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How do you go about getting your child assessed?

(20 Posts)
Pinkchampagne Fri 08-Sep-06 14:51:00

My DS1 has had difficulties with social skills, concentration, fine & gross motor skills and various other things, since he was at nursery.
He is now nearly 7 & school have expressed concerns since he started in reception. I am getting increasingly (sp?) worried about him & after looking on a dyspraxia website, I noticed he ticked pretty much every box.
I have shown this list to the SENCO at the school, who agreed & made a copy for his class teacher, but she doesn't seem to be pushing for assessment of any kind.
I then spoke to my HV & she told me that he would need to be assessed by an Ed pysch, but that it would have to come from the SENCO, not a gp.
I was just wondering if anyone could give me any info on where I should start & what I should do.
TIA.

Pinkchampagne Fri 08-Sep-06 15:35:25

Anyone?

Dingle Fri 08-Sep-06 16:29:35

Hi PC, not really in any position to advise. My daughter has DS and about to start school with no assessment as our LEA have refused it. We are just about to appeal.

You can request the LEA to carry out an assessment yourself, it will start the ball rolling anyway. The school will then have to submit "evidence" ans well as yourself before the LEA decide if an assessment is needed.

Good luck.

dinosaur Fri 08-Sep-06 16:32:23

I don't really see why the referral has to come from a SENCo. I'm going to ask our GP for a referral for DS3.

Take a copy of the list to your GP and tell him/her that the SENCo agrees with you.

The person you really need is Bibliophile, she got her DS assessed for dyspraxia and the process seemed to be quite quick. Maybe if you start a thread specifically mentioning dysprasia in the title, that might attract her attention?

Tiggiwinkle Fri 08-Sep-06 16:36:28

Pinkchampagne-You can ask your GP for a referral to your local Child Development Centre for assessment. This is what I did with one of my DSs who has dyspraxia. The school kept fobbing me off, but I knew there was a problem and went the GP route. My DS was eventully seen by an ed psych, but as a result of the assessment by the CDC and subsequent acknowledgement of his problems.

LIZS Fri 08-Sep-06 16:41:48

GP can refer you to a Developmental Paediatrician who will then decide whether to refer on for an Occupational Therapist assessment . Be warned, although ds got to see the paed within a month the wait for an OT assessment is 14 months around here (a year so far and counting) . He had private OT abroad so we know what the problem is and what he needs already but just can't access it here that easily

pinkchampagne Fri 08-Sep-06 16:43:33

Thank you all. I will go along to my gp & see if I can get a referral that way, as both SENCO & HV seem to think I should put it off. I feel it has been put off long enough now & I want to know one way or the other.

pinkchampagne Fri 08-Sep-06 16:44:34

Oh dear, LIZS, that sounds like a very long wait.

Tiggiwinkle Fri 08-Sep-06 16:46:19

Do not be put off Pinkchampagne-the earlier he gets help the better, and there is likely to be a wait for assessment anyway. School kept saying my DS was "immature"-I wish I had taken action sooner than I did!

Kittypickle Fri 08-Sep-06 16:52:37

As the others have said there are two routes. Either via the school or by your GP. Not all the children in our area get seen by CDC, my DD's route was community paed. to Co-ordination clinic where she was assessed and diagnosed.

I think if I were you I would go via the GP but go back in to talk to the SENCO, what is she doing about his problems ? Does he have an IEP and do they give him extra things like writing board & special pencil to help him in class ?

Lizs, your post makes me realise how lucky we have been, much much quicker here, about 3 months for an assessment. Though apparently provision for children with co-ordination problems is going to be the first to go apparently.

pinkchampagne Fri 08-Sep-06 16:52:47

HV seemed to think that the GP wouldn't do much & that it should really come from the SENCO.
I will make an appointment with the GP, as I feel he is starting to stand out amongst his peers more & more now.

pinkchampagne Fri 08-Sep-06 16:55:48

He does have an IEP (has had one since nursery) & is school action. He was using a triangular pencil in year 1, & assume he still is (he has just gone into yr 2), he was also going out with the speech & language groups to try & improve his concentration.

