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SA, guy saying he hasn't got enough info to decide whether or not to carry out a SA.(9 Posts)
Had a message left on answerphone, guy is saying he hasn't enough info to decide whether DS2 needs a SA.
DS2 has been referred to SALT, Paed, Ed Psych, and Portage, the area SENCo is going into nursery to see him on the 8th Dec. we've got a Paed's appt. on the 10th, SALT's waiting list put's us into Feb before he's got a chance of seeing them, and Portage has been called off because he started nursery.
I have requested the SA myself, to try and get the ball rolling sooner, and if we've any chance of getting the statement in intime for DS2 starting school (Spet. 2011) from what I've read it need's to be starting now.
I thought the LEA had to provide support for any child who needs extra help, regardless of any DX? Surely the SA is to find out if the child needs extra help? Or am I missing something?
I will be returning his call tomorrow, but wanted to know what you guys think of this, is it just an excuse to put us off? Or am I already too cynical of the system?
It's an excuse.
The first thing the LA should have done when it received your request for SA would be to contact school and ask them about any difficulties.
If his current setting says there are difficulties they should have stated what they were doing to assist. Only when current settings resources are exhausted would LA normally consider Statement.
However your DS's needs sound complex and he's involved with multople outside agencies so should already be at Schools Action Plus. Can you ask any of the agencies he's already involved with to provide reports to the LA?
All LA can do is assess or refuse to assess. If they rfeuse you can apply again after 6 months by which time you should have seen those agencies for which you're waiting for appointment so will have more evidence to provide to support your request.
Always ask every professional you see to provide you with a written report - always useful for DLA etc as well as for LA.
Thanks SausageMonster. In his very long message he says he has spoken to the HV (who is DS2's keyworker) confirmed that she has referred to all the above and that he has started nursery, problem is because this has all only just come about in the last month or so, we haven't seen anyone yet to get reports from. His SENCo at nursery spent half an hour chatting to DS2 one morning and has declared that all he needs is help with his speech and he'll be fine, so I'm not getting any joy out of her.
So tomorrow, when I ring him back, do I stay insistant with going ahead with the SA now, or would it be better to wait till we've got some reports to back us up? If he decides not to do the SA, and then we have to wait 6 months before we can ask again, would we have had enough reports to back us up in that time?
Grrr, they don't make it easy do they?
Difficult call Natalie.
I was wrong about waiting 6 months. You only have to wait 6 months if the LA has already carried out an SA. If the LA refused to do so (which may be the outcome in your case) you can apply again immediately. Sorry about that.
SENCOs are not experts. All she can say is there are difficulties in which case the LA will ask nursery what they are doing to help your DS.
As you have no other expert input at present ask the LA to speak to the nursery SENCO and request details of DS's difficulties and confirmation that he's been referred to those other agnecies.
The SEN COP has some guidance on this:
basicaly if he has dificulties the nursery should have put him on Early Years Action or (eaclated that) to Early Years Plus. If that support is insufficient a Statement is the next step.
Has your nursery done this?
Also: 4:35 states that when a request for SA is made the LA should have clear documentation in realtion to a child's SEN and any action that has been taken...
In a very few cases where there are severe and complex needs the extent of the child's needs will be evident. In such cases request for SA might be made prior to any Early Years intervention and there should be no need for reports from all the aganecies involved with the child before the LA reaches a deciison. The LA shoudl act on reports from the professional most closely involved with the child.
SO I woud argue with the LA that 4:36 applies - the fact that he's been referred to all these agencies with which you're waiting for appontments means his needs are complex )even if nursey hasnm't yet put him on Early Year Intervention).
Early Years is not my specialist subject - perhaps someone else can help?
I'm going through this with my son. (At pre-school). I've just found out that they are doing a statment. Regarding SA, when they did my son's they wrote to the OT, SALT, EP,Paed and school and they all were asked to write a report. That does mean that your child will need to see them, however this can be done as part of the SA.
My request for a SA was initally refused (I do think this is common). As they stated that they needed a form filling in by nursery and nursery hadn't sent it back, so they refused on the basis of lack of evidence.
I did get the form filled in by nusery and asked them to reconsider the request, which they did and subsequently carried out the SA.
I think the problem you may have is with the evidence the nursery will provide.
I managed to get hold of his HV (I wanted to speak to her before the LEA), she said the guy from the LEA has said all he's got info wise is the form we sent in and the CAF, and that he has never undertaken a SA with so little info, he isn't saying no full stop, but to just wait till DS2 has seen at least some of the professionals, and they've done their initial reports etc.
So I rang the LEA, he's basically told me the story, and has advised to hold off until mid-Feb, by then DS2 should have had a good few of the appts. he's been referred for, and he'll have more back up. I asked him outright if we left it till mid-Feb, would that then give us time to get a statement together (if needed), before DS2 is due to start school in Spetemeber, he's said absolutely (Am deffo logging this call in my log!)
So, after 30 seconds to consider everything, I think I have a plan? We've got the area SENCo going into nursery to see DS2 on the 8th Dec, and the first Paed appt. on the 10th (have just been told it's a full physical examination, DS2 is going to hit the roof ), so if we wait till their reports are in, then re-apply, if they still refuse the SA then we can appeal and quote the SENcop till the LEA know it off by heart?! Will this work?
Sorry forgot to say, there has been lots of talk about Early Years Action, and Plus, but AFAIK he is not on any of them yet, I guess the area SENCo will be arranging it?
SENCO should already have arranged it - keep at them or it won't happen.
if he has been referre to outside agencies via bursery, he should be on school action plus. it doesn't mean a lot - just a list, but he should also have an iep running which details targets that nursery should be working on, in his main areas of dealy/ difficulty. these can be social etc as well as more 'academic' (whatever that means at nuresry age lol)
at his age the iep should be reviewed termly, with targets being adjusted accordingly. once he is 5 this will go to six monthly.
tbh, i think you stand little chance of getting a statement without nursery support. so your goal over the next three months is to get nursery totally on side.
make an appointment with the senco and ask to review his iep. if he hasn't got one, ask them to draw one up in line with the problem areas (ie the reasons for referral to different agencies)
the ieps are used as evidence in the statementing process. if he is consistently failing to meet iep targets (these targets also specify the help he will be getting to reach his targets) despite being supported at sa+, then that is more evidence that more support is needed (ie statement).
don't worry about timescales btw. you've got plenty of time. you only need 6 mos, but the obviously the more evidence you have when you apply, the more chance of success.
area senco might visit once in a while, but the usual senco will do all the school action+ and iep stuff.
once you get the reports from slt/ ot/ physio etc, make sure some of the recommendations are included as targets on the iep. dd2's therapists always visited her in nursery to liaise with keyworker etc, and have input into iep targets.
dd2 was only statemented for entry to yr r. it didn't change anything about the support she was given btw. there's no reason he can't be adequately supported now without a statement.
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