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EHCP - is it worth appealing(16 Posts)
ds1's EHCP has just been finalised against our wishes. Please tell me if the below is as bad as I think it is & if you would bother appealing. Whilst his support is OK currently he might want to go somewhere different for sixth form (in eighteen months time) so need his EHCP to be clear.
Summary of Needs
Overarching needs relating to social, emotional well being and behaviour
To recognise and manage feelings of anxiety and identify stressors. XXX to utilise his own strategies but also to be supported by cognitive behavioural approach. The school environment to be managed to reduce potential stress where possible for xxxx.
Opportunities for xxxx to have positive interactions with his peers and to gain a sense of belonging.
XXX is sensitive to sounds and he is distracted by lots of noise.
Difficulties following or remembering instruction with too much noise.
XXX can react negatively to the taste and texture of food.
He can be sensitive to the taste and texture of food.
He can over or under dress for the temperatures
He dislikes haircutting / shampooing and his nails being cut.
Emotional, Social and Behavioural difficulties
Social Communication Difficulties
Poor Social Interaction skills with adult and peers
Rigidity of Thought
Lack of Empathy
Stress and Anxiety
Autistic Spectrum Disorder
The rest is in similar vein and I might add he does not do and never has done any cognitive behaviour therapy. What strikes me now on copying it out is the total lack of comment with respect to academic support which was in his original statement (sorry should have said this was a transfer of statement to EHCP).
Yes it is. IPSEA have an excellent EHCP checklist which outlines what each section should say ( clue: not what's above). You are your son's best ( and perhaps only) advocate, do what's best for him. Best of luck!
Yes it is worth appealing. Here is a checklist:
If this is a transfer from a statement to EHCP did they carry out any new assessments?
Thank you for the link.
No, no new assessments were carried out. We foolishly assumed that as the statement was OK the EHCP would be a cut and paste job and OK too. Instead they seem to have placed most emphasis on sensory issues (because school assessed for this fairly recently) which are honestly not too bad unless he is anxious and ignored the anxiety and academics (which has not been assessed recently but is supported currently in school).
They also exceeded the time schedule by months i.e. we sent in our request for amendments in October and they sent a message to say they had not been accepted last week. This was after numerous calls saying where was it!!!
I guess why I am hesitating is that I am getting wound up by the poor wording and repetition (I would be mortified to send out a document like that professionally) and this is masking whether or not the support (which after all is what matters) is in the document.
dh and I are also confused as to what they mean by a "need". I think they are interpreting it as a "difficulty"whereas we are thinking it should be what "help" he needs. In what possible way is "He dislikes having his hair cut" a need, and even if it was, why is there nothing in the EHCP to say how this will be achieved (actually he goes fairly regularly to get his haircut so is not a big problem so shouldn't be in the document let alone a priority at all).
And breathe ......
It is a legal requirement that new assessments are carried out prior to transferring from a statement to an EHCP. It should not be a cut and paste job which is what a lot of LAs are doing to meet the deadline.
Special Educational Needs (all the "difficulties") should be in Section B of the document and the provision to meet these needs (the "help" he will get to meet these needs) should be in Section F.
Whoever has written your document appears to have put some provision in the "Summary of Needs" which is poor in itself. And clearly if there is no longer a need in relation to the hair cutting that shouldn't be there at all .
But the key thing I would be focusing on is what is not in the EHCP as a result of not having updated assessments. Information here about what other assessments should have been carried out as a minimum.
I would definitely appeal as this EHCP is a legal document and needs to be an accurate reflection of your son's needs now and be very specific in terms of what is going to be put in place to meet each of those needs.
You can get further advice from IPSEA or SOS!SEN
Thank you for help Ellie. Over-whelmed by it particularly as we have ds2's coming up too. At least we have already asked for new assessments for his having learnt slightly from the experience with ds1.
If possible, you'd probably find it helpful to go to one of SOS SEN's workshops on appeals - I think there's one on 5th March. Alternatively their booklet on appeals is useful - www.sossen.org.uk/news.php
The wording around ' needs' is really confusing and is caused by ( in my view) poor wording in the Code of Practice. 'Needs' are actually the child's difficulties ( or weaknesses). What the child needs is called provision. The provision is whet the child needs to achieve the outcomes in the plan.
I'm an EP and have sat in so many meetings where people have been confused by this, it's not helpful. I use the term ' strengths and difficultues' in reports for this reason.
Yes it took me a while to get my head round all the jargon, Boogle.
Thank you Boogle that explanation makes it a lot clearer what type of information this section should contain. Perhaps I should send your explanation to the person who wrote this EHCP as clearly they are as confused as me given that half of what they have written is provision and not needs (difficulties).
Do you work for a local authority, Boogle? If so, can you explain why they obsess about having separate lists of strengths and difficulties? I'm all for acknowledging strengths, but I just don't think they separate out into neat lists like that - it's not helpful to say that, say, a child has a strength in remembering multiplication tables if the reality is that they can't apply it in any way.
Did you agree that no new assessments were necessary?
Section B is special educational needs (difficulties)
Section F is provision to meet needs identified in section B.
Just want to echo what everyone else has said....YES DEFINITELY APPEAL x
In my son's section B I have got the difficulties but also what he needs support in/ needs to learn to do, for each difficulty and then the corresponding provision in section F.
He interacts only on his own terms and needs support to learn to tolerate interactions initiated by others with section F giving the actual support.