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Residential School - how does this affect DLA and child benefit?

(26 Posts)
JarOfHearts Sat 24-Sep-11 20:50:47

Can anyone with a child who is in residential school answer this for me please? DS has an ongoing award of higher rate mobility and care (DLA). As per my previous thread I am (somewhat reluctantly and due to his needs) planning for him to attend residential school on a Mon - Fri basis and home at weekends and holidays.

I am assuming I would inform DLA.. will the awards change? Or do I pay the money into an account for it to be accessed by school staff? (can't imagine how that would work..)

I have a motorbility car.. I will need to keep that as I will still be transporting DS around.. It's not wheelchair adapted (yet as is wheelchair is still small enough to fit in the boot of a 7-seater) but I have it because it is specific to his needs. If they mess with my mobility component because he's not home all the time time, I will lose the car entitlement.. (eek..)

And child benefit? What happens to that when a child does not live at home Mon -Fri?

JarOfHearts Sat 24-Sep-11 21:03:16

Ah.. just found this..

When your child is in a residential
school or care
If your child is currently in a residential
school or residential care (including for
short term breaks) and this is paid for
from ‘public funds‘ then the DLA care
component stops being paid after 28
days. The mobility component is currently
not affected although the government
has proposed changing these rules
from 2013 so that DLA mobility stops
after 84 days.

Also this..

When your child comes home for at least
28 days the ‘link‘ is broken, and DLA can
be paid again for another 12 weeks during
any future hospital admissions.
It is also important to understand that
different types of residential stays can
be added together in a similar way.
This might apply if your child goes to
residential school and sometimes goes
to a respite care unit for overnight stays
during school holidays. Those stays can
be added to the days spent at school,
unless the child comes home for 28 days.
When a child spends time in both
hospital and residential accommodation,
these stays can also be linked. Contact
the helpline for more details.
Getting paid for days at home
If your child‘s DLA stops because they are
in hospital or a residential setting, they are
still entitled to DLA payments at a daily
rate for the days they spend at home.
For example, your child has been away
at residential school for more than 28
‘linked‘ days, so payments of DLA care
component have stopped. When they
come home from school on Friday
and go back on Monday, DLA care
component should be paid at a daily rate
for Friday, Saturday, Sunday and Monday
(four days).
If they stay at home for more than 28
days, the care component should not be
stopped again until after they‘ve spent
another 28 days in residential school.
When a child is in hospital or a residential
setting this can impact on any Carer‘s
Allowance paid to their main carer.
However, even if your child is in hospital
or a residential setting for long periods,
you may still be able to carry on getting
Carer‘s Allowance if your child regularly
spends at least two days at home.
You must provide at least 35 hours
care during the ‘benefit week‘ they
come home.
A benefit week runs from Saturday
midnight to the following Saturday
midnight. Time spent preparing your
home for your child‘s visit or cleaning
up afterwards can count towards the 35
hours care.

This sounds like a minefield!

Is anyone grappling with this.. successfully??

BakeliteBelle Sat 24-Sep-11 22:39:02

That last sentence is not one I've noticed before. Interesting.
As to the rest of it, I can't make sense of it at all! Perhaps I should look again when I have had some sleep!

JarOfHearts Sat 24-Sep-11 22:43:07

Quite Bakelite. confused

Tonicwater Sun 25-Sep-11 07:22:29

JarofHearts, My DD has been resiidential for a while. In terms of DLA you need to inform them that your DS will be residential. They take all the details as to where he will be. They then suspend Dla while they check what you have told them. You then get mobility as normal, but care componant is different. You stay at the same rate, but you are sent what they call boarder forms.

You fill in the days he has been at home. So if he is residential mon-fri you fill in fri date if that is when he came home and if he goes back on a sun you fill in that date. They work it on a daily rate so if you are on high rate care it will be what high rate care is a day. So fri-sun is three days payment. When they send a letter as to how much you are going to get you get the next boarder form. I was terribly confused at first, but it is really a lot easier than it seems.

