What is this?????

(31 Posts)
KOKOagainandagain Sat 05-Nov-16 15:39:44

Ongoing saga re DS2 I'm afraid.

But the thing that most baffles me atm is that the LA have sent (snail mail hard copy) letter asking that parents fill in the regulation form on the website requesting SA...???

But DS2 already has a Statement and is part way through the Transfer process. confused

No assessment was planned for Transfer. I pointed out that full assessment of need should take place for Transfer unless there was agreement not to do so and then the LA wrote saying "as you have requested reassessment ..." fill in the request for SA - LA have 6 weeks to decide whether to assess etc. WTF???

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KOKOagainandagain Sat 05-Nov-16 15:46:41

btw this was not a mistake - the letter was not a pro-forma.

But I also received an email from the same person, that must have been written on the same day, referring to the admissions procedure for DS with a Statement.

something is afoot...

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KOKOagainandagain Sun 06-Nov-16 07:29:11

Has nobody else experienced this?

LA following protocol for DC with a Statement re admissions, transfer process to EHCP already underway - at the same time as asking parents to officially request SA?

I am awaiting legal advice but just can't understand the 'logic' of this.

There's other stuff going on re disability discrimination and removal from the school roll that I can't discuss which may explain this behaviour if it turns out to be very unusual or nonsensical.

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FrayedHem Sun 06-Nov-16 11:57:43

No, that hasn't been my experience. We had a transfer meeting at school with the SENCo and Specialist Teacher. Went through a load of paperwork- I'd been asked for parents' views beforehand, Specialist teacher had done a report. SENCo then merged the info into a document that had to be submitted to the SEN case department at the LA within 2 weeks. As far as I know I am now just in the waiting period before the draft EHCP is issued.

I've had some faffing with the Ed Psych over whether they have to assess him, but at no point have I been asked to fill in a needs request form.

KOKOagainandagain Sun 06-Nov-16 12:25:56

DS1 has a draft ECHP - the final is overdue but we have been sorting out bank details etc for Direct Payment. My LA insisted on EP assessment as his old report was out of date and placement had changed. This was part of the transfer and we did not reapply for SA and was not asked to do so.

DS2's old EP report is out of date, current placement has changed and he is due to start secondary in September. Why would we want to reapply for assessment when he already has a statement? Why do they want us to?

Can the LA cease to maintain, without right of appeal, under any circumstances (bar death)? And not tell us. What if new placement was indi or parents electively HE?

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FrayedHem Sun 06-Nov-16 14:32:38

I'm not really that up on the system but I was told the statement stays in place until an ECHP is issued. And refusal to issue an EHCP could only happen if a full needs assessment had been carried out.

I was told LA wouldn't cease statement for HE but there was no funding attached but would need to continue with AR. Presumably the same for an indi the LA aren't funding.

FrayedHem Sun 06-Nov-16 14:47:36

Being sent a form does sound more of an internal cock-up. Is DS2's transfer being done at Annual Review? Was DS1's at Annual Review? I'm asking as I wonder if your LA are trying to cut corners by only doing needs assessments that coincide with AR and are simply porting statements over that aren't. Totally not lawful but I had an LA employee admit that had happened in our LA.

KOKOagainandagain Sun 06-Nov-16 16:38:22

This is deliberate action rather than a cock up - the SNO wrote two different and contradictory letters on one day - one was sent by email and one in the post. Not signed for.

The question is why?

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FrayedHem Sun 06-Nov-16 17:21:29

It looks like the LA simply don't understand they are required to carry out a full needs assessment as part of the transfer. They have taken it as a parental request and used their available form which they have sent you. I think a reply quoting the relevant transfer legislation etc should put it right.

How far into the EHCP transfer are you?

KOKOagainandagain Sun 06-Nov-16 17:39:32

Oh the LA understand alright - I had SOS!sen starting JR proceedings with DS1shock

Emails are being cc'd upward.

I just don't understand what they are trying to accomplish.

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FrayedHem Sun 06-Nov-16 17:47:33

Oh I see, in that case it could be a stalling tactic? I've only had minor tussles with the EP "service", but I have found since drawing the line they are determined to make everything as awkward as they possibly can.

KOKOagainandagain Sun 06-Nov-16 18:27:33

Thanks frayed flowers

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FrayedHem Sun 06-Nov-16 18:51:57

I hope you get it sorted.

SerendipityPhenomenon Mon 07-Nov-16 18:24:58

It sounds like a typical LA cock-up. Point out the transition regulations to them, especially section 5 which sets out the fact that they have to do a full assessment so it's not something you have to ask for.

They can't cease to maintain without telling you, and if they tried the statement would have to stay in place until an appeal had been heard.

MeirAya Tue 08-Nov-16 01:48:59

Keep- I reckon LA are officially out to shaft your family again
Probably by saying no assessment is needed so you have to JR them
Maybe by making you shove in a SA request -so it's tribunal with delays - and not rapid court for JR

But it's just possible that a lowly minion (whose minimum wage temp job isn't tied to anti-SEN targets) has decided to accidentally-on-purpose scupper the evil plans

by having parents throw spammers in the works in response to a 'just request a SA mailshot'

KOKOagainandagain Tue 08-Nov-16 06:28:22

My LA like to do things in secret and then, usually at a supposedly official transfer review or AR, will calmly state that the meeting is not actually TR/AR and present you with a fait accompli.

