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school phobia v new school

(8 Posts)
devientenigma Tue 21-Jun-11 20:08:46

my ds is 10 yo and primarily down syndrome with sld. He was signed off school eventually after years of refusal and reluctance with strategies to get him in wearing thin and the fact he was getting bigger and stronger and less physically managable. I feel the school he is in fail to acknowledge some of his issues and so don't meet his needs. However after a search online I may have found a school suitable to his needs, although independant. However a few profs etc feel I have enough argument to fight for a trial at least. I am going to view the school and meet the deputy head tomorrow. Is there any worthwhile things I should be saying or doing?

TotalChaos Tue 21-Jun-11 20:18:16

maybe look to see if you have anything written - statement/report from psych/paed that would back up that new school would meet his needs and old school wouldn't?

fabmum1966 Tue 21-Jun-11 20:36:15

Ask what strategies school would put into place for your son let them know how you feel is the best way to deal with him. make sure they know how difficult he can be because you dont want him to start and then be told they cant meet his needs. Ask what level of support they would be able to offer him. If you like the school and they can meet his needs its worth fighting to get him in. My son got a place in an independent school because the lea didnt have one to meet his needs. He has made loads of progress now he as the right help.

AlysWho Wed 22-Jun-11 01:32:25

I just fought a battle with my LA to move my dd from local unit placement to special school, she was refusing school and generally becoming completely unmanageable. My biggest urdle was to convince the LA it was an Educational issue as when she got to school she was fine (ish). So they kept saying it was an issue for social services not them, as they were meeting her educational needs with a fully supported specialist unit, and she appeared to be 'fine' there. Grr. I knew she wasnt fine and was just coping at school and kicking off vereywhere else, and refusing to go to school, and having MASSIVE transition issues. ANYway cut a long story short, have managed to get her moved to the SS and guess what- she's a new pesron! Happy, much more flexible, confident etc, she's much more engaged and has so much more confidence. I cant tell you how happy I am...

So the sentence that seemed to get the LEA to take notice was 'her educational needs are not being met if I cant get her to school'
Also, I started off the whole process by saying 'I cant cope and need a residential placement for her to access a 24 hour waking curriculum to meet her needs', and so then when I said could we consider local SS they were MUch more reciprotive to the idea. Saving them about half million quid!! The SS of course is full and has a long waiting list, BUT we managed to jump this and she's in! And so happy! and I'm going back to college in Sep fingers crossed..

Good luck, I really hope you get the school placement your ds needs, you both have a right to it.

AlysWho Wed 22-Jun-11 01:49:55

'receptive to the idea' and other spelling mistakes, soz...

AlysWho Thu 23-Jun-11 10:43:50

How did you get on at the SS? [crossed fingers]

devientenigma Thu 23-Jun-11 19:03:13

The visit to the school went well. The ethos and policies of the school and what the senco said and asked were spot on. The difficulty now is proving to the LA that there SS does not meet my ds needs. We do have some evidence of this it's just in this current financial climate how far they are willing to take this to stop a child going to a more suitable expensive out of borough placement. I am awaiting a meeting with head of ed and sars to start the ball rolling regards renewing his statement. Meeting with his current school and home tutoring service didn't go to well today. School still insist he is happy and sociable when there!! My reply....if he was he would happily be there.

Sounds hard but at the mo I have no fight left in me. I have battled with a challenging unmanageable child and unwilling services for the last 10yo. To be grim the only option I see for now is that terrible get out clause that some desperate parents have taken with their kids or leaving hubby to get on with it all. Though deep down I know I will fight, it's just taken a long time to recover this time. The social worker is supportive and we have a meeting with the psyc soon where we are going to be asking specific questions. So far she has told me to see what comes of the new statement and psyc meeting.

AlysWho Thu 23-Jun-11 20:26:24

Exactly- if your ds really was happy at school he'd be going in. Poor you, I've been 'lucky' up to now and havent had too much of a battle getting appropriate school placements. This last one took me 2 years all in, but I only REALLy pushed for the last 4 months of it cos I was cracking up. Then they listened. Social services have also given me DP to have a carer come to the house when she's not at school, it was that or looking for a p/t foster family.

It did seem to help my case to threaten them with something worse. The fees for independent school placements are split 3 ways between Health, Social care and Ed, so maybe you could put some more pressure on social services/ health?

Dont give up, but do get all the help you can and tell 'service providers' how desperate your feeling. Cut yourself some slack, dont be down on youself, you're doing an amazing job to still be fighting for him after 10 years. As I say fighting for 2 years took all the strength I had, i ended up on AD's and feeling really really desperate. Also have you got a key worker/ parent partnership person/ or 'Team around the child' service? Or anyone to help you fight your and your son's corner? Also of course IPSEA and SOSSEN.

PS re your comment about your social worker recommending you'wait' - I wouldn't wait for anything! Keep nagging people telling them what you want now (emails are great for this, I work my way up the management tree to the directors of services), dont wait to see what shoddy half hearted attempts strangers might make to try and meet your needs. Thats my little rant over! xTake care of yourself x

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