Davros Sun 25-Sep-11 10:15:49

That is what I have done with DLA and CA, fill in forms giving dates that DS is home and they work it out. You have to remember to do it though! They are very helpful and if you make a mistake and they don't tally they will phone you and sort it out. The mobility component continues regardless so, if you have a movability car that is not affected or you continue to receive that part of the payment. Although it seems odd to have a lovely car sitting outside with tax paid etc while DS is not here, we do have to drive a lot further to see him (which we are doing today), collect and drop him and when he's home its in full use. I hadn't seen that last part about CA either!
I'm not sure about Child Benefit.
I just wrote them all a letter before he went into residential and told them the date he was starting and I think we continued to get Child Benefit.

JarOfHearts Sun 25-Sep-11 14:28:10

Thank you both xx The site I c&p'd that info on had a scary section about the rules for motorbility, under our circumstances, changing in 2013!! I skipped past it last night but.. God.. that is not good at all!! I need the car I have... DS can't travel in any other one safely.. so God knows what'll happen in 2013 assuming our residential arrangement goes ahead... sad <sticks head in sand for now>

And whilst I have you here.. please can counsel me a little about the whole move to residential school? I do feel its the right thing.. have felt in secretly for a long time but would not have anyone tell me so and each time they did it pushed me farther away from being willing to consider it (DP in particular.. he has a right to express his opinions.. he cares for DS alongside me and takes the violence.. cleans up the messes etc and he's not even his father.. but maybe that was the reason I could not listen to his opinion on this.. he does not have a paternal bond with him. XH does but.. well.. I treat with the utmost respect as the father of my children but I don't like the man.. simple as that) but it is not those things that have been the final straws.. These have been, in equal amounts , the fact that much of the violence is aimed at DD (age 12) who doesn't remember a life without R (DS) aa frankly, deserves better than this day in and day out.. and also that it is obvious that R responds very well to structure and needs a 24 hour curriculum that a family home can't offer.

Can I ask what made you guys make the move to residential? How you felt.. what a difference it has made.. how you feel now..

There is noone else I know who I can discuss these things with.. I need parents in exactly the same boat.

i watched a film about on a website for a res school (not one that's going to be suitable for DS but still) and it has a short section with parents talking about their feelings... and I sat and cried (I am not a cryer) because I empathised so much and so wanted to hear more of what they had to say!!

Davros Sun 25-Sep-11 21:21:36

Will respond tomorrow. Long day visiting DS and catching up of Doctor Who and watching X Factor! I won't forget.

Debs75 Sun 25-Sep-11 21:37:38

I'm not sure residential school is something we would consider for ds but things may change in the future, especially if he gets violent again

just wondering if you keep the mobility part so can keep the car it would be sat doing nothing for 4-5 days a week?
I noticed in the new motability mag that you should only use the car for the direct use of the claimant. It seems a waste of a car to only use it when the claimant is in it or directly benefiting. does that mean you should have another car for use by other family members?
Sorry for the hijack

JarOfHearts Sun 25-Sep-11 21:50:03

Dens.. yes that's what the current rules allow but that is set to change in 2013...

And to be fair I don't think anyone DOES only use their Motorbility car for the claimant.. well maybe the odd few.. but seriously.. now many of us can afford to run two cars so as to fulfil the rules to the letter like that? I certainly can't...

JarOfHearts Sun 25-Sep-11 21:50:21

*Debs.. sorry.. rushing!

Tonicwater Mon 26-Sep-11 07:48:37

Debs. We don't have a motibility car. We bought a car that was suitable for my DDs electric wheelchair, so we could use it when she wasn't in it. But I had heard as JarOfHearts has said the mobility part will stop.

JarOfHearts. I am not sure how much help I will be as my DD didn't start residential until she was 16. Although I am sure the feelings I had will be the same. My DD has just started her 3rd year at a residential college.

We decided it was best for her as there really wasn't anything else that was suitable after she had finished school.We had been asked before she started secondary school if we had considered boarding. I was quite vocal in telling them I hadn't and never would!! But now they say you should have no regrets as to what you do, and I don't. Hindsight is a wonderful thing as I would have sent her before. It has been fantastic for her. Her days are structured and her social life is more than we could have ever provided for her.

