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Decisions about Secondary School and childcare(5 Posts)
Hi, i'm a single parent of a 10 year old boy who has ASD. He's currently in mainstream with an EHCP plan and one to one support. I'm finding it hard to make a decision on a secondary school for him. I have one in mind but i'm still so unsure of what the future holds for him and us. Most of the secondary schools in my area have outstanding ofsteds and all cater for special needs. I currently work part time in a very unsocial hours job which I can't change so childcare is/has been difficult. I am trying to envisage the future of when he is a bit older and how he is going to cope going to school when i'm at work. He wouldn't be able to walk to school on his own because the one in mind is too far away from my house. I very much doubt he would be entitled to free transport. I don't even know if he will be capable of travelling to school on his own if I can't find anyone to help. I'm getting very stressed thinking about the lack of childcare options for him, whether he will cope at the school i'm thinking of and just that 'big unknown' of the future with it all.
I currently have a couple of other mums from the school helping me out with after school at the moment, but the whole arrangement feels so insecure as i've been let down a few times. There don't seem to be any childminders in the area with availability. Family aren't around to help and his dad lives in another county so he's out of the question as well. I'm so struggling with all these thoughts and decisions on my own, when I don't know how DS will cope with any of it. Can anyone offer any words of advice? TIA
No real advice but bumping for you.
I don't know enough about SEN transport (mine get it but different scenario as their school is 15 miles away) - but I'm fairly sure it will depend on whether your DS goes to the nearest suitable school to meet his needs and how far away that is.
So if you chose School B 4 miles away but the LA say School A 2 miles away can meet need, you may get School B as your parental preference but the LA will say no transport as School A could meet need and is under the distance of journey secondary school students are expected to manage.
But I don't know how SEN/ability to make an independent journey affects this. So, for example, your DS can't manage the journey to School B 4 miles away, but he couldn't manage the 2 miles to School A either. I think the LA have to take into account that SEN may prevent the child from making a journey they might otherwise be expected to make.
Not sure if that helps much...
IPSEA is probably a better bet than my thoughts! Does this help?
I have a semi retired friend who helps me around my working times. DD is already at a specialist placement however and has taxi transport from door to door. My friend "babysits" her for me after school usually 2 days a week as I can't safely leave her alone at home for more than a very short time. I pay babysitting rates to her and she usually comes and tidies my kitchen a bit for me and enjoys a cuppa and a chat with DD until DH gets home. (DD is 13 now). Perhaps you know someone or someone you know will know someone who might be up for a more informal arrangement, perhaps someone who would do a few drop off or pick up slots too?
Thanks for all the replies, we won't get free transport as there is a nearer school to us than the one i'm thinking of, but it has a bad reputation and I don't want him to go there. I think you only get free transport to the nearest school appropriate.
As for the childcare situation I think I need to get my thinking cap on and try and find someone more reliable who won't let me down. Thanks again