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Wondering if I am being to fussy re proposed statement(11 Posts)
I got DS proposed statement through the post a couple of weeks ago and though it does seem to be giving DS a high lvl of support (matrix 5b) it seemed to be extremely vague with terms such as 'regular access to social skills training' 'access to adult support' and 'access to regular support' So I wrote a letter back asking for certain passages to be amended to state how often the support should be etc, using quotes from the supplied reports to back it up.
Less than a week later and I have recieved a letter back saying that they cannot quantify the level of support as the information has not been given by the agencies that provided the advice despite the quotes that I pulled from their own reports and that I discuss the matter directly witht the school as to how the support is to be implemented, I thought that the LEA was to do this, not leave it to the school.
But I am wondering if maybe I am making a mountain out of a mole hill because the school seem to be willing to provide most of the support my DS needs, the only bit I am unsure about is the support during lunch times, thing is, the SENCO at the mo is only temporary and the school is going through a lot of changes atm so this could all change in the future. I have arranged another meeting witht the SENCO to discuss this.
This is a bit long but I want to make sure the info is there because what I really want to know is is it worth pushing to get the support quantified, and if it is, what is my next step?
No, you're absolutely right, support should be properly specified in the statement. It's particularly important if there are going to be staff changes at school - you need everyone who deals with your son in school to know precisely what they are doing.
However, it probably isn't worth wasting your energy arguing the toss with the LA, because it doesn't sound as if they're going to give in. It might be best just to ask them to finalise the statement so that you can get on with a tribunal appeal. Go to someone like SOS-SEN or IPSEA for help with that.
You must have provision specified and quantified otherwise the statement is not worth the paper it is written on and can not be enforced. You are right to push this with the LA. If they are not prepared to do this then ask them to finalize the statement so that you can send off a tribunal appeal asap.
Take a look at this document - some good advice here www.ace-ed.org.uk/Resources/ACE/advice%20booklets/GettingTheStatementRight%20Mar2011.pdf
"I got DS proposed statement through the post a couple of weeks ago and though it does seem to be giving DS a high lvl of support (matrix 5b)"
That actually does not mean much in the great scheme of things, that is LEA mindspeak.
"it seemed to be extremely vague with terms such as 'regular access to social skills training' 'access to adult support' and 'access to regular support' "
You are not being overtly fussy, such wording in statement documents is completely unacceptable and should be challenged. Vague and woolly terms mean nothing in the long run and will not help your child. A poorly worded statement is indeed not worth the paper it is written on.
If no lunchtime support is actually specified in the statement then this may not be received either.
LEAs know the law and they fully know that support in the statement has to be both specified and quantified e.g child x will receive 5 hours of speech therapy from a SALT per week etc. None of this regular access nonsense because it is not specified.
I would also look at Part 2 because if Part 3 is not right then Part 2 is likely not either/
I would ask them to finalise the statement then appeal this to SENDIST re Part 3 refusal to properly specify or quantify support.
IPSEA www.ipsea.org.uk; they have lots of information on their website.
Thanks Beautifulgirls for the link, and ty both for the reassurance that I'm not just making something of nothing, from what I've hard it's very hard to get my LEA to quantify the provisions, especially 1 to 1, citing the need for 'inclusivity' and generally leave it up to the schools to decide how the money is spent, I'm not very good at disagreeing with ppl and tend to just let things pass, but for DS sake I need to stand up for him.
It's not that I don't trust the school not to do right by DS, they have generally been very good with him, but with new staff and especially a new head and SENCO on the horizon I am uncertain that things will remain as positive
Cross posted with you attila, I will check part 2 and look at the link aswell
It's also wrong for the LA to quantify support by reference to a matrix or banding level, because they can change their matrix or banding system at any time.
If there is no quantification in the reports then make it up - very generously and say that this is what you want.
They will try to compromise with you.
Alternatively you could write to all the professionals that wrote the report and ask them to specify as they are most qualified to do so. They will probably resist, but I have heard that if it gets to tribunal the tribunal can insist that they do so in order to be able to quantify a statement.
Make sure that you tell them that they must quantify and quote the law at them - there is some good stuff on the ISPEA site with template letters and case law to support you.
If you're happy with school's current offering, this could listed in minute-by-minute terms ready to be written up as an appendix. And you could keep pointing to current practice as the justification for what you specify and quantify. 'but mrs myangel, they'll do this anyway' 'yes, so no skin off anyone's nose then, a nice easy way for you to obey the law'
Given all your advice and IPSEA it seems clear I'm going to need to dig my heals in on this, with the staff changes looming I need to get this right, I will ring IPSEA help line tomorrow and get some advice as to what my next step should be as I'm not sure if I should ring the person in charge of DS statement to see if we can meet and come to some kind of agreement or just finalise and go straight to tribunal.
The annoying part is the complete dismissal of every change I asked for even though at least 3 things I asked for are clearly stated in the reports, which I also quoted in the letter I sent, it seems to have directly transplanted the sentences from the reports deliberatly removing the key word, so instaed of putting 'DS would benefit from weekly social communication training' they have just put 'DS will recieve access to social communication training'.
I'm tired of feeling like everything is a battle, you have to fight tooth and nail for every little thing it feels like and after reading moosemamas recent post it's just pushed it even further home that I need to make sure it's clear so I have something worthwhile at the end of it.
Thankyou all for your advice, I know now that I'm not just fussy and that my initail thoughts were correct.
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