When she first went I was in a daze for ages. It was having to pass all the care over to someone else. I worried dreadfully that they wouldn't do it right. My DD has epilepsy and still has two seizures a month. I worried they wouldn't know what to do. Would her learning difficulties mean she wasn't understood, Would they charge her wheelchair at night so she could get round the next day. Would they make sure her work was enlarged so she could see it. All things that she needed to get through a day.

My biggest worry was that she was miles away, that should she be ill it would take hours to get there. Where she is they have 24 hour nursing care so really I didn't need to worry quite like I did. It has made a major difference to all our lives. My DS is older but I had time to spend with him. Now weekends and holidays she is home are so different. We plan things to do we do go and see her if she has decided to stay at college on a weekend.

My DH said it would be the making of her going to college. I don't often tell him he is right but on this occasion I had to agree. grin

Debs75 Mon 26-Sep-11 09:08:45

OP Yes many can't afford to run 2 cars. I got our car on the basis I needed the extra seats due to having 4 kids and ds neds to be seperate so they know I have other people in my family to accommodate. TBH I barely use the car with ds in it, about twice a week but I use it to buy his food and I take the other dc's out to give him quiet time at home. Sounds a bit cheeky but it does benefit him. Plus he is at school from 8-4 so we often use it just for us.

I have been thinking of ds maybe doing a residential after he has finished at school. he is there till he is 19 but we don't know yet what is on offer after that. Our worse case scenario is he will be at home with dp all day with no outside structure. The 2 younger dd's will only be 8 and 10 so there will be a lot of school runs and activities which he will probably hate.
I feel him going away then could be really good for him and it is a natural time to move away.
I think as well like Tonicwater it will be a huge step more for us then him and handing him over to strangers will be hard for us to come to terms with

Davros Mon 26-Sep-11 10:55:10

I held off getting a motability car as I thought the rules were too onerous and I would just break them. However, since going through the process of getting one it seems clear that it is accepted that the car is likely to be used as the main family car, whatever the journey and whoever the passengers. I do justify it to myself now that DS is not here most of the time because we have to travel further to see/collect/drop him and use it with him 100% when he is home. I will worry about the changes to the rules when they come, I think we have been extremely lucky to get what we have in the meantime.

How well I remember thinking that DS would never go to residential, just the thought of it made me cry as no-one could look after him, and more importantly love him, like us. Looking back I can see that it was a process for us. Our first step was trying medication, having tolerated and managed his tantrums and violence and got to the point where it clearly wasn't working. Risperidone worked like magic, he continues to take it, and I am sure it kept him at home longer than he otherwise would have been.

The next step was respite. We got to a point where we no longer wanted people coming to our home, that was fine when he was younger, but we wanted him to be able to stay away from home somewhere safe where he was happy and that had good facilities. DD was also a toddler then and we couldn't do anything with her and she was beginning to feel it. People always say that the siblings "know no different" but she certainly knew that her friends did not live like we did, no freedom, no holidays, no spontaneity, few visitors, Christmas alone. We got one weekend (2 nights) respite a month per year for a couple of years. It was bloody fantastic! And, again, I'm sure kept him with us for longer than he otherwise would have been. We'd always had problems with him at home, destroying the garden, sleep issues, unable to fill his "leisure" time in any way and with very limited facilities and space in our urban home with tiny garden. But things had always been good at school so it worked. Then he went through a very bad phase, I think it was a regression, where he couldn't even go to the things he enjoyed, everything was a challenge to him, even the simplest things. He started touching everything which turned into tapping, then hitting. Our best carer couldn't take him out any more and nor could I, and I'd always been able to get him to do what I wanted, even when he was upset and didn't want to. And school called us in because they felt they couldn't meet his needs. I can't fault the school as they bent over backwards to help him but it just wasn't working, he needed more.

