Here are some suggested organisations that offer expert advice on SN.
Bumblelion - re Statementing(3 Posts)
I thought I'd start a new thread as this is a rather long reply.
This is taken from the NDCS website but you can adapt it for your daughter. The address is here, sorry cant do links yet: http://www.ndcs.org.uk/information/education/specialeducational_needs_guides/a_guideto.html
For your parental input you can describe what your daughter does at the moment:
Receptive skills (how your child receives and understands language). Explain how your child understand language, what helps her to understand, how you can tell whether shes understood, how well she makes eye contact
Expressive language. Explain how easy your child finds it to communivcate with you, other children, grandparents, adults, teachers, strangers; whether you think shes using the right language level for her age.
Concentration and attention: how long can she concentrate on an activity (e.g. on a new one, on something routine); if there are times when she becomes frustrated and what causes this.
Self-help: what can she do for herself; what help she needs (e.g. for combing hair, brushing teeth, getting dressed, making a sandwich)
- fine motor skills: how good she is at holding and using a scissor, pencil etc
- gross motor skills: ease or difficulty in climbing stairs, being on a bike etc
- do you feel her skills are average, above average, below average for her age
- whether any activities cause concern for you or frustrates your child
Responsibility: can she take responsibility for herself; does she treat her and others things with respect
Social skills: does she play alone, alongside other children, with them; relates better to children or adults; is aware of other peoples feelings
Confidence and self-esteem: behaves appropriately; is she as mature as other children; is she confident and comfortable with herself
As you can see, this is a description of what your daughter can do now. From these, the LEA can form a better idea of how shes like on a daily basis, rather than in the strict compartments assessed by health professionals. You can then say what you think her educational needs would be. E.g. to access the curriculum her language would need to be at a level similar to that of her same-age peers. If its not there yet, she may need help from a speech & language therapist. Also, to participate fully in class her speech would need to be understandable to other children, not just adults or with effort. Therefore she may need extra help with her speech from a speech & language therapists. Some of the activities of the SALT can be implemented in 1-to-1 time by a learning support assistant. If she needs extra help with dressing and undressing for PE, again support from an LSA.
I hadn't heard of Sotos syndrome until now, so sorry if I picked the wrong example with language and speech delay, just to give you an idea (and also because that's the bit I know about from my son who is profoundly deaf).
Thanks for replying so thoroughly. Just don't want to mess up this one opportunity to get her the help that she will need during her educational years.
Her biggest delay is speech and language. She does have a SALT but I feel that their input at the moment is rather minimal. She is very sociable and outgoing but does interact more with adults than children her own age. She understands more than she can communicate back.
Has been referred for occupational therapy but all the "tests" they gave her she "passed" as age relevant. They just want to re-assess her in 6 months time.
She does have difficulty with gross motor skills but they have given us some techniques to try at home to try and help her in this area.
She also has some difficulty with her fine motor skills but these are slowly improving. They gave us some techniques to try regarding scissor cutting, etc. Has decided she is definitely left handed - up to now had literality and couldn't decide but her pen control in her left hand is much better than her right.
I am going to print out all what you have written above and describe each part as what she is now (although she is continually developing and progressing).
While you can make changes to the Statement, I think it's a good idea to try and get it right first time. It's such a long-winded process, that any change you might want to make in the future will take months and months to get through to the Statement. Also, I think it's a good idea to request slightly more than you think your daughter needs, not only to have some negotiating ground, but also because it's easier/more common for services to be cut back rather than added to. Finally, another reason to get it right first time is that it would be awful to go through this again every year (or half-yearly until your DD turns 5, i think?). Good luck. This whole Statementing thing will be over eventually and you'll feel like a free woman again. I know I did once we got it through (and after another 6 months wait for a SEN Tribunal hearing).
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