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I need to do a 'just-in-case' appeal, don't I?

(6 Posts)
pannetone Mon 26-Jan-15 11:43:14

DS3, Year 8, HFA, got a final statement at the beginning of December. It doesn't name a school in Part 4. (Just says 'a mainstream secondary'.) DS hasn't been in school for a year (though he is still on the roll of the secondary he went to for the first term of Y7). He is signed off medically unfit for school because of anxiety. He has some home tuition and we are paying for him to do internet school.

At draft statement stage we asked for the LA to fund internet school for him. They refused and said they want him back in 'proper' school and told us to name one. We didn't have one.

We are not appealing for the LA to fund internet school because now DS thinks he would like to try a small school with small classes. That means an independent mainstream.

The LA say they can't consult with an indi until DS has passed their entrance test and been offered a place.BUT we are still at the stage of DS doing taster days and by the time he sits and passes an entrance test and the LA consults, we would be past the 2 month deadline for appealing.

We are concerned that the LA will then turn round and say DS's needs can be met in a state mainstream - and they will refuse to pay for an indi. The statement isn't 'tightly worded' enough to mean that DS has to be in a small class. And it seems to presume it will be a state mainstream as it says the school will have to meet the first £6000 towards DS's needs and then will get top up funding from the LA.

Hmm - having typed that out I think I have answered my own question! grin Time to appeal!

bjkmummy Mon 26-Jan-15 13:45:33

i think you have pannetonne - you can always formally name the school you want further down the line in the appeal buying you time to get the school to offer a formal place

pannetone Mon 26-Jan-15 13:59:29

Thanks bjk - wise words from a tribunal veteran - I have downloaded the appeal form... Thinking of you preparing for your latest tribunal and sending you many honks and flaps for tomorrow flowers

senvet Tue 27-Jan-15 00:59:52

Yes - do the appeal, and then sort the school. and the evidence,

Your instincts are likely to be right, so keep up with the taster days. And I don't know what this nonsense is about passing entrance tests as lots of small indie schools don't have them

pannetone Tue 27-Jan-15 19:00:10

Thanks senvet - I sent the appeal off today - I already had all my arguments from when I tried to get the LA to amend the draft statement.

All the mainstream indies round here seem to have entrance tests - and yes, we are looking at smaller (less prestigious!) ones. Hopefully they won't be an issue for DS, but for DD (Y5, HFA currently in a 'specialist' indie) it will be an issue. She is academically able but is hugely anxious, especially about being tested and not meeting expectations. She also has selective mutism, so an interview won't be an option!

senvet Wed 28-Jan-15 01:53:45

Great stuff.
I have heard of some good successes with indie mainstream - just getting the class sizes down and putting in visiting SALT and OT did the trick. I was in a small school today with classes down to 5 or fewer where they had ASD and dyslexic kids going off to uni.

If the test environment is off putting, or extra time is needed, then ask the indie schools for what dc needs eg that ds does tests in a separate room (my dd does).

You are at the 'first catch your rabbit' stage of the appeal, so good luck

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