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How many of you TEACHERS are supporting parents that are being shafted? Please sign in!

(32 Posts)
Starchart Thu 30-Jun-11 18:25:59

SEN Green Paper consultation - last day!

Wonder how many responses we'll get?

Hopeful though!

huffythethreadslayer Thu 30-Jun-11 18:28:49

Can you summarise the main objections to the paper? The Government always manage to make this things sound so vanilla and lovely, when actually the changes proposed are often insidious. If you can highlight what it actually means to you, I'll happily add my support (not a teacher, just a TA who specialises in SEN).

Starchart Thu 30-Jun-11 18:32:44

Support and aspiration: A new approach to special educational needs and disability proposes:

a new approach to identifying SEN through a single Early Years setting-based category and school-based category of SEN;

a new single assessment process and Education, Health and Care Plan by 2014;

local authorities and other services will set out a local offer of all services available;

the option of a personal budget by 2014 for all families with children with a statement of SEN or a new Education, Health and Care Plan;

give parents a real choice of school, either a mainstream or special school; and

introduce greater independence to the assessment of children’s needs

Starchart Thu 30-Jun-11 18:35:37

Quoting another poster:

In my opinion, for what its worth, one of the big issues is the need to separate the assessment from the body funding the provision; the LA should not be both judge and jury as this creates a clear conflict of interest.

There needs to be some means other than Judicial Review to force a LA to provide the provision in the Statement, when they are just blatantly ignoring it, and stringing parents along with endless excuses.

SENDIST should be able to make an award of costs against LAs that act unreasonably, such as by issuing illegal Statements, that do not quantify and specify the provision to be made. This would be far more effective in reaching an agreement before Tribunal than the proposed compulsory mediation.

The whole system needs to be policed effectively; at the moment it is left up to parents to take on the LAs that act unlawfully and issues illegal Statements and it is an uneven battle, with the odds stacked against parents.

TheNinjaGooseIsOnAMission Thu 30-Jun-11 19:01:50

hopeful bump smile

cricketballs Thu 30-Jun-11 19:17:14

for the record (maily due to the title of the thread being sarcastic...) I am a teacher who has a DS who has SEN; attends a special school on a full statement, so please don't be thinking that teachers are not aware of the issues surrounding assessment etc especially as we all teach children whom we KNOW should have support but are not given it

Starchart Thu 30-Jun-11 19:21:41

Well for the record, I agree with the strike, but pensions issues do appear minor compared with our children's life chances.

I would probably even throw money at a teacher's strike over the appalling state of SEN provision! Teachers did used to strike about such things.

HarrietJones Thu 30-Jun-11 19:40:01

Afaik teachers are only allowed to strike about terms & conditions and not the actual work.

mrz Thu 30-Jun-11 19:40:37

then they changed the law

Starchart Thu 30-Jun-11 21:19:46

Well this is pretty sad.

mrz Thu 30-Jun-11 21:22:11

as a Senco I've already responded to the consultation

Starchart Thu 30-Jun-11 21:24:01

Thank you mrz. I expected you to.

Sad that there is only you though.

Starchart Thu 30-Jun-11 21:47:44

So sad sad

brambleschooks Thu 30-Jun-11 21:53:08

Another senco who has already responded. Also parent of two children with sen.

MmeLindor. Thu 30-Jun-11 21:59:00

Starchart
I think that if you had used a less provocative title, and perhaps explained a bit more clearly in your OP what exactly it is that you are protesting about, more people would have responded.

As I understand it, the Government are proposing changes to the SEN provisions in schools?

You have to remember that those of us without children with SENs are not familiar with the abbreviations and jargon that is used on this thread.

Can you tell me what it is, and what you hope that MNetters will do?

Starchart Thu 30-Jun-11 22:06:44

Thank you Mme Lindor, but I suspect with an less provocative title there would be even less responses than there are. I'm sorry if I have misjudged but my experience is that SEN topics generally get skipped over unless emotive somehow.

