This is a Premium feature
Statementing and LEA funding private schooling(9 Posts)
Does anyone have experience of getting their DS/ DD statemented and then successfully getting the LEA to fund specialist private education?
I'm particularly keen to hear off any parent with a child at More House Frensham or Shapwick in Somerset....
Kenn to know how long it can take, what to expect from LEA etc etc..
It does happen but very rarely. Getting an ehc plan will be one big issue, getting it to name a private school-very slim.
The onus would be on you to prove that the LA can't provide anything suitable. We got DS1 into the non-maintained specialist school sector in year 5 after years of not being able to cope in mainstream, despite a succession of interventions and having started school with a statement in place.
Have to agree with other posters that this will be difficult. Having looked at the websites for the two independent fee paying schools that you mention I think that it will be very difficult to convince the LA where you live to fund such school places. There will almost for sure be schools in the LA that they will deem are suitable for you child, assuming that you can get an EHCP and get them to agree to special school placement.
You have to go through the process of applying for an EHC Plan, and then you need to demonstrate that your child's needs cannot be met in a mainstream school even with the further funding that goes with an EHCP.
Have a look at the IPSEA and SOS SEN websites for more information, also the SN boards on MN. SOS SEN do some helpful booklets - www.sossen.org/shop/index.php?cPath=22
Our son was statemented (now an EHCP) from year 1in a state primary.
After considerable conflict with the school and the local authority we won at tribunal to have him funded to attend Fairley House School in Pimlico. The fees were in the region of £30,000 a year.
That was some years ago, he's now 17 and I think things are even tougher now for kids with Spld and Sen. And tougher to navigate the system to tribunal.
It was a nightmare for us at the time!
Good luck if you face a similar battle.
Yes, but not at either of the schools you mention, OP. DS1 received full LA funding for his 1:1 support in private mainstream (I gather this is extremely unusual and it took quite a battle to get it) and is now fully funded by our LA at an independent specialist school in our county (via another big battle!).
I have a friend who’s been looking at More House for her boy. I think she said that around a third of the pupils there are LA funded and the others are privately funded (I may be wrong). In contrast, very nearly 100% of the pupils at my DS’s school are LA funded. I wonder if this is because it could be argued that More House typically takes pupils with slightly less ‘complex’ needs that could more likely have the pupil’s LA try to shoehorn them into mainstream.
As a pp said, it’s one thing successfully obtaining an EHCP but another thing altogether to convince your LA that your child’s needs can’t be met in mainstream. Or, for that matter, one of the LA’s own (and therefore cheaper) specialist schools. Good luck with your decision and the process! x
Be careful here as well. I work for an LA, and they do means test people who apply for this kind of stuff. You would surprised at the means (we're talking about 2 parents on £50k plus salaries here) people have and the level of contribution they requested.
What is your time scale and is the current school supportive of or actively applying for an EHCP.
You would then have to prove that no other maintained school would be able to meet the needs of your child. That’s very difficult to do. In my experience as a SENCo, it happened only once, with a boy who came to our mainstream secondary with a statement and it was very clear from the outset, that he would not manage mainstream, even with an SLCN unit that ours had.
It took eighteen months and much angst, for the LA to agree that he needed specialist provision and what type that needed to be. We had the support of every professional involved too. The costs of the placement and transport were extensive.
Please login first.