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no school for my dd [angry]

(30 Posts)
MumOfThreeMonkeys Thu 24-Sep-09 09:53:33

hi, my dd aged 5.4 has moderate/severe LD and was assessed by ed physc in feb who recomended that she should be placed in a learning support unit or a special school- my husband and i both agree with this as she would just not survive in mainstream school- her developmental age is that of a 18-24 month old. in march we went and looked at 2 learning support units in our area, one we disregarded straight away as not being right for dd (gut feeling) the second one was ok but we were advised off the record by the teacher that we should go and visit the local special school and that she thought that dd would not be ready for LSU yet (we also agreed). so we went to the special school and it was great! we actually left with such an upbeat feeling that things were gonna be ok.

months past by and we recieved dd proposed statement in august (deadline was june but medical reports went missing hmm) we were happy with the statement "it is considered that katie's special education needs could be met by being taught as a member of a small class group in a special school by staff who are experienced in teaching pupils with severe developmental delay and/or severe learning difficulties and with access to the classroom assistance provided by the board to such settings in order to provide a very favourable staff/pupil ratio and the support and supervision required." we thought this is great- she will get all the help she needs in the school we want her to go to... but no there was a problem with wording on her ed physc report and the head refused to accept her- the ed physc change his report and the proposed statement was amended ans sent back to the school. this was only last tuesday on wednesday dd was dx with asd, the school still wont say if they are accepting her, the head said he would give an answer on tuesday- we heard nothing, the board called him on wednesday and were told that he was out and would not be back until monday! angry

can i just say that i live in northern ireland but im thinking these things work just the same as in the rest of the uk. my dd birthday is 2 july - cut off for a school yr is birthdays before 1 july, so basically if she had been born 5 hrs earlier she would be in year 2 now.

i contacted my local mp yesterday to see if he can get any answers- dunno wat to do next im so so angry and frustrated!

MumOfThreeMonkeys Thu 24-Sep-09 10:07:27

thinking of going to the papers- this would not happen to a nt child!

vjg13 Thu 24-Sep-09 10:50:07

Sorry, I'm a bit confused. Should your daugher already have started school this September and has already missed a few weeks because of these delays?

cory Thu 24-Sep-09 11:04:03

What kind of help would the mainstream school offer her. There is a little girl with Downs syndrome in ds's junior school, she has very limited language, but she does have 1:1 assistance. Is this what they are proposing? The LEA do have a duty to educate your dd, so they have to come up with an answer.

saintlydamemrsturnip Thu 24-Sep-09 11:17:01

It does sound a little different as here the decision wouldn't be the heads - it would have to go to a panel for places to be allocated in special schools.

I would be wary about 1:1 in mainstream. Been there, done that, have the disastrous t-shirt and ds1's education is far better in special school (which isn't to say it can't work- there are people on here for whom it works very well, but you do have to choose the ms school very well - and if you have a runner like me - it is very difficult).

Do you have a statementing officer?

cory Thu 24-Sep-09 11:24:11

Not saying mainstream would necessarily be an answer, just that it would be worth finding out what their solution would be and then take it from there. Presumably, there is some sort of authority that is responsible for ensuring that your dd gets an education at all.

vjg13 Thu 24-Sep-09 12:04:34

Like SDMT says it does sound as if the system is very different in NI as here the LEA education officer makes the decision (although it is dressed up as a panel!) and the school goes along with it.

If you feel this school would best meet you daughter's needs then grit your teeth and hold out for it. It is an appalling and frustrating situation for you and you're right children without special needs aren't treated like this.

My daughter started in mainstream, moved to a mainstream school with a unit and is now at a special school. She is now 11. IME having a 1 to 1 support worker in mainstream takes away a lot of independence away from children and I wish she had always been in a special school. sad

magso Thu 24-Sep-09 13:03:47

I am a little confused - has your dd been turned down for the special school or is it that you still do not know or are awaiting their decision?
We had a situation where ds was dx with autism after his statement was produced and a special school was asked ( by panel) to consider accepting him. It caused a hickup, (they had to bring their autism base staff to assess him) but ds got his place in the end. I was totally distraught during those limbo days (I was told incorrectly they would not accept him)so feel for you. Once the decision to accept was made it was very quick and ds missed only a little school!
I do hope you get the place you want for your child!

magso Thu 24-Sep-09 13:17:43

meant to say my son started ms school (barely meeting the milestones for a 2 year old) without support and it was disasterous! He actually went backwards in some areas, escaped, and picked up some unwanted behaviours that took years to reduce. So with the benenfit of hindsight I wish I had delayed his start until the lea had accepted he needed support (he was turned down initially)! It would have been better for him to have stayed off school. So while it is outrageous that your child has no school place yet, it may not doing your dd harm as long as she gets a suitable placement soon.

