Here are some suggested organisations that offer expert advice on SN.
...and so it begins again...(9 Posts)
Ds starts school tomorrow. School have said they want him to have some additional 1:1 (obv at extra cost). So far, so good, he probably does need it. So I asked (given that we have no say in who is appointed as 1:1):
what support was planned, and for a broad outline of the areas of need,
what qualifications the TA has in SEN (in particular ASD), and
an assurance the extra help would be used to help him feel comfortable within the classroom, rather than withdrawing him for the 1:1 (no point, for ds, he has no issues aside from social ones/inability to cope with numbers of people).
No reply until 10 minutes ago, when I get a cursory 'TA has completed the SEN training in all areas of support' which is either so vague as to be meaningless (ie, TA has done the mandatory 4 hours), or a barefaced lie (I mean, really, TA is PECS trained, Makaton trained, has full first aid and medical training for severely physically disabled children, is trained in restraint and handling, as well as TEACCH, BSL, Braille, the list is endless, isn't it?)
Why does it have to be so hard? All I want is assurance that, since I'm being asked to pay for it, the person allocated to help my son is actually going to help him.
No, not a state school, but yes UK.
I know that technically private schools don't need to adhere to codes of practice, but it really isn't asking much that a person employed specifically to help 2 reception age boys with additional needs (TA is shared between ds and another boy - don't know who, or what additional needs) might actually be qualified to do the job they are employed for.
And it's not asking much that any planning overview is shared with parents.
The email went on to say that 'once ds has settled, Class Teacher and SENCO will draw up an IEP which will be shared with you', umm, not on your nelly - I'll be included in the target setting, thanks.
What's worse, ds will be my second child with ASD at this school - and I asked all the same things of support put in place for dd2, attend IEP setting meetings etc. Why do they think I won't want to know for ds?!
Send them a check list with all the things you can think of on it, and space to add date and who gave each course.
It's just so wearing, zzzzz. And you'd think, after the last couple of years with dd2, they'd have a massive sticker on my file saying 'don't mess'
Still, at least I know where I stand, and am drafting a suitable 'yeah, that didn't actually answer what I asked' reply.
. Let's face it. Sticking on message and focused is one of the things most of us on here are pretty practiced at. When I get that exhausted out of puff feeling I just write down all the next few steps and then follow my plan.
They are annoying but they will learn.
And so, an update.
Term started, we all got ill, and time moved on.
Despite not actually giving me the information I requested, upon which our agreement for 1:1 going ahead rested, school went ahead and started ds' 1:1, without our say so.
And didn't tell us - I heard it first from ds.
I have expressed my displeasure at this, and the fact that they still cannot produce any identified areas of need, a support plan, or any qualifications which the TA may hold.
This is not looking good.
I just hate that it is all such a struggle.
With dd1 I fought for years to get her learning potential recognised (she has severe ASD, and is now in an ABA school where her strengths are recognised and worked with).
With dd2 I argued for years to get her ASD recognised - she is an expert at masking, and will not admit any weakness (in her eyes). School are finally beginning to realise the depths of some of her issues.
And now ds, who whilst he has an ASD dx, is settling really well into school. I raised it with school so that they were aware, and now all of a sudden he apparently 'needs' 1:1 (without any learning need being identified). I think his dx is being used as a convenient excuse to get extra help into the classroom, and making us pay for it. I have no problem at all with him having 1:1 if he actually needs it. I do have a problem with him being taken off for 1:1 work 'because he has ASD and so needs it' which I am just not prepared to accept.
And it is the beginning of another school term, and yet again I am chasing whether dd2 has any support at all, am trying to even get a decent glimpse of ds' IEP (which I hold out no hope for being SMART), have no chance of seeing dd2's IEP until about half term.
It shouldn't be this hard. Both dd2 and Ds are HF - above average academically, and eccentric/quirky rather than massive issues in the classroom. I have no idea why the school have to be so difficult about it all.
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