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autism and Herts

(10 Posts)
theDudesmummy Fri 12-Jan-18 14:39:31

I am faced with a frankly bizarre situation. I'd appreciate anyone's comments!

To cut a very long story short, DS, non-verbal autistic, 8 years old, has been on a home ABA programme for over six years. All those years ago we fought for at tribunal and won from our London borough the current provision which is: half-time home ABA, half-time mainstream school with one to one LSA. It all worked really well and they funded it year after year.

Eventually however, despite everyone working well and a fab school who supported us fantastically, we came to the conclusion that DS was so far behind his peers in every way, and so unable to access any of the learning the other children were doing at school (school was social fun for him, not really a place to learn), that the time had come to move to full-time special school.

I researched thoroughly and went to school open days, and found a school in Hertfordshire which ticked every box and would be fantastic for him. Our ABA consultant supported the move as did the current school. We found a house five minutes from the school, totally uprooted our lives (me after 30 years living in London) and moved there just before Xmas, so we could approach Herts with the address in their area. No-one really thought there would be any real problems as we were no longer going for ABA (Herts is notorious for never funding ABA programmes) but just full-time special school.

Their panel sat this week and the decision was: no change to the provision ie continue exactly as on the EHCP including both the ABA programme AND the same school (ie the mainstream school in London he had been attending part-time, which is now an hour's drive away). They said he did not meet criteria for the special school.

Of course I will be fighting to get the special school, go to tribunal if necessary etc. But in the meantime we have nothing. No ABA programme as I can find no tutors at all in Herts (trying desperately to do so but no luck so far). No school because he can't go back to the previous school, it's a long way away and he has been through the process of saying goodbye, lots of prep went into him leaving the school, all his friends etc. He would never cope with randomly going back again. And how would he get there and back?

So he is basically having no education at all right now and is basically just at home.

It is so bizarre to have fought tooth and nail for the ABA programme six years ago, and now it seems we are going to have to fight to stop it!

Ellie56 Fri 12-Jan-18 16:42:57

Presumably your son has an EHCP? If so ask for an early annual review .

theDudesmummy Fri 12-Jan-18 18:57:16

oh yes he does (has been statemented since he was 3) and we will, but it is just so odd. It seems more incompetence than anything else, when I finally got hold of someone this afternoon they told me to ignore what they had written about him going back to his old school as it was a "mistake" !

amunt Fri 12-Jan-18 19:23:24

That shows just how bloody minded Herts are!! Unbelievable

We are in Herts and won ABA at Tribunal. They used every low trick they could think of.

So you are the only family to get ABA in Hertfordshire without Tribunal fight, but only because you have requested something else.
Good luck, pm me if you need any info, re their 'professionals' etc...

theDudesmummy Sat 13-Jan-18 14:08:01

We were the only family in our previous borough to have ABA at all (and that was only after Tribunal of course!). Oh well, if Herts want to fund an ABA programme then I am jolly well going to make sure that they do, am trying to find tutors now, if anyone knows of any in Herts or who would travel to Herts....

StarlightMcKenzee Sat 20-Jan-18 13:11:28

Oh goodness, - This has to be one of the most ridiculous things.

Herts have said no, - because it is their default response and because they are control freaks who have to show everyone who is in charge. I know people who have worked within the Council who have left and talk about an internal bullying culture too.

I'm so sorry. I hope you get this resolved. You have done everything right and your plans don't sound unreasonable to me.

sickofsocalledexperts Sat 20-Jan-18 15:31:01

Go to the press? naming names in local paper can help focus minds

theDudesmummy Sat 27-Jan-18 13:48:29

Update to situation: weeks on and nothing. DS has no school, no ABA programme, no provision of any kind. He has now been out of school or any provision for weeks. If we as parents had kept a child out of school like this we would be hauled in to court. DH is not able to work as he is having to look after DS full-time.

We told Herts that we cannot find tutors , and they said we should not look for them as they will have to "look into how to get tutors". We told them that we are not prepared to facilitate an ABA programme not run by us and staffed by tutors we have chosen and we manage, in our private home. So if they want an ABA programme they will have to do it in school. But he has no school.

Herts did eventually send us to have a meeting at the local mainstream and they (exactly as we knew they would) said they could not meet his needs. They were lovely and felt awful about it and we reassured them that their assessment coincided with exactly what we say, which is that he needs special school.

I can't go to the press as I would not want my name in the media, for various reasons related to my work. I have gone to the local MP, his office says he has made enquiries to the council but no reply yet.

It's really grinding us down.

theDudesmummy Sat 27-Jan-18 13:50:32

PS they said they were going to arrange SLT and EP assessments but nothing has happened, not even any appointment dates. Just nothing.

amunt Sun 28-Jan-18 16:33:43

Hate to use the term, but these people are scum. They would throw our kids under a bus if they could save a few quid.

They know that whatever happens, each day the passes without DS being educated and DH not working is money saved for them. As far as they are concerned the longer your plight continues the better for them.

Wouldn't you get a different job if your employer was asking you to put families through this sort of misery. These individuals are just like certain other unpleasant people who were "just following orders."

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