have asked for my DD to be referred as she is having real problems with making friends, being nice and general every day behaviour.

Our GP has made a referral and today I spoke with the school nurse who has said she will also make a referral.

Can anyone tell me what this actually means and what I should expect to happen in the next few months?

I'm scared and also relieved that DD might start getting some help from the school instead of constant detentions for behaviour that I think she really can't help.

Hello Pissydust

Did they say who they were making a referral too?

SueCawkwell Thu 24-May-12 21:06:09

Hi Hothead

Have you seen the new publication by the CDC? CDC have just
published a special edition of their Bulletin which covers the proposed SEN
and Disability reforms, including:

A message from Sarah Teather, Minister for Children and Families, on
the reforms;

An answer from the Minister to the questions proposed to her by the
sector;

Information on the Queen's Speech;

An overview of Support and Aspiration: Next Steps and
Progress document; and

Information on the Children and Families Bill.

moosemama Thu 24-May-12 21:06:20

Hi,

On the Academies thing. If every single school in your area is an Academy, where does that leave you if all the schools refuse to take your child?

SueCawkwell Thu 24-May-12 21:06:53

devientenigma

IPSEA, have looked at his statment have said it's useless and it's now on hold.

I'm not sure what they mean by 'on hold'? It should be a current document and if it's out of date/no longer appropriate you definitely do need an annual review and potentially ask for a re assessment of your childs needs

SueCawkwell Thu 24-May-12 21:07:58

Hello ohmeohmy,

LAs have to publish all policies relating to SEN; it would be a good idea to ask
the LA for a copy of their SEN policy. Also if you're concerned, you might
want to ask for an Interim Annual Review, and seek relevant advice from
professionals to present to the review. LAs must have regard to many issues re. a child's progress, not just gaining attainment; a good counter-argument
would be "has the child made progress because of the help and care they've
received in a special school." They also need to take account of whether
the child would make better progress by moving placements, and the detrimental effect of losing friendships, resettling etc.

SueCawkwell Thu 24-May-12 21:10:37

moosemama

Hi,

On the Academies thing. If every single school in your area is an Academy, where does that leave you if all the schools refuse to take your child?

Hi Moosemama

Academies have a legal duty to accept children who fall within their published funding agreement. All academy funding agreements are available on the DofE website and all academies are legally bound to accept a wide range of children who have SEN needs. The disability discrimination act also would apply if academies were saying they wouldnt accept a child.

If a statemented child and all the schools are academies the LA would need to name on in part iv - if the academy refused admission you would have the right to appeal to tribunal

HotheadPaisan Thu 24-May-12 21:13:01

Thanks, why did the LA refuse to name do you know? This is going to restrict choice as more schools convert I think.

PissyDust Thu 24-May-12 21:14:50

Hi Sue I think they are looking at DD as having some form of aspergers.

I haven't really been told much, I just told them what DD is like and I don't know what sort of questions to be asking, DD's teacher asked me to see the nurse and our GP as DD is struggling with making friends and has some odd behavioural traits that are being picked up on (she has always been like this and we manage it well at home on 1:1)

SueCawkwell Thu 24-May-12 21:15:25

HotheadPaisan

Thanks, why did the LA refuse to name do you know? This is going to restrict choice as more schools convert I think.

Hello Hothead

Sorry I'm not aware of the full details. LA's are most likely not to name an academy, if they academy themselves put up a strong argument about not being able to meet the needs of a child

moosemama Thu 24-May-12 21:16:34

Oh, thanks.

Do you have a link to where I can find the funding agreements?

I am still confused though. There has been much in the press this week about certain academies flat out refusing to take children who have SENs and if this is upheld their families will have no right of appeal, because the academies are not answerable to the tribunal even if the LAs are. Is this just the older, first wave of academies with older funding agreements - or will this case open the floodgates for all academies to refuse children with SENs with no right of appeal? confused

HotheadPaisan Thu 24-May-12 21:17:19

Thanks for the CDC link, will be interesting to see how support to 25 pans out. The EHCPs look promising but they will only be any good if you can fund the support at a school of your choice. All local schools here will be Academies soon (secondary already is) and if they just don't want my child, and the LA would rather provide elsewhere, we're stuck.

SueCawkwell Thu 24-May-12 21:18:24

PissyDust

Hi Sue I think they are looking at DD as having some form of aspergers.

I haven't really been told much, I just told them what DD is like and I don't know what sort of questions to be asking, DD's teacher asked me to see the nurse and our GP as DD is struggling with making friends and has some odd behavioural traits that are being picked up on (she has always been like this and we manage it well at home on 1:1)

Hello PissyDust

They may have made a referral for your daughter to see an educational psychologist - or it could be for a muti agency assessment if they are thinking she might be on the autistic spectrum. You could try asking the school and or your GP for further information - who the referral is to, likely waiting times, what to expect etc.

SueCawkwell Thu 24-May-12 21:25:00

moosemama

Oh, thanks.

Do you have a link to where I can find the funding agreements?

I am still confused though. There has been much in the press this week about certain academies flat out refusing to take children who have SENs and if this is upheld their families will have no right of appeal, because the academies are not answerable to the tribunal even if the LAs are. Is this just the older, first wave of academies with older funding agreements - or will this case open the floodgates for all academies to refuse children with SENs with no right of appeal? confused

Sorry lost connection - here is the link

http://www.education.gov.uk/aboutdfe/foi/disclosuresaboutschools/a0065578/funding-agreements-for-academies

SueCawkwell Thu 24-May-12 21:27:49

HotheadPaisan

Thanks for the CDC link, will be interesting to see how support to 25 pans out. The EHCPs look promising but they will only be any good if you can fund the support at a school of your choice. All local schools here will be Academies soon (secondary already is) and if they just don't want my child, and the LA would rather provide elsewhere, we're stuck.

Hello Hothead

All academies have a duty to admit pupils with a range of needs and there is no intention for academies to be able to not admit children with SEN including those with statements. There is a complaints procedure for academies - will just look up the link for you

zzzzz Thu 24-May-12 21:30:49

What services are available to home educated children with sen?

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