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I'm expecting a draft EHCP I won't be happy about ...

(13 Posts)
mochalight Wed 22-Mar-17 22:49:19

Hi all a while ago I posted and asked if I can request the school for the report they submitted for EHCP. I finally got it and am very unhappy about it. It is very brief for a start, and some outcomes are dated (they submitted it when I first made the request and didn't send in an updated one at the assessment stage - I asked and at the beginning they refused to share and now it's too late for me to demand an updated one) and in terms of provisions to meet outcomes they didn't specify how often and by whom. The EP's report is similarly bad and I only realise now that they should be more specific and quantified.

Now trying to think ahead as I'm expecting a draft plan soon - if anyone can give me some advice that'd be great, thanks a lot.

- am I able to request for revision of outcomes when I receive the draft plan?

- dd is under 5 so she can have a review in 6 months: should I accept the plan even if I'm not entirely happy with it and then sort out private EP report afterwards and request for better provision at the review?

Megatherium Wed 22-Mar-17 22:56:13

Write to the LA immediately pointing out that they are required to have a detailed and complete description of your child's needs, plus detailed and specific provision in the Plan, and say you are very concerned that the EP hasn't recommended any, so please will they go back to him/her immediately to get the information they need.

Did they get other relevant expert evidence, e.g. speech and language or occupational therapy? If not, again, write to them, quoting regulation 6 of the SEND regulations, and ask them to arrange them immediately, again instructing them to advise on detailed and specified support.

You can certainly ask for outcomes and indeed anything else in the plan to be changed when you get the draft. Have a look at the information in chapter 9 of the Code of Practice generally about how that is supposed to work.

It might be worth getting SOS SEN to help with checking the draft when you get it.

mochalight Thu 23-Mar-17 17:11:34

Thanks Mega. it's too late now as I just found out the plan has been posted to me though I haven't received it yet. I guess I will just have to wait and see what are written in there. Yes the SALT and OT did submit reports but I can't access the SALT one despite numerous requests so don't know how 'good' it can be. I will receive that report in the post; the only specific, detailed one I have is the private SALT one but LA can just ignore it?!

I feel like I've failed my dd in not requesting the EP and school to update their reports ...

Would it be a good strategy for me to accept the plan now and request for better provision at the review in 6 months, by that time with evidence from private EP?

Thanks!

vjg13 Sat 25-Mar-17 08:29:13

My daughter's statement was transferred to EHCP last year, we waited in excess of 24 weeks to obtain the first draft which was very poor. No new reports had been obtained and it was cobbled together from out of date information from her statement. I used the checking service that SOS SEN offered and it was excellent. They advised informing the LEA that the draft was in breach of the code of practice as my daughter's needs were not accurately specified and any provision would be flawed.

I insisted that new reports were obtained and the draft was rewritten, the LEA tried to persuade us to accept the draft as it was and they would change it later but I was advised by SOS SEN and Education Equality to not do this.

We did obtain new reports eventually and the final plan was much improved, our end game was to obtain a place at a specialist college and showing local FE provision did not meet her needs. We are still waiting the confirmation of the college place we want as the LEA now seeks funding.

Remember this is just a draft and a starting point, do have it checked and try to get your indie SALT report included. Do go back to the professionals and school and get those reports improved/ updated. The EP report my LEA obtained had lots of woolly recommendations and when reminded of the COP, he did improve it slightly. I spent a lot of last year doing this and it took well in excess of 40 weeks!

Megatherium Sat 25-Mar-17 12:14:56

If the LA ignore your private report they're supposed to explain their reasons in section F. Go through the draft in detail by reference to everything set out in paragraph 9.69 of the Code of Practice and push them to comply with it.

mochalight Tue 28-Mar-17 00:28:44

Thanks very much both. I finally received the draft and am very unhappy with it. Section F is awful and nothing specific - even the number of hours of 1:1 support/facilitation is not included there! The provisions are not updated and not specifically linked to the outcomes. A lot of vague words like 'access to', 'adult', 'staff named member', 'regular' are seen, and nothing quantified. I did expect it to be bad but not so bad that I think the whole plan is not usable.

I am planning to get it checked by education equality as can't get through to SOSSEN today. But I will try calling SOSSEN again tomorrow.

vjg at which point did you tell LA that they are in breach of CoP? I think of getting it checked but now I see that it's so bad maybe I should save the money and go back to them straightaway?

Mega the private SALT report is of course ignored and no reason explained. I requested for personal budgets and it's not there! They have totally ignored statutory requirements and my requests. This week is the 20th week deadline and I'm still at this stage. Feel really awful.

Megatherium Tue 28-Mar-17 07:18:52

I'm afraid it's not at all unusual. I would suggest that, apart from anything else, you complain to the head of department and your local councillor, and maybe the Department for Education. LAs really need to be called on this sort of nonsense every time, and not just by tribunal appeals.

vjg13 Tue 28-Mar-17 20:03:15

Mocha, I was advised to do that by SOS SEN when they had checked the first dreadful draft. I contacted them by email. I found it helpful to preface comments with 'an independent organisation has checked this'. etc

The LEA had also already exceeded the time limit and I was worried they would try to rush through a final plan, this was exactly what the LEA did.

Try not to panic, I think getting the initial check is worth while so that you can respond to the LEA with all the issues. SOS Sen actually rewrote a lot of the outcomes in my daughter's plan for the final draft so it actually made sense.

mochalight Tue 28-Mar-17 22:58:02

Thanks both again. I called SOSSEN and the advice I've got is to write back to LA now and request for a new draft as the current one is illegal and does not fit the purpose. From a brief description the adviser could tell how dreadful the one I've got is and she didn't think I need to get it checked and advised me to just go back to them and demand a new draft asap. As I read through the plan again I can see it's not a proper plan at all. While I'm super unhappy with the LA EP report even that EP's proposed outcomes are not included in the plan, and the provisions in Section F are so vague and minimal that it's impossible to meet those needs in Section B. I just can't accept this plan. I think it could be that I kept chasing them and they simply gave me this draft to shut my mouth.

vjg did you go to the appeal stage at the end? The advice I've got from SOSSEN is if the LA ignores my request and continues to mess around I should ask them to finalise the plan and go straight to appeal. *
Mega* do you know if I go to appeal my dd can still have the provisions specified in the dreadful plan at least while we are appealing? That's what SOSSEN told me - I will appeal for better provisions but she can still have what's said in the final plan and go to the school we name.
Thanks!

mochalight Tue 28-Mar-17 22:59:46

It should say mega at the beginning of the last paragraph - no idea where those * came from ...

Megatherium Wed 29-Mar-17 07:51:19

Yes, if they finalise the Plan then it has legal force from the date it is finalised unless and until it is amended, so your DD should get whatever is in parts F and I.

vjg13 Wed 29-Mar-17 16:21:26

Have sent you a PM with a few details but we didn't need to appeal in the end. They gave me that advice too but I did get significant changes in the draft.

mochalight Fri 31-Mar-17 23:09:24

Thanks both again smile
I wrote to the LA stating my disagreement and that the draft does not comply with the law and reminded them they are in breach of legal duty as the 20 week deadline has passed. They immediately called (they always tried to avoid emails if possible but I always follow up the phone conversation with an email - another cunning LA strategy) and asked for a meeting. So I'm going to meet them early next week. I'm slightly concerned though that some of the LA reports are crap, however, I do have private reports they have ignored.

Mega is regulation 9.61 of send CoP 2014 the one I should quote to ask them to include private reports in the plan? As I read through section 9, almost all things my LA has been doing are illegal.

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