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Enough's enough. Decided that dd is not returning to her school and annual review, any advice?

(24 Posts)
sazale Thu 04-Apr-13 09:45:05

Dd 14 ASD/PDA moved to special school in September after LEA named it on her statement. Against my gut feeling and after reassurances from the LEA we agreed to give it a try.

Despite meetings and prompting the school still haven't put the provision from the statement in place and appear to have zero knowledge of ASD/PDA despite being told the opposite.

Dd 's anxiety is through the roof which of course is making life impossible at home and her distress is to such an extent that I can no longer bring myself to make her attend this school. As it's the holidays no one knows about this yet.

At the last school meeting, where the EP pointed out to the school that they weren't meeting the statement, I requested an early annual review with a view to requesting a change of placement. We are having it the first day back. I have received the headteachers report which doesn't really say much or give me any ideas as to how she has progressed since being there. I believe she's deteriorated in all areas. Should her academic levels have been included? I know she's been attending a phonics class with children on p levels despite her being nc level 5 for english and having a spelling/reading age of 15 just 12 months ago, that's also not in the report!

Do I need to get dd signed off school?

Thanks for reading

babiki Thu 04-Apr-13 09:52:35

Please talk to Ipsea how to do it. I know a family where child regressed to such an extent in a Ofsted judged outstanding special school that they just took her home. However GP refused to provide note off school for anxiety and the family ended up being prosecuted.
I went to Ipsea training recently and they said definitely contact them before saying anything to anyone - I was asking cause I'm planning to HE if ds doesn't get statement before starting school.
Good luck, your poor child, must be awful.

sazale Thu 04-Apr-13 10:16:21

Thanks babiki, I'll defo contact them.

sazale Thu 04-Apr-13 10:18:35

This school is also an ofsted judged outstanding special school!! However, through my volunteer work with the NAS, I have met 3 other families with children that attend there also having the same problems.

zzzzz Thu 04-Apr-13 10:25:46

Sending honks and "be brave" vibes.

Leaving school was terrifying for me. For us all it has been a wonderful success. Ds is happy. Institutions are not for everyone, and certainly not for my little lad. I had no idea how many of his problems stemmed from school (and it was for the most part a good and loving school).

Inappropriatelyemployed Thu 04-Apr-13 10:45:32

I think school is a particular problem for some children with ASD. It can be a case of just trying to get them through to adult life safely! DS goes to a lovely, flexible, supportive school but he struggles so much just being around groups of other children and it gets worse as he gets older.

A break from schooling can give you the perspective you need to decide on the next step whatever that is for you.

Icedcakeandflower Thu 04-Apr-13 10:58:31

Dd, also AS/PDA refused to return to her Indy SS saying she would kill herself if anyone made her.

No one tried to <not sure what emoticon would be appropriate here>. She has been unofficially home schooled for the last year, but is still on roll at the SS!

You are doing what you know is right for her.

sazale Thu 04-Apr-13 11:21:34

Thanks guys. The hardest part is that she needs the structure of school in a bizarre way even though she is demand avoidant! Maybe that's the ASD side. She was crying the other day (before I'd told her about not returning) and said she was confused as she felt that she needed to go back to school even though she hates it! I understood what she meant, bless her.

Due to my complaining about the statement not being delivered the sen manager will also be attending the AR. I intend to ask for an independent special school to be named. I know they won't bane it but I still intend on asking!

I don't intend attempting to educate dd directly as she believes school is for work and only people with a degree can teach but she doesn't always think teachers can teach her anything! I intend to try to reduce her anxiety and try tho work on self care/independence skills as she has none sad and won't interact with us most of the time apart from to shout at us! I'm hoping without the pressure of school that she may become less volatile.

zzzzz Thu 04-Apr-13 12:33:51


lougle Thu 04-Apr-13 13:53:55

Sorry it's all so rough, Sazale. Unfortunately, you don't have the same de-reg rights when your child is at Special School - you can do it, but you have to jump through extra hoops.

In MS school, you can simply send a letter saying that under such and such an act you are exercising your right to educate at home, then withdraw. The LA can then only take action if they have evidence that you aren't providing a suitable education.

With SS, you have have permission of the LA before she can be removed from the role link

MareeyaDolores Thu 04-Apr-13 14:03:28

If you could get her to the school office for the last 10 min of each day to pick up some work which you've provided already under some pretence, then she's "late" rather than absent, and you might have a little crack in to the the 'only-school-controls-academics' problem.

MareeyaDolores Thu 04-Apr-13 14:05:06

Also then it's clear that it's the child who has instigated non-compliance with the unsuitable placement, rather than the parent.

Which might help prove your points at tribunal

sazale Thu 04-Apr-13 15:15:42

Thanks for the ideas.

Lougle, I suspected the dereg might be difficult and my dd has a lot of provision in her statement.

I intend to ask for more suitable provision as the school she is at is unable to provide what is in her statement. It says in her statement that she is to be educated in a lower arousal environment which the SS isn't. She was previously in a very supportive mainstream and it was felt they had done all they could, which they had. They did more without the statement than the SS has with it!! They have totally ignored all the information and work that the mainstream had done and in fact have undone a lot of what they achieved. We worked hard together to keep her in school and a fantastic relationship and here I am only 6 months later feeling I have to remove her.

