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School not providing what is on IEP.

(190 Posts)
FatherSpodoKomodo Sat 15-Jun-13 22:28:38

DS1 is year 1 and nearly 6. I was shown his IEP in October and was told he would be doing Narrative therapy (continued from Reception) and would also be doing a Motor Skills programme. I didn't see his IEP at the March parents evening.

I found out last week that he has only done one session of the Motor Skills programme.

What happens when a school doesn't give the child what they said they would on an IEP? What is my next step?

insanityscratching Sun 16-Jun-13 07:27:01

Is the IEP based on a statement of SEN or is it an IEP where a child is considered at School Action or School Action Plus? If it's the former and the statement specifies that ds is to receive Narrative Therapy and a Motor Skills Programme daily/weekly etc then you can write to the LA to complain that your child isn't getting the provision detailed in his statement and the LA will force the school to comply so as to avoid legal action . If it's the latter then you haven't got any legal right to enforce the IEP.
What should you do? Ask the school to reinstate the therapies and consider writing to the LA to request that a statutory assessment is made of your child's needs so that it is clear what they are and what input he should be receiving. If the school aren't able to meet his needs from the resources then there is cause for a statement which will mean that you will have the legal right to ensure your child gets the support he needs.

mrz Sun 16-Jun-13 07:59:33

The new SEN code of practice is removing the school action and school action plus categories insanityscratching

insanityscratching Sun 16-Jun-13 08:05:56

Of course blush I was lucky that mine had statements before nursery and so didn't have to jump those hoops. I'm adopting ostrich mode though about the new policy at present seeing as my two are both in schools that are very able to meet their needs and I trust them to continue to do so.
I'd worry though if mine didn't have statements tbh.
What can a parent of a child without a statement do to ensure that their child's needs are met? It seems to me that you have to rely on a school's willingness and ability to provide what's needed .......and that would make me nervous.

ShadeofViolet Sun 16-Jun-13 08:08:40

What will replace it mrz?

mrz Sun 16-Jun-13 08:13:10

As a SENCO I'm worried too. I was told last week that a child identified by a whole spectrum of professionals as having profound difficulties won't get a statement because I've "done too good a job" of teaching him skills he can't apply without support! angry

mrz Sun 16-Jun-13 08:21:00

ShadeofViolet there is to be a single new category (yet to be defined) but the criteria for who qualifies as having SEN will be much tighter

mrz Sun 16-Jun-13 08:22:07

Schools will have to show that children aren't behind due to poor teaching or absenteeism for example

insanityscratching Sun 16-Jun-13 08:37:30

a child identified by a whole spectrum of professionals as having profound difficulties won't get a statement because I've "done too good a job" of teaching him skills he can't apply without support!
This is always worried me about having a child enter school with needs (autism for instance in dd and ds's case) and then the school have to jump through hoops to provide evidence of need. But if the school have done a good job the LA turns down the statement hmm.
Had dd started nursery before the statement was in place she wouldn't have got a statement (her EYFS was I think 113), she's intelligent and well behaved her statement ensures that she is also happy. Now in yr5 without the statement she wouldn't even be on school action we keep it though as the LA is incompetent and so don't reassess and her statement brings funding and an extra pair of hands in class 20 hours per week.

daftdame Sun 16-Jun-13 10:26:12

I believe the schools are being asked to manage the upfront 6K because there is a history, of schools playing the system in order to receive extra funds which distorts level of need.

If the child was coping with the lesser resource being channelled towards them they still suffered as their actual 'need' was being distorted (possibly with permanent implications) and schools had no incentive to address this issue.

If they were not coping it could be difficult for parents to ascertain what the problem was, not being able to very easily track what their child's funding was being spent on.

Doing it this way may enforce a cultural change concerning what a school can deal with at a base level. When you read about all this 'working to rule' from teaching unions it doesn't take much of a stretch of the imagination to see how the 'rules' would require more children, with even slightly delayed self care skills, be deemed special needs. Previously teachers (in my Aunt's generation) saw helping children with coats, wiping noses, the odd toilet accident etc as an important part of their job, as an Early Years Practitioner.There was problem of a child's funding not being spent on them which before this reform was extremely difficult to address.

Also the fact that a school has to show how much they have spent before extra resources are applied for prevent the exaggeration of needs just to receive extra funding (for the school).

I can see how this exaggeration of need happens. My LA lowered the amount of funding they delegated to schools simply because more schools were applying for statements. This meant more schools had to apply for statements (because there was less delegated funding), as a policy decision, which in turn in my opinion lowered the entry requirement for a statement, distorting the level of a child's additional need (when compared with national levels).

A statement seems to be universally understood as being indicative of a high level of need, yet not all authorities even attempt to require schools to quantify their provision subsequent to awarding the statement.

Instead they seem happy to work using vague matrices, in terms of severity of need, whilst the only aspect of need that is quantifiable is the money that has been spent or that needs to be spent. They have probably taken the view that the administration of monitoring provision would cost more. This is why they then buy in block provision in order to ensure some money actually is spent on Special Needs.

I therefore agree with the funding reform but believe there has to be further tightening up of regulations regarding admissions.