We only found out by mistake that DS2 had been removed from the school roll when CME emailed to find out where we had moved to. We had not moved and even if we had, the regulations were not followed. There were no valid grounds for removal, especially as he has a statement. Turns out this is significant in a legal sense and the LA are now scrambling to get him back on the roll of the school named in Part 4. LAs are supposed to be fully involved in the prosecution of the small number of schools that force pupils with SEN/Statements out of the school and then illegally remove them from the roll.

I think the LA need parental requests, signatures etc to make things that they have already done look legal. I can understand why they want to get him back on the school roll before legal action is officially taken but the fact they are trying to orchestrate application for SA suggests that they have already laid the paper trail (even if not shared with parents) to cease to maintain and have now done a handbrake turn/u-turn and are trying to make that look legal/reasonable iyswim.

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KOKOagainandagain Tue 08-Nov-16 06:35:50

meir flowers for getting that this is deliberate rather than a cock up.

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youarenotkiddingme Tue 08-Nov-16 21:27:01

Of course it's deliberate keep

You know more than the LA bods and remind them of their statutory duties - therefore you are dangerous to them.

It's what I've come to realise whilst going through what I have with DS. Once certain establishments or departments flour the law and are reminded of it - their defence is to attack rather than say 'whoops, give me 7 days to review this and correct it'

claw12 Tue 08-Nov-16 22:38:07

Hey ya keep smile

Delay/avoidance/smoke scene tech!

Same position as you, statement to ECHP transfer, had a draft ECHP, waiting on LA EP to finalise...assessment a month ago!

Threatened JR....Decided 'more info' is needed!

KOKOagainandagain Wed 09-Nov-16 08:50:58

claw - I am still waiting for the final for DS1. It is months overdue. It took JR to get the statement transferred to EHCP. I think it is worth getting back to SOS!SEN legal person re non-materialisation of the final. The reason I have not done so so far is because it's not possible to have a personal budget with a statement - DC need an EHCP. The paperwork for a personal budget has been signed.

I wish I could just ask them and get a straight answer instead of playing a stupid tactical game where only the LA know the rules angry

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claw12 Wed 09-Nov-16 12:58:36

I am just sitting here, thinking there are never any consequences for LA. For example JR, can just make the LA do what they are supposed to do legally....eventually. What about all the months of time wasting and ignoring the law prior to that.

Our threat of JR deadline has been totally ignored by the LA. They haven't even bothered replying. Usual circle of ignore, until a week before hearing, then back down.

Red tape bollox.

SerendipityPhenomenon Thu 10-Nov-16 07:17:57

claw, they won't ignore a formal pre-action letter - it's worth getting on to SOS SEN about that.

Once it's sorted I would also separately do an ombudsman complaint. LAs tend to take them more seriously, and they can recommend compensation - I don't think it's massive amounts, but the fact that someone at the LA has to sign off on a cheque tends to lead to questions being asked. You might need to go through the LA's complaint system first.

KOKOagainandagain Thu 10-Nov-16 07:52:23

SP - JR isn't as fast as you would think because of having to jump through hoops to make JR appear the only course of action remaining. Before SOS!SEN issued pre-action letter for DS1 we had to go through a series of emails where the wording was supplied by them but formally came from parents. Then notice of JR, then pre-action letter, then reply from LA solicitors etc.

Even then the LA are sneaky - ours claimed via solicitors reply to JR pre-action that they couldn't find SALT or OT and would fund if they could. Adding that parents were too fussy and wouldn't behave reasonably and accept unqualified therapists for half the amount of time. Actually they had ignored responses to their half-hearted search. Parents sent out emails and found SALT and OT no problem including several that had already told the LA they were available.

The pre-action letter was sent in March and here we are in November with some progress, SALT and OT and tutor due to start but still no final. Tribunal would have been faster if the LA had not denied us right of appeal by just pretending his existing statement was unenforceable.

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claw12 Thu 10-Nov-16 20:14:36

It was solicitor who sent the letter. They have replied, late, but a reply!

As keep says I had sent numerous emails, quoting the exact same law as solicitor.....they ignored.

Their reply doesn't change the fact Ds continues to be without a school and probably will be for some time, while we fart arse about with home tution and such like

KOKOagainandagain Fri 11-Nov-16 10:19:43

I'd watch them claw understatement

Even after the JR pre-action letter the LA tried to claim that the transfer meeting was supposed to be a normal annual review and spent an hour trying to force me to accept that DS1 was never going to return to school and to accept alternative 6 week placement in a social enterprise for disaffected yuf. Pincer movement with Autism Outreach and LA SNO and EOTAS all agreeing with each other that this was the best course of action and trying to make it official and make a referral.

I had already completed the transfer review documentation (to help them) that I found on the website and steamrollered it through. Without that I think they would have argued that parents agreed with the plan of doing nothing (apart from social enterprise) at the meeting which was nothing to do with transferring from statement to EHCP.

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