We are battling every morning with her to go to school and the transport is having to wait and help get her to the minibus. She is having meltdowns in the street while all the local school kids are on their way to the school my NT son attends. That's not fair on my dd or my ds. So in effect she is refusing to go, I suppose.

I'm trying to get an app with CAMHS as she is under the Psych for anxiety. He's not been much use so far as he seems to think that if she goes swimming and to taekwondo it will lessen her anxiety. If only it was that simple.

ToffeeWhirl Thu 04-Apr-13 16:21:51

Sorry you and your DD are having such a difficult time, Sazale. When my son (TS/OCD/ASD traits) couldn't cope with school, he was educated at home by the LEA for a while. They provided online lessons for him. I'm not sure if this is available in every borough, but it might be worth finding out if this could be an option for your DD whilst you are waiting for another school placement. Your DD is supposed to be entitled to a certain number of hours private tutoring from the LEA if she can't attend school too (sorry, can't remember how many).

Unfortunately, the online learning took six months to arrange and then it didn't suit my son at all (we now home educate him), but it might suit your DD. It would be free, whereas Interhigh and Briteschool charge fees.

sazale Sat 06-Apr-13 09:05:45

More food for thought, thanks.

In the headteachers report for annual review it says next to the objective for support to develop social skills that did has no social communication difficulties! Oh my days!

sazale Sat 06-Apr-13 09:06:21

*Dd not did*

MareeyaDolores Sat 06-Apr-13 19:34:19

Sazale, written evidence of professional denial-of-issues can work in your favour, as ability to meet needs requires ability to perceive them.

And certainly when taken to that extreme level wink

sazale Sun 07-Apr-13 08:41:59

Good thinking Mareey. It shows even more their lack of understanding. DD told me yesterday that they'd had her sat at the computer that's in a corner during a pshe lesson and then put a screen behind her to section her off from the other kids as she's struggling to concentrate in some classes! She really hated it but was unable to verbalise it. I'm really not happy!

drowninginlaundry Sun 07-Apr-13 11:19:22

We took DS1 (9) out of his special school in January and he is now home schooled. He has severe autism and very little language. The school had fantastic facilities including four full time speech therapists, swimming pool and whatnot, but it was failing on all counts to teach him anything. Part 3 provision was not put in place for a whole year, no-one had even read it, he spent his days doing art and cooking. He was anxious and frustrated, although he couldn't verbalise it. He changed so much during this time there - his stimming got worse, he became more withdrawn, he would come home and insist on getting out of his school uniform as soon as he walked through the door. The school had lots of other problems which became the straw that broke the camels back including serious safeguarding failures, but the main thing was that DS1 was not happy.

We are now homeschooling as there are no alternatives where we live, I am not even chasing any of the therapies that were in Part 3 as they were ineffective anyway. DS1 is learning, he is happy, and I don't have to deal with any idiots anymore. I think many special schools are so bad and the teaching so abysmally poor that children regress, a seismic shift in attitudes to learning and accountability is needed before DS1 sets his foot in one again.

Good luck with whatever you decided to do next!

veritata Sun 07-Apr-13 14:50:04

Have you thought about taking action to force the LA to make the school provide what is in the statement?

bochead Sun 07-Apr-13 15:24:27

I'd write a note stating that the statemented support is not being provided by this educational placement, resulting in your child's anxieties increasing to such an extent she is being denied access to the National Curriculum. I'd address it to the HT, the LA Officer & the Chair of governors together with a request for a firm date by which I could sure her support would be in place.

Then if you keep her home your back is covered iyswim. I'd also contact IPSEA asap.

Gas lighting - that's the correct technical term for what they do to parents who complain. Been wondering for weeks now.

sazale Sun 07-Apr-13 16:04:18

I wrote to the SEN manager using the IPSEA template. She emailed me with a bit of a brush off about them delegating it to the school etc etc but she intends to attend the annual review!

Everyone is fully aware of the problems the school is causing dd apart from I didn't write to the board of governors.

Do you think I should write to them as well?

I've never heard of gas lighting before!

I hadn't planned on legal action as with even the support in place from the statement it still wouldn't be the right place. The have no aspirations for the kids at all.

bochead Sun 07-Apr-13 16:48:56

"they have no aspirations for the kids at all"

karma'll get em eventually as the whole new SN system coming to replace statements is all based on "outcomes". Culture shock'll hit em hard.

sazale Sun 07-Apr-13 18:13:50

They're like a babysitting service! To be fair to the school they are used to children with learning disabilities and quite profound disabilities so they see dd and in comparison she appears to be quite capable. Her form teacher once said that it's easy to forget there's a reason she's not in mainstream ! The LEA have decided that this is where the high functioning kids who can't cope in mainstream are going to be placed as they are the only special school that do GCSE's (theoretically) and the school don't have the knowledge needed. They did say originally that they couldn't meet dd's needs but after discussions with the lea they decided they could (that's the official line).

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