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Does anyone know what happens if you name a school on the statement but its full???

(12 Posts)
loueytbg Mon 01-Nov-10 16:09:47

Currently trying to sort out which school to name on the statement for DS1 (ASD). The EP report suggests he needs specialist provision with regular access to mainstream peers. All professionals I have spoken to have said that is basically describes the provision which is provided by a local primary school which has an ASD unit attached. We are going to see the unit/school this Friday but I have spoken to them and they have said they will be full for next September. There are only 12 places and it covers the whole of primary so we are waiting for someone to leave in order to get a place.

We are still intending to name the school on the statement, and I know that the LEA have to allow DS1 to go there unless they can show its not appropriate. But what happens if its full??? We've been to a specialist school today and he is far too able to go there. Otherwise, he would be in mainstream but he would not have enough OT/SALT support.

Just wondering if anyone else has been in this position??

peasantgoneroundthebend4 Mon 01-Nov-10 16:21:52

Sometimesthey can fund extra member of staff to go one over especially ic nothing else can meethis needs

StarkAndWitchesWillFindYou Mon 01-Nov-10 16:24:00

They can go above numbers if they are full and it is named on the statement. In any case, they usually 'say' they are full to ration applications. Only the determined get in.

The can only refuse if they have already filled their places (the application process hasn't even started yet for next Sept I don't think) and they can PROVE that educating your ds as well will be to the detriment of the other children.

keepyourmouthshutox Mon 01-Nov-10 16:30:00

In some local authorities, they always say it is full and then you find if you push, there is a space. Try for it. I considered applying for a place in a unit before ds started school but was told it will be full so did not - later I found out that they could have accommodated one more.

Have you looked at the LA website to see the actual number the unit can take? Also, ask the unit what is the maximum they have ever had. On the LA website here it says a certain number but I was told they have actually had more in the past.

Otherwise, you might have to go all the way to the tribunal to get a place and who knows what might happen then.

loueytbg Mon 01-Nov-10 19:43:34

Its the unit saying that its full, not the LA. But these tips are all very helpful - especially asking the unit whether they have ever had more than the 12 children they say they have space for (thanks keep).

Star - yes application process hasn't started yet but getting into the unit isn't through this anyway as you need a statement naming the unit to get a place. Its not as though they have 12 places in the unit at reception, it covers up to age 11 (not a lot of places really). So it may be that they don't have anyone leaving this year, hence they already know that they won't have any space next September. Of course someone could move away but its unlikely when they have already got good provision.

The good thing is the EP report basically describes the placement he needs and the unit is the only place that can provide it. I think they will find it hard to wriggle out of that.

sugarcandymonster Mon 01-Nov-10 20:05:56

The LA must name your choice of school on the statement unless:

(a) the school is unsuitable for your child’s age, ability and aptitude and the special
educational needs set out in part 2 of the statement
(b) your child’s attendance would not be a good use of resources (eg money, staff,
facilities, transport) or
(c) your child’s attendance would seriously affect the education of other children
at the school.

The school could argue that (c) applies if the school is full. It would then be up to you to show that it isn't true - the advice given earlier by keepyourmouthshut is useful. If the LA still refuse to name it on the statement, you should appeal. Often, merely the threat of appealing will show the LA that you're serious and they'll suddenly find another place. You could also research alternative placements (in another county/independent). This would be more expensive than the unit so the LA is likely to give in and somehow find a place for you in the unit than pay for an out of county placement.

IndigoBell Mon 01-Nov-10 20:58:17

I guess you might as well name it anyway...

(Really hope you get in.)

negligentmummy Mon 01-Nov-10 22:02:11

is there another school that you could have as a back-up? We are looking at all the schools with speech units at the moment. I have 1 that i def prefer, but there is another (actually more local) one if i don't get DD in. LEA have said that they'll try to get us the first but won't meet transport costs as there is another one closer...

negligentmummy Mon 01-Nov-10 22:03:05

so if there is another one, but it is further away, LEA might have to give you the transport to get there if that is what is putting you off...

loueytbg Mon 01-Nov-10 22:09:45

Not within the borough. This is the closest school with a unit to us and it will still be a 30-40 min trip in rush hour. I need to have a look and see if I can find an equivalent school in another borough just in case.

Indigo - thanks - will send you an email tomorrow hopefully. Trying to draft our comments on statement at the mo.

loueytbg Sun 07-Nov-10 20:40:06

Update - school is fab. Unit is just the right thing for him and they have an amazing sensory room within the unit which they can use when they need to. And the best thing is that despite what they told me on the phone, they will actually have 3 spaces next September. No guarantees that DS1 will get a place as there are other children trying to get a place too and they want to make sure each child is a good fit with the existing kids. It will go to a panel next term if the LA agree with our choice.

IndigoBell Mon 08-Nov-10 13:31:22

Yaaah! Fantastic news. grin

Fingers crossed for you.

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