Our Paediatrician had talked to us over the years, very gently, about residential at some point, so we had his support and he was a big noise in the borough and was listened to. DD is 7.5 years younger than DS so that was another issue. She couldn't have friends round after school as he'd be running around naked and wiping poo as he went, we couldn't go to the park with other kids after school or do anything spontaneously as we had to be home for DS's school bus. Plus my health was suffering and we worried about the age gap between a teenage boy and a younger sister and all that might entail. So we started to think about DS's needs and the reality was that he needed more space, better facilities, more structure, able carers etc. It has turned out to be the best thing we did for him primarily, but also for all of us. Mind you, we were very certain that it was the right thing to do and he goes to a fantastic school that is not too far away so we had NO GUILT. We do miss him but we do not feel guilty. He started when he was 12.5 years old on a termly basis for 44 week per year. I strongly recommend going for termly as you can have them home any weekend you like that way but also have weekends for the rest of the family. We now have holidays and, instead of worrying about him not coming away on holiday with us, we see his visits home as his holiday when he gets spoilt and pampered. My other big recommendation is to seek LAC (Looked After Child) status for your child. I know a lot of people react against that term but, in my experience, it has been only good. We have retained Parental Responsibility but, being LAC, there are a lot more controls and responsibilities on the Local Authority. We have a lot more opportunities to discuss how things are going with regular LAC reviews, his Social Worker (and we have a named one) has to visit him on a regular basis and, I believe, DS has more rights one he becomes an adult, having been LAC.

We went to visit him yesterday because I have been very unwell over the summer so literally could not have him home and we are now working up to getting back to "normal". The school were fantastic in keeping him there, looking after him and having a proper, planned schedule of holiday activities and outings. When we visited yesterday, as always, it reminded us how good it is for him with lots of space, great facilities and excellent staff. The staff are amazing, not only because of the job they do, but because they do really care about the kids and a lot of them tell me regularly how much they enjoy being with DS and how well they think of him and KNOW him as an individual. We cannot offer DS anything like the environment he needs as a big, growing teenage boy.

I suppose my last word is that DS went to residential school at a point when DD still loved him and we decided that we didn't want to wait until she didn't iyswim.

Debs75 Mon 26-Sep-11 11:17:55

Davros that is a really nice positive story.

Our ds recently started respite. we were offered it when he was 5 but felt it too young but after having dd2 3 years ago and then dd3 last year we realised respite would be an essential. He loves it and it is nice to have some ds free time to concentrate on the other 3. He started melatoning at the same time and to have him sleeping through the night was a huge breakthrough.

we struggle with the family outings although it is still possible. I think as well we will need to be aware of the turning point between him and the dd's

Tonicwater Mon 26-Sep-11 11:46:31

Davros. Like you I found for my DD the most wonderful placement. How right that is about the other DCs. My DS had to run out of school so we could get home for the bus to drop DD off. No going to the park until we had got her and then by the time we got to the park, most his friends would have gone.

My DS is now 22 I have often asked him if he thinks he missed out on things as a child. He says no but I do believe he did.

Debs. If you are looking for places at 19. There is a good website called natspec that has lists of specialist residential colleges. If you click on a college that may be suitable it will tell you what ages they are for.

Davros Mon 26-Sep-11 12:04:28

I hope our experience can help someone. I have said before on MN, and do drone on in RL, that people tend to think of our situation as a failure but I see it as a success..... for all of us.
It has been hard not seeing DS as much as usual over the last few months but I secretly think it has done him some good to be really immersed in school life and holiday at the residential part of school. I know I would say that but I think its true. At 16 he now has his own room with an en suite shower room which I hope will reduce his OCD toilet flushing and playing with water rather than the opposite and help us at home as he spends a lot of time here in the bath, flushing the toilet or running taps! We will try a first visit home after quite some time at half term and see if he has changed due to not coming home so much.
DD wailed that she wanted him to come home to live yesterday but we pointed out that he is much better off where he is with all the space and facilities and that she would soon get fed up if he was at home full-time. We do have to manage her relationship with him so she knows he is not abandoned and we all love him and this is why he is there and comes home for a jolly good pamper every now and then.

JarOfHearts Mon 26-Sep-11 20:16:04

Davros. You could be telling my story.. but without the "happy ending"... yet. Right down to the naked poo smearing!! My DD is exactly the same; adores DS but, after a recent violent episode (and she's been on the receiving end of many) finally cried "Mummy I can't deal with this any more.. he needs to live somewhere else..." (She's previously reacted very negatively when we discussed residential school hypothetically). She hasn't changed her mind since that day a few weeks ago and it's this that have made start the ball rolling. We've not had DD make the decison for us.. but it we've allowed her to be the one that's made us see we need to do this.. (DD is 12... DS is 11)

"We" is xH and I.. I live with DP who helps a lot but has to really try to have positive feelings towards DS because he's seen DD and I get hurt so often.. and the fact that I know he's felt residential school should have been addressed a long time ago has made me all the more determined NOT to consider it.. until now. I would not.. and would not want to be seen to be.. do(ing) this to save my relationship..