The 18:32 post sets out the proposals in brief.

The post above suggests a model that could make things easier for parents and Local Authorities more accountable directly rather than playing an ugly game that traps teachers and schools in the middle of an LA/Parent war.

It would also ensure that those who assess the child's needs are independent and have no ulterior motive for understating the need or provision requirements.

Thank you for posting.

MmeLindor. Thu 30-Jun-11 22:17:41

I am not being obtuse, but I truly find it difficult to understand.

I have no experience, so I don't know what the current system is and what are the changes that would make life for you and other parents harder.

SENDIST - I don't know what that is.

You write, eg. that parents should be given a real choice of schools. That they wish to introduce greater independence to the assesment of childrens' needs. That sounds good to me, but there must be a problem there?

I also have no idea what I am supposed to do with the link. How can I register an objection when I have no idea what I am supposed be objecting to.

Starchart Thu 30-Jun-11 22:25:36

SENDIST is the legal body that parents can appeal to if they are unhappy with the contents of their child's statements. Whilst it is supposed to be a last resort, Local Authorities use it to ration provision as there are no consequences for forcing a parent to tribunal, even with cast iron evidence. However, the LA save 6 months of funding the provision for that child and forcing the parents to fund expert witnesses and possibly legal expenses.

I am not asking anyone to object to anything. The consultation has questions which you can answer using your integrety.

huffythethreadslayer Fri 01-Jul-11 08:13:20

I support a trio of boys with special needs at the local primary, but have very little knowledge about the process that leads to statements being given and the processes parents must follow. I know the issues from a layman's point of view, but the government paper means nothing to me. I don't understand what the previous system was, so can't understand what the changes mean.

I am always keen to support my boys and know that they are not always serviced well by the education system...but I don't know enough to help. If anyone can explain what the changes mean and what I can do to help, I'll do it.

I think that these kids are too often swept under a carpet in mainstream schools and teachers are left to decry 'they're in the wrong place' when actually, they're just not being given the degree of support they need in the place they're in. That sucks...(not very eloquent I know, but it's early morning!).

cricketballs Sat 02-Jul-11 19:09:54

I would disagree with you 100% huffy on your last statement. Some children are not best served in a mainstream school no matter the amount of support they recieve.

As I have already stated, I have a child who attends special school and I fully hand on heart agree that this is the best enviroment for him. They have staff (teachers and support staff) who are specialised for supporting his needs. As a mainstream teacher, I have the training for supporting students with different needs but not for extreme needs as many SEN children may have. I also have 29 other children to teach.

How fair is it that a child does not recieve the support they need just to ensure that they are in mainstream education? There are only so many people to go help (and there will be even less if the government have their way, but that is a different arguement). I have taught children who are in the 'wrong place' and they were not having any of their needs met, not learning, just surviving in a cruel world.

mrz Sat 02-Jul-11 19:19:37

I agree with cricketballs there are some children who's needs can't be met in mainstream schools simply because we don't have the resources or expertise that is available in special schools.
As a SENCO it would be wonderful if I could match what is available but I can't. I struggle to get OT, PT, SaLT into school. I don't have sensory rooms or therapy pools. I don't have the staffing ratios. I don't have the same funding per statemented child as a special school receives. Make no mistake inclusion saves the government money. BUT most SEN children can do well in mainstream schools, many thrive because staff and parents work hard to make sure they do!

Adair Sat 02-Jul-11 19:35:43

My MP has been very vocal about her concerns here.

What mrz said re funding and mainstream. By and large, I think inclusion is better for children (both SEN and not).

Adair Sat 02-Jul-11 19:36:05

Oops my MP is Stella Creasy!

mrz Sat 02-Jul-11 20:08:29

I think inclusion is best for the majority of children but not for every single child and individual needs should be considered

Adair Sat 02-Jul-11 21:19:52

Yes, that's what i meant (but reading back not what I said hmm)

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