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What do I write on my section of Request For Educational Psychologist Involvement form ?

(14 Posts)
Toppy Thu 02-Dec-10 13:56:31

DS (3) has recently be diagnosed with autism.
At the Assessment we were advised not to initiate Statementing until EP has been sent written their diagnosis.
This is now being held up by lack of a typist so the team have contacted Early Years SEN office who has seen DS at nursery twice this year.
She has given nursery a one sheet 'Request for Education Psychologist Involvement with an Under-Five Child'

It has the following info on it

1) name, address etc
2) 'Issues causing concern' - nursery has put lack of the following: interaction, communication ability to follow simple instructions, eye contact and speech
3) 'Changes desired' - nursery has put: formation of clear words, independent come and sit down at circle time, mixing with peers
then
4) 'What are parents views about the involvement of the EP ? Their written comments are welcome'
There is an inch of space for me to write below this heading
I don't know what to write - my ultimate aim is to get him Statemented and into the local special school. This is just a little request form but I am aware every comment that goes on record counts
What sort of thing should I write and should I limit it to the inch of space or do an attachment and go for it

TIA

silverfrog Thu 02-Dec-10 14:00:20

If you initiate Statementing, the EP will automatically b assigned, and sent to assess your ds.

waiting now for an EP report will mean (imo) that the EP report will be out of date by the time any decisions are made by Statementing panel.

Cut to the chase - don't get dragged into a delaying loop as set out by your county Health/Education team.

whereabouts in the country are you? sounds an odd thing to recommned, if you ask me.

Toppy Thu 02-Dec-10 14:53:11

We are in H&F in London - the form has been filled out to get the EP on board now rather than wait for written diagnosis which I think is how Health alert Education to the fact that there is a child that needs to be on the radar in the borough.

Heres the thing - I think this route gets an EP in there more quickly than Statementing which I need to happen as we are thinking of moving DS to private special nursery whilst going through the Statementing process. But I want the EP to go into current mainstream nursery for initial assessment to see how that is not working for him and report that. If EP does a visit in new specialist nursery he might report that DS's needs are being met (which hopefully they will be but this nursery is expensive and miles and miles away and not a long term option for us)

silverfrog Thu 02-Dec-10 15:28:48

my worry with your suggested route is EPs are notoriously over-stretched.

So, if pre-school request a visit for an observation for a child who is a) not dx'd and b) not in SA process, then that request may be pushed down a list.

There is no "right" way to do this, and I understand your concerns.

HOwever, the EP could go to the specialist nursery, observe your ds there, and agree that is the best place for him. This happened with dd1 - we put her into a specialist pre-school, and funded ourselves (she did have a dx, but no statement)

Ep observed her there as part of SA process, and agreed it was the best place for her (it wasn't, but that is a whole other story! we needed her to be there at that point), and form the following term the LA paid the fees - this is still before Statement was issued.

can you afford a private EP? they will get in there more quickly, and crucially be more impartial (nhs EP will be aware, as they sit on placement panels, what spaces are available/budget restrictions, and could report according to those criteria rather than your ds' needs)

silverfrog Thu 02-Dec-10 15:31:16

sorry, meant to say: EP reporting that your ds' needs are being met in a specialist settng isno barrier to Statementing, or to LA paying fees.

If they are agreeing he should be there, and his neds are nmet by a specialist placement, it does not matter that you have started to fund yoursleves - the LA takes over, either from the following term (depending on LA policy on specialist pre-school placements) or form Statement date.

we funded dd1's specialist pre-school, and then the La took over, and we did the same for her ABA school when we moved her - funded it ourselves, and LA took over form Statement date.

Toppy Thu 02-Dec-10 17:53:36

Silverfrog you have answered my next post - would placing DS in private special nursery scupper our chances at a place in the local state special school which is our first choice but only available through Statementing?.

I cannot sit by and watch DS flounder at current nursery whilst everyone decides what to do so am putting in interim measures. They have to be interim though as it is an hour's drive each way and just mornings so not worth me coming back home again plus I have a 14 month old too so it is going to be incredible disruptive.
That is why I want to get a EP into current nursery now.
I guess if EP ends up doing assessment in specialist nursery we just fight (but on what basis - that it is so far away ?)
Am finding the fine details of all of these difficult to get to grips with and we have not even started Statementing yet !

silverfrog Thu 02-Dec-10 18:02:37

so, your ds is currently in mainstream, but failing.

you want to put him into private specialist nursery (can I ask whereabouts?) so as to not waste this time.

you are worried that the EP will then recommend the private specialist nursery, not the local state specialist nursery?

don't worry!

if it is thought that your ds need s a specialist placement, the LA will move heaven and earth to get him into a state-run one, as much cheaper for them

if you leave him in mainstream, I htink the problem will be that the EP will say that it is not really good enough, but will be ok with support while a place at specialist nursery comes up.

form experience, this will take years (I was naive enough to believe this, and dd1 languished in a ms pre-school for over a year, while she slid further and further down the list fo rthe specialist pre-school)

ime, unless the local specialist place is so oversubscribed that your ds will never rise to the top of the list in time, then the LA will prefer to place him there.

if that does happen, and the LA fund the place at the further away pre-school, you will be entitled to Transport. A whole new ball game. but basically, your ds is entitled to trnsport if you live more than about 3 miles away form the school designated most suitable for him (iirc). so, if the LA agree to fund the further away school , they are also saying they have no closer placement.

this is why you need a statemnt. if the pre-school is named on the statement, then they have no leg to stand on. if not, I suspect it is harder to prove it is the closest suitable place

Toppy Thu 02-Dec-10 18:30:51

Silverfrog - you were exactly the person I have been needing advice from. This dilemma of whether to go private( hopefully just in the short/medium term) is the number one thing on my mind at the moment.

