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aspergers - too clever for a statement? please give me some advice, I don't know what to do about ds school (this is long, but please bear with me, I really need some help)

(41 Posts)
deaconblue Sat 11-Feb-12 07:30:09

Ds is 5. He had 15 hrs of funded support at pre school, largely because he hit other children a lot. At 4 we got a diagnosis of aspergers. In reception the school put in place 15 hours of TA support. He had a mature, experienced teacher who set really firm boundaries and he made massive progress, making proper friends and only having melt downs occasionally. The TA was used to keep an eye on ds rather than for one to one close support. This gave him some independence. At the end of reception he got a really good report.

He moved into yr 1 and in October last year I was told he had made such great progress he no longer needed TA hours or even an IEP. I was over the moon.
I've since discovered that the TA hours were removed due to a reduction in budget not ds' progress and his behaviour has been getting steadily worse in school. He is in a class of 26 children of 2 yr groups and the teacher is often left with no TA support at all, despite there being 5 other children with some level of SEN in her class. In the last 3 weeks ds has started hitting children again, has drawn on the furniture, thrown toys, refused to do his work and spent a lot of time in the head's office.

I had a long meeting yesterday with the head and ds' teacher (who is also the SENCO) and am really unhappy with how it went. The head began quite defensively, telling me that only children with a statement received any SEN funding. I replied that this was not true, every school gets an SEN budget to share among children on the register. Statemented children get EXTRA funding. Well, yes,she said, that is true. She said it was evident that as soon as ds arrived at the school that he had 'severe problems'. I then asked why I had been told he no longer needed an IEP, why they had never logged any behavioural incidents and why they hadn't sought the help of an Ed psych. I asked if a fundamental error had been made last year. "no I wouldn't say that' was her reply.

The upshot seems to be they won't (they say can't) give ds back the hours he had. The head said we need to get him a statement in order for support to be funded. I pointed out that even if he got a statement it was unlikely to be for more than the 14 hours necessary to get an extra funding. The senco then said that ds would need to be two levels behind his peers to get a statement anyway. He is 2 levels above in reading and maths and average in writing. They say they can't put any extra support in now because they need evidence of the poor behaviour for the statement application.

So we are trapped. They won't support him without a statement, therefore his behaviour will get worse. He won't get a statement because he is too clever and even if he did it probably wouldn't bring any more money into the school anyway. They have said they will try to get an Ed psych appointment but that could take months. I ended up tearful and despondent. We have agreed to meet in two weeks to discuss his behaviour again but I can't see the point.
Please can anyone give me some advice on where to go from here? For what it's worth his behaviour at home has continued to improve. We see a bright, funny little boy who would be coping with just a little extra help.

Lougle Sun 26-Feb-12 20:19:13

I am always baffled by how complicated people seem to make the statementing criteria. Schools tie themselves up in knots about it. Parents are misled either intentionally or unintentionally. It really isn't difficult confused

The SEN Code of Practice says:

"7:34 In deciding whether to make a statutory assessment, the critical question is whether there is convincing evidence that, despite the school, with the help of external specialists, taking relevant and purposeful action to meet the child’s learning difficulties, those difficulties remain or have not been remedied sufficiently and may require the LEA to determine the child’s special educational provision."

"8:12 If the statutory assessment confirms that the assessment and provision made by the school or early education setting is appropriate but the child is nonetheless not progressing, or not progressing sufficiently well, the LEA should consider what further provision may be needed and whether that provision can be made within the school’s or setting’s resources or whether a *statement is necessary.*"

In a nutshell:

The LA must do a Statutory Assessment if it is probable that the child will need a statement.

A statement is needed if:

The child is not making sufficient progress despite the best efforts of the school and the LA identifies provision that would enable that progress, which is beyond the school's resources (that could be either equipment or extra assistance from teaching staff, etc.)

There is nothing there about academic ability - it is sufficient progress.

deaconblue Sun 26-Feb-12 20:41:30

I think the key phrase for us is the bit about 'despite the school's efforts and external support'. I think if we tried for a statement now the lea would point out that the school has done very little to support ds and has only recently asked for external help.

Bonkerz Sun 26-Feb-12 20:49:12

I had this problem with DS (apologies I haven't read other replies). You need a statement for your sons behaviour. My DS was/is aggressive and his behaviour prevented him from accessing the curriculum. Despite this my DS was intelligent and still managed to stay top of his class. He is classic intelligent autistic with severe emotional an behavioural
Issues. Keep fighting. I won a 32 hour statement for DS and he now attends a private school for autistic children mainly because by age 8 his aggression was I controllable despite 1:1!