We've visiting schools starting this week. . I would love to say which ones but i need to be anonymous-ish.. my brain's too screwed up about everything to "come out" altho I think you "know" me of old Davros. There was a now absent friend among us too smile

DS have been better at school since the beginning of term (he does this.. has "honeymoon" periods after each summer hols) but today he attacked a 4 year old on the school bus and then an older child who hit him back. He punched rhe escort in the face twice and bit her. Sigh sad I've emailed the school and asked if they could put the 4 year old on a different bus as he homes in on smaller kids and I fear for her safety...

Thank you so much for sharing your experiences.. you have given me what I need.. someone to talk to.. I'll keep coming back..

Davros Tue 27-Sep-11 08:19:18

Hmmm, I can't work out who you are. My DS is at Priors Court in Berkshire if it helps, I can't speak highly enough of it.
One of our biggest concerns is DD, not only her safety but also her relationship with DS. There is also the issue of potential sexual interest although we've seen no evidence of this, you can't really ignore it when they're in bedrooms next to each other, a floor away from us.......
DS also had honeymoons and was actually in a very good phase when the time drew near for him to go to residential. I had qualms and thought about delaying it but knew really that we had to go ahead for all the reasons we had got to that point. In fact, it was quite nice to take him there and say goodbye when he WAS being good iyswim.
When DS started at residential he was spitting all the time and it stopped because they could be totally consistent. He also lived on jars of Skippy peanut butter and I chucked them out the day he went and have never bought it again. He eats much better at school and his health is better in general.

caringcarer Sat 20-Oct-12 00:14:20

It must be very very hard to let them go when you feel only you can look after all of their needs. It is brave to let them become more independent. It is also fair to other younger children who deserve a childhood too.

zebrafinch Sat 20-Oct-12 07:24:30

I fill in the daily sheets for DLA care as my son spends a lot of time in respite because of his high care needs. They do give you DLA care pro rata for the nights he is at home. This summer they stopped his DLA care because he was in hospital. Whilst necessary, it is all so bloody complicated admin burden. I sat next to a young guy on the bus last year and noticed he had an electronic tag on his ankle. Sometimes I think why not just issue my son with a tag to prove where he spent the night.

Re Residential school, thank God we still have them and there are good ones out there. Even if the school is the 5 star offsted I would still be heavily involved checking on care plans, calling in unexpectedly etc etc but that is just me, always vigilant

2old2beamum Sat 20-Oct-12 17:53:46

Don't whether this is relevent but our DS (adopted) was in a residential home for nearly 5 years. His care component was withdrawn whilst there but he still received the mobility high rate component. The home used this for clothes outings etc and we received the balance when he came to live with us (a fair amount of money)

kirstyn1986 Fri 22-Apr-16 22:32:23

can any1 help me need help as i dont know who to go to . so here i am my son has adhd and conduct disorder and is getting out of control wont take his meds either. i really am considering sending him to residential school. who can help me???? hes at a school that caters for his needs already but im at a loss i have 2 other children to look after too and im worried he attacks me and i dont know what to do. HELP?. thanks x

lottielou7 Sat 23-Apr-16 00:12:16

Kirstyn - I would suggest starting your own thread - you will get more responses.

DigestiveBiscuit Sat 23-Apr-16 08:36:30

You either have to argue only a residential school can meet his SEN, or you need to get Social Services involved, if they aren't already.

Has he had an assessment of need; and have you had a carer's assessment? If not, I suggest you put in requests to Social Services. It will be easier for you to get a residential school with a waking curriculum, if the cost of him at school plus social care is higher (approaching the cost of a residential school) or its accepted by SS you can't cope with him, and your other children are in need (because they are carers to him, when you go out the room; or they are at risk from his behaviour)

The final question is how old is he? It's more difficult, but not impossible to get residential for a younger child.

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