However I appreciate there are some horror stories, where schools say they cannot afford any more children with additional needs.What is needed is much more transparency.I therefore agree with the funding reform but believe there has to be further tightening up of regulations regarding admissions.

daftdame Sun 16-Jun-13 11:08:40

^ that is a history of a child's statemented funds not being spent solely on them, eg their designated 1 to 1 TA spends time supporting a group, covering the class with 1 other TA, doing photocopying / displays.

Plenty examples of this on the Special Needs boards.

I can see how it happens when teachers have a whole host of other pressures...

mrz Sun 16-Jun-13 11:56:45

Daftdame under the "old" statement SEN funding schools were often responsible for much much more than £6K per child. Speaking as the mother of a SEN child the worst thing for him would to have had a TA permanently hovering around him. Some children do need that level of support 24 hours a day but for many it makes them dependent and can actually be detrimental to the child

insanityscratching Sun 16-Jun-13 11:57:08

But will the changes mean that the statemented child's TA will now be even more pressured to pick up children who have needs but no statement?
FWIW I 'm not bothered at present that dd's TA supports other children in her class because dd doesn't in fact need the support her statement gives.
It is mutually beneficial to the school and myself that dd keeps her statement and so school provide the reports at the AR that support the need for the statement to be maintained and whilst ever dd is happy and progressing I don't point out that her TA covers various groups and children that dd isn't a part of because she is academically able.
If however dd was unhappy and not progressing dd's statement is specified and quantified to the nth degree with time built in for her TA to keep records and liaise with me that I would be able to force the school through the LA to account for each minute of her twenty hours support.
Unless a parent ensures that a statement is specified and quantified then really the statement isn't worth the paper it's written on.

daftdame Sun 16-Jun-13 12:29:12

mrz I understand (too well) a TA 'hovering' is not necessarily the best type of support. This would make it all the more galling if this kind of support has been reduced and the school did not reflect this at Annual Review time (because there was no quantification of support required by the LA.) This distorts the perception of need in my view.

insanity What happens now is that if the statement requires provision of over 6K, the school have to demonstrate they have spent 6K, and the LA tops up the rest. It is this demonstration that will require a 'high needs' statement's fund to be spent on the appropriate child, as demonstration of spending is required.

mrz Sun 16-Jun-13 12:40:45

At the moment it costs us about twice that from the school SEN budget to top up statements daftdame

insanityscratching Sun 16-Jun-13 12:47:28

Statements here are quantified by hours rather than funding but I'd say a 20 hour statement would cost significantly more than £6000. Ds's statement costs £60,000 pa as he is in independent specialist provision the LA fund all that direct to the school.
I'd imagine as dd is progressing 2 sub levels a year then that would be evidence of the support working even if in fact she is progressing without support.
Our LA haven't reassessed dd since her statement was secured at three, she hasn't seen an ed psych since she was 2 and a half. The reports to the LA at AR are written between school and myself, they have no idea what happens from one AR to the next. Are we going to see Inclusion Officers in schools monitoring the statemented child's support as I'd guess that would be the only way that an LA could determine that a child's statement was more costly than the £6000?
Doesn't the £6000 apply to statements secured under the new system? I thought "old" statements would be maintained as they are.

daftdame Sun 16-Jun-13 12:49:49

mrz Surely it would depend on the individual case.

There seems to be huge variation from authority to authority and school to school which is unfair because perceptions of a statement = high needs. It is plain to see that my LA's previous funding policy caused a distortion of the perception of need since it incentivised / increased the need for a statement (because delegated funds were reduced to this purpose.)

daftdame Sun 16-Jun-13 12:54:23

insanity Not as I understand it re. old and new system statements. 'Roll out' is not at all completer in our LA.

daftdame Sun 16-Jun-13 12:56:21

insanity It is estimated that the 6K will buy approx 12 hours 1 to 1 support per week. Forgot where I read this but makes sense.

insanityscratching Sun 16-Jun-13 12:58:19

In our LA statements are funded in full by the LA, schools are not obliged to fund any of the statemented hours of support from their own resources. That said schools have to jump through hoops to secure a statement for a child already in school but a parent who secures a statement before a child enters an educational establishment doesn't have to do any such thing.

daftdame Sun 16-Jun-13 13:03:18

insanity The funding reform promises more delegated funding to schools but they must fund the first 6K of SEN provision (and demonstrate they have done this) per child before 'high needs' funding is requested.

insanityscratching Sun 16-Jun-13 13:05:07

Hopefully by the time the LA come meddling then dd will have completed year six and I will most likely home ed from year seven because I can't find a suitable school and I wouldn't win at tribunal for independent specialist which is what I would want.

mrz Sun 16-Jun-13 13:06:59

In my LEA it is very difficult to get a statement (I'm continually amazed by posts on MN) with cuts to SEN budgets I'm not sure all schools will be in a position to support pupils effectively.

daftdame Sun 16-Jun-13 13:07:23

The LA seems to still have some choice re. delegated funding. Prior attainment, FSM figures can be used to determine whether to award schools less or more delegated funds.

daftdame Sun 16-Jun-13 13:09:59

mrz I find it very difficult to make a judgement.

Much more transparency is required nationwide before parents can truly know what is really going on.

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