If your lea are saying your DS cannot have a statement because it's not academic that is a blanket statement and illegal. Statements can be academic or behavioural.

cheekymouse Thu 12-Sep-13 12:17:06

I've just found this post! My daughter is 13, diagnosed as Aspergers, but the school won't statement her. It's always been said that because she is doing so well academically, she doesn't need statementing! She is now refusing to go to school as she says they are not giving her the help she needs sad Her anxiety levels in crowds are now very high.
I am lost! She is emotionally exhausted.

Igottaproblem Thu 12-Sep-13 19:37:48

Hello, the ipsea link on how to get a statement mentioned up thread is really helpful.
You can apply yourself and get the ball rolling.

Igottaproblem Thu 12-Sep-13 19:38:47

Sorry should say "how to apply for assessment for a statemet"

Goldmandra Fri 27-Sep-13 17:25:50

I think the key phrase for us is the bit about 'despite the school's efforts and external support'. I think if we tried for a statement now the lea would point out that the school has done very little to support ds and has only recently asked for external help.

If you apply for a statutory assessment and the LA decide that the school could do more from within their own resources they can issue a document detailing what support the child should have. The school is then expected to implement that support and, if no progress is made, a statutory assessment request can be made again.

cheekymouse I have two DDs who have AS, are advanced academically but still have statements. The crucial thing is that your DD cannot have access to the curriculum if she can't attend school. Tell your SENCo that they need to either start meeting her needs or apply for a statutory assessment for on social and emotional grounds. If they won't do either you can apply for the statutory assessment and the LA will call the school to account.

KeepOnKeepingOn1 Tue 01-Oct-13 11:51:52

I think it is worth noting that the NHS Map of Medicine care path recommends statementing for ASD but not for other conditions such as ADHD. With regard to ASD (there is no such thing as AS anymore):

"•needs should be documented in a statement of special educational needs (SEN):
•the local education authority should provide for the needs identified in this statement
•the child’s progress can be reviewed through an individual education plan
•approaches that focus on social functioning should be introduced as an on-going intervention strategy from early years to adulthood

•inclusion of children with ASD in mainstream schools:
◦some children cope with good support
◦some studies have found that social isolation, loneliness, and bullying are commonplace for pupils with ASD who attend mainstream schools"

Also look at the DfE stats of how many children with different diagnoses have statements or are on SA+.

pinkbunny2012 Tue 08-Oct-13 13:23:50

I am going through a similar situation at the moment, except my daughter is starting school next year and she is currently at a sen nursery and they are reluctant to statement her, even though she is on the waiting list for an autism diagnosis, I have since found out that I don't need them to put forward a statement and that I can do it myself, if you type in statement gov into google and go on to the official government website u can download the form and send it off to ur local authority and they have to do a statutory assessment. So just do it urself, and if he still doesn't get a statement then appeal it, hope this helps xxx

Goldmandra Tue 08-Oct-13 14:39:11

pinkbunny they don't have to do a statutory assessment. They have to consider whether it would be appropriate to do a statutory assessment and ask the school or Early Years setting for evidence of progress and current levels of support. They then have to inform you of that decision and any other action they consider appropriate to ensure your child has the support he or she needs.

If they choose not to do a statutory assessment you can, of course, appeal and take them to a tribunal so they need to have a good reason to refuse.

sophj100 Wed 13-Nov-13 15:09:47

My 5 year old, also ASD / poss Aspergers and a big hitter / poker etc., started Reception this September and his Statement was turned down. He is very bright, reads and writes already but no actual knowledge of what a lot of the words mean. I appealed to a Tribunal for the Statement decision to be overturned and after a few months, the LA have overturned their decision and awarded it - this morning, in fact. With the IEP and 'Action Plus' provided by the school, this added weight to my own letter of request and reasons why the help was needed.

I agree, you need to appeal their decision and maybe try for a Statement, where funds will be provided to give him the support he needs.

My son also hates the cushion and struggles to stay still in any situation - he prefers to bounce around, poking, pushing and hitting others in his way!

I am more hopeful now that with the Statement, he will get the additional support. Good luck smile

handerson91 Mon 18-Nov-13 18:28:38

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

Lizzyjs Sun 20-Jul-14 01:17:57

You need to instruct a good SEN barrister if you can to get a Good SEN statement and excellent specialist AS school to meet your Sons academic and special needs

Bignorthernlass Sat 02-Aug-14 10:31:25

Just on the way to my sons Asd assessment. It does seem that getting a statement is so much 'easier
' �� if your child explodes rather than implodes? My son is refusing school. Any ideas on how to navigate the statementing system based on potential mental health triggers and anxiety? School have already offered the adjustments but he still won't go in! Thanks

OneInEight Sun 03-Aug-14 07:12:36

Bignorthernlass - try asking your question on SN children - several posters have school refusers on there and should be able to help (probably won't get seen here). Mine are the exploding variety so we have got through the statementing minefield more smoothly. How old is your son?

Bignorthernlass Mon 04-Aug-14 17:46:47

Hi that's useful thanks!! He's 12 and now has his AS diagnosed.

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