Kittypickle Fri 08-Sep-06 17:04:37

I'd give him a week to settle then I'd go and see his teacher and see what she thinks, a supportive class teacher helps I have found. But still go ahead and do the GP route. We were warned that as DD got older the gap between her and her peers would increase. So far with lots of help from the school (we have a brilliant new SENCO who has one on one sessions with her) it hasn't been too bad, though she struggles socially a bit which I am trying to work on.

pinkchampagne Fri 08-Sep-06 17:09:27

Yes, my DS struggles socially too. He often wanders around alone in the playground & struggles with birthday parties etc. He also shows little interest in physical activities & is very lathargic.
I will speak to his new class teacher. She is a very good teacher, who has a lot of experience.
I will take him along to the GP as well, as I feel things may get moving quicker that way.

Tiggiwinkle Fri 08-Sep-06 17:36:38

Stress that his difficulties are not only related to school activities-I assume he has difficulties with a knife and fork, for instance. The problem is a medical one, as well as an educational one, and affects his ability to cope with activities of daily living. It is therefore not just a matter for the school and the SENCO.

Kittypickle Fri 08-Sep-06 17:47:53

I agree with Tiggiwinkle, the whole eating thing is a big issue here. It was after she turned in a mashed potato medusa head whilst her 2 year old brother was pretty clean that triggered the latest referral back for OT ! It's probably worth sitting down and getting as much as you can down on paper. I bet there are loads of things you are doing for him that other mothers aren't doing for children of similar ages.

Examples with my DD (7) are that she can't strap herself in the car as yet,I have to watch her like a hawk when walking down the street so she doesn't bump into lamposts/people. She needs much more help washing, hair brushing, teeth cleaning than a lot of her friends. I think you get used to doing things and see them as normal when really they are over and above the help that other children need.

pinkchampagne Fri 08-Sep-06 18:06:10

Absolutely! He is terrible at mealtimes. He hasn't got the gist of how to use a knife properly & often uses his fingers to eat. He also sits very slouched in his chair while he is eating.
My 3 year old DS is already attempting to dress himself & wants to be far more independant than DS1. Seeing the difference in the two of them really hits home that DS1 does have a problem.
We have the seatbelt thing too, kittypickle! He never attempts to put his belt on without you nagging him & then he makes very hard work of it.

Saker Fri 08-Sep-06 18:34:21

I can recommend the book "The Out-of-synch child has fun" by Carol Stock-Kranowitz for lots of ideas on activities you can do with him at home while waiting to see a GP. The book by Amanda Kirby (I think it's just called Dyspraxia is good too). My Ds2 (now 5) has a lot of dyspraxic type symptons although we don't have a diagnosis because he also has social communication and language difficulties which appears to muddy the water. We have seen several occupational therapists via the NHS and they have none of them been very useful mainly just giving me sheets of activities which Ds2 couldn't begin to do, so you may find you have to work by yourself on actual therapy or else go privately. I don't mean you shouldn't see the GP and get referred to the paed for a diagnosis though, and the standard of OT varies a lot from area to area. Have you looked at the Dyscovery Centre website - that has a lot of useful information also.

pinkchampagne Fri 08-Sep-06 20:48:30

Thanks for the book reccomendations, saker. I will look out for those. I hadn't heard of the dyscovery centre website. I will take a look now! Thank you.
Dino, I didn't realise you were having concerns about DS3.

kazzymc Wed 16-Sep-09 18:18:20

torture your health visitor till she refers you to community health- occupatitional therapy- speach therapy- peadiatricion- behavior phychologist.
also speak to the teacher regulary and if your not happy she will make the referal to the educational phychologist. if she doent you can write to the board.
sometimes you have to demand these things and not ask for them for it would suprise you how little teachers gps and health visitors know about this. they have a tendancy to put it down to slow learning, attention seeking and say they will grow out of it.
i had all these problems especially from my family with my son. they couldnt see what i seen and i belive every parent knows their childs abilities and knows when things just arent right. being a good parent is about wanting the best for your children and if you believe things just dont seem to be right you have the right to have them seen to even if it is just for peace of mind.
not all children grow at the same rate and some are better at certain things than other but its hard watching your child stuggle or getting frustrated when no one can understand them. getting to speach therapy and occupational therapy as soon as possible can make a huge difference. a year ago my 5 year old could not be understood by anyone but constant therapy and he almost talking like a normal child of his age and he is now doing so much better in his education (has an assistant provided by selb through his teacher and educational phychologist) and mixing alot better with other children building his confidence.
still having problems with his coordination but one hudle at a time as it is with this difficulty. its all about patience and understanding, but when it comes to getting the therapys and assistants you got to be demanding and tell them what you need/want.

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