Please can you sense check my thinking . My ideal situation should everything to to plan (which it won't) is as follows .....

- get EP into mainstream nursery asap where he can see that despite their best efforts at accomodating DS's autism he is not thriving there

- move him to private special school in Surrey - I am really hoping for him to go three mornings a week increasing to days once he settles in there

- go through Statementing

- then get him into local state special school which is a full day 5 days a week (which I feel he would be ready for just yet anyway)

this is the dream situation. I will return to this post down the line and laugh at how naive I was I suspect.

If you get Statemented and then a place is there any choice in the time at which you switch ?
Can you see any major flaws in this plan (apart form the obvious which is that none of it will work to time or may even hit a brick wall)
Someone pointed out to me this week that if the EP visits in private special school and see we can afford it and I am prepared to hang out in a Waitrose/Starbucks with my baby in Surrey for three half days a week killing time to pick my son up then we don't need a public provision.
Lawyer type husband reckons he could make a good fight if this arises but I am not so sure.

PS am slightly nervous about posting too many details here already - are there such things a spies out there ?

silverfrog Thu 02-Dec-10 18:51:56

Toppy, I have sent oyu a Private Message (Inbox at the top of the page)

Re: Statementing and moving schools.

The LA will issue a statement that names the place your ds needs to be in now

we got to the ridiculous point where our LA wanted to issue a statement for dd1, which, had we accepted it, woudl have been out of date, as we should have been talking about her next placement (she was already out of year in an ASD pre-school - possibly the one you are talking about!), and should have been in school.

They refused to name a school for the next school year, and the transition time can be lengthy, while they assess what school is best for the next stage.

ie if you want your ds at specialist pre-school now, any statement made will name that place (ideally). you then, around December next year (your ds is due to go to school in 2012, isn't he?) would start transitioning for the next Spetember placement. by around Easter of 2012 you could expect your transition statement to be complete.

a statement can only ever (as far as I understand it) state what the picture is now. other than transition times, it does not name future schools - this s always open to negotiation right up until the placement panel sits (and beyond that too!)

SausageMonster Thu 02-Dec-10 19:43:58

You do know that Statements are not enforceable in private schools?

many parents even have difficulty / cannot get the LA Ed Psych to assess their child if it's in a private school - we've had this on this board. (Although your argument would be that the Ed Pysch is a Council resource that should be accessible to your regardless where you chose to educate your child).

silverfrog Thu 02-Dec-10 19:53:52

No, statements aren't enforceable in private schools, but hopefully, that is a non-issue.

I mean, i fhte rivate school you want your dc to go to is a good enough fit, it doesn't matter what is written on the statement.

we have this with dd1 currently.

her statement is the biggest pile of wank ever written.

it neither lists her needs accurately, nor addresses the needs it does list.

there is no quantified SALT, and no OT mentioned at all.

But, crucially, it names the right school for her, so all the rest is irrelevant.

She has SALT, and OT, as organised by the school. They recognise her need for it, and so it is a service they provide. They have comprehensively investigated her needs, and address them.

So it doesn't matter that the crap that is written in her statement is unenforceable - the only bit that matters (for her and us, given that her school is perfect for her) is part 4: naming th school, which obviously means LA pays the fees.

The same would go for the specialist pre-school I am guessing the OP is referrng to - if it is the one I am thinking of they are excellent at making sure the statement is written in such a way that they are the only viable. they are then already offering the services that would be written inot the statement, so legally enforceable or not, those services would be provided.

StarlightMcKenzie Fri 03-Dec-10 00:27:14

Message withdrawn

happyfrog Fri 03-Dec-10 01:21:37

2) 'Issues causing concern' - nursery has put lack of the following: interaction, communication ability to follow simple instructions, eye contact and speech

Sounds as if your child may also need a speech and language assessment. This may also help with funding for your placement, you need all the needs diagnosed. There are independent speech and language therapists, one with experience of Tribunals may be useful.

Our experience of our LA was not good, DS discharged twice in early years, by our LA. not picked up again until years later,

Toppy Fri 03-Dec-10 14:54:39

Thanks everyone for taking the time to reply.
Star - am liking your line so much I am just going to use it verbatim. Such a relief that I don't have to come up for four pages of painful description at this stage.
Am feeling extra fragile today - just popped in to look at local special school which is just excellent but a bit of a shock.
thanks again

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