We have been refused assessment for an EHCP for dd and are probably going to tribunal again. She has never had a proper EP assessment. She is doing well academically but there are areas she struggles with which adds to her anxiety. She is doing GCSEs this summer, then moving on to A levels so I think the struggles can only get worse. I have contacted a local independent EP and the fees will be £800 - £1000 which rather made me gulp. I think that apart from the tribunal evidence, a good report will help us and school know how to help her and dd to know how to help herself as she is able and motivated. She has a complicated profile with dx ASD and dyslexia, suspected sensory processing difficulties and mobility difficulties attributed to conversion disorder so I think that she needs more than a cursory assessment. Are those fees par for the course? And will such a report be worth it?
Those fees are around the norm, but make sure that it's someone with experience of tribunals. They need not to be scared of going to tribunals, and they need to know how to write the sort of reports that tribunals need. If in doubt, ask someone like SOS SEN for EP names.
I'd say those fees are rather low for a tribunal savvy EP if they include VAT. Don't forget that you will also have to pay a fee to have them attend tribunal as an expert witness (I have paid about 1K for a whole day plus VAT).
It is really important to get an experienced EP. I used Ruth Birnbaum for DS. She wrote a book about choosing and SEN school and is always booked up for months ahead. Ruth will write a concise and well reasoned report focusing on the key issues for tribunal.
For DS2 I did not book in time to get Ruth and had huge problems finding someone who could write a report and attend tribunal. The person who was available turned about to be useless (but expensive). The report was 80 pages long (before school observation) and was a terrible piece of writing (even though this person had a doctorate) - mostly repeating information that was in the bundle I gave to them with no analysis and nothing added as well as internally repetitive as there was also a 10+ page summary of the report. I did not even have the draft finalised and did not submit the report to tribunal and had to go to hearing with no indi EP. Still had to pay though.
No those fees are only for the assessment and report. Tribunal attendance would be more and I haven't decided yet if we would need her there. The assessment fees are double anyone else locally but she has given much better information about what she would do and does have the ASD experience and interest.
Sounds about right. I have used two EPs and they was in that region.
My first EP didn't come recommended and the second one did. I preferred my first EP as my second one backtracked on his own findings on the day. Very shocked. Also make sure they will quantify and specify what provision is needed in their reports and not change their mind on the day about what they specify.
I think most EPs are a weird bunch and I find them very hard to get on with