MumOfThreeMonkeys Thu 24-Sep-09 13:39:48

yes my daughter should have started school on 1st september-mainstream is not an option she is so not fit for it cant even sit in a seat for 30 seconds never mind 100 other problems. here the desion is made by the local libary board but the school can refuse, it seems that the head is just keeping us hanging on and wont give us an answer one way or the other- the weeks are just going by and my daughter is missing out on so much plus the fact that she is enjoying being at home with me and its gonna create problems when she does/if ever get placed in a school.

also if it was the other way round and she had a place and i wasnt sending her they wouldnt be long knocking my door angry

vjg13 Thu 24-Sep-09 15:22:09

Fingers crossed that you hear some good news on monday.
I think you are right getting in touch with your MP. I think you should also get some legal advice. Have you tried IPSEA or SOS:SEN, they may be able to help.

paranoid2 Thu 24-Sep-09 23:36:23

I am i NI and as far as I was aware the system works pretty much as in the rest of the UK. You specify your choice of school to the board. If they think its appropriate and in line with your childs requirements as specificed in the draft statement then your child can go there if there is a space available. I dont really think the school can turn you down unless i guess they spot something in the draft statement that would suggest to them that a child was not suitable at all but I would have thought that would have been cleared up pretty quickly. Also its the statement that I would be expecting the school to be looking at rather than the ep report as its the boards job to assess the wp report and to make a judgement on the ep report not the school.My experience has been positive apart from the length of time it took for Ds to be assessed. The whole thing after that happened well within the legal timescale and Dt2 has been in a unit attached to mainstream for almost a year and its been great for him and for Dt1 who we moved to the MS part of the school (the more difficult decision)It all sounds very frustrating and your dd should definitely be getting some form of ed at this stage

MumOfThreeMonkeys Fri 25-Sep-09 08:34:14

paranoid im really happy that yours went so smoothly, but not meaning to sound rude, i dont think that everyone in northern ireland with a special needs child has such smooth sailing when it comes to statmenting and placement. i had no bother when it came to assesment its just the placement part. i know that the board should be making the desion but at the end of the day the school is having a major input- and not just thee school- 1 man is making the desion if my child will attend or not, and even at that he wont say YES OR NO! i actually thought that it was up to the board and the schools board of goveners! how wrong was i !

seriously thinking about calling the nolan show hmm

my local libary board said yesterday that the head is very secretive hmm and that she thinks that its something to do with numbers, a child is leaving but it needs to be confirmed before there will be a place for my child. how long does that take ??????

magso Fri 25-Sep-09 09:40:18

It all sounds very stressful! Hope you get good news soon.

paranoid2 Fri 25-Sep-09 12:57:05

You are right. I know we have been lucky , in that a place was available at the right school and I didnt mean to suggest that its easy in all cases. I know its not and I really think the treatment you have received has been dreadful. The board has an obligation to find your DD a suitable school. If the school that you have stipulated in part 4 of the draft statement as being the one you think is the most suitable and the board agree, isnt able to take your DD for whatever reason (and those reasons seem very vague) then the board have a legal obligation to name a school themselves and place your DD there and provide transport until such time as a place becomes available in the preferred school. From what you have written it seems that her ststement specifically says that special school is the best way forward so it would not be acceptable for the board to place here in MS even as a temporary measure
I have to say that I didnt want my Dt2 to move from MS and go to one unit and then have to move again if there had not been a place available in the preferred school and I had opted to keep him in MS until a place became available. It didnt happen thankfully and obviously its different for you as your DD is only starting school.

Have you asked the board how they intend to provide education for your DD until such time as the preferred school make up their mind?

I will listen out for the topic on the Nolan show with interest . Cant stand the man but he does sit on issues and I would if I were you. Its terrible for you and your DD and is not acceptable . Whereabouts are you? Dont worry if you would rather not say

MumOfThreeMonkeys Fri 25-Sep-09 14:34:39

smile @ the nolan show- can't stand him either but he gets results. im in co.down so its the southern board that im dealing with. my dd would not last 10 mins in ms and that is the opinion of all health proffesionals involved. i did contact Catrina Ruane's PA (i dont agree with her most of the time but what better person than the minister of education to help me hmm- we'll see) she said that she is gonna do her bewst to get things moving- that was wednesday and i still havent heard a thing!

RustyBear Fri 25-Sep-09 14:44:33

"a child is leaving but it needs to be confirmed before there will be a place for my child. how long does that take ?????? "

In England, at least, it can be up to four weeks - that's how long you have to leave a child on the register if you haven't had official notification that they are leaving (we have had this happen in the past at the junior school I work at - the child just disappeared; in fact the family had gone abroad, as we discovered about 9 months later when the child literally just turned up on our doorstep again one morning)

MumOfThreeMonkeys Fri 25-Sep-09 15:38:31

that does not sound promising, you would think that it being a special school that only allows 8 kids per class that it could be confirmed pretty quickly if one of them was not returning.

why oh way is there red tape and a system for everything? nothing comes easy or smoothly its always a f*#king fight! angry

paranoid2 Fri 25-Sep-09 15:46:48

Im in North down so it was the South eastern board. Am sure there is good and bad in both. Good luck with the lovely Caitriona. Lets hope she is better in action than she comes across on TV/radio

Good luck. let us know how you get on

i would get on the board again and ask what they intend to do

MumOfThreeMonkeys Fri 25-Sep-09 16:00:43

just waiting for them to return my call- like thats gonna happen- more chance of hell freezing over. just keeping my finger crossed that i will hear some good news on monday. she really needs to get into school very soon.

DoNotPressTheRedButton Fri 25-Sep-09 16:05:47

Actually it might differ a bit between LEAs as pre panel the LEA sent ds3's details to different heads for feedback on whetehr they would take him.

We're not in NI, but that stage did cause headaches as his details were sent to twos chools and one Head only responded after weeks when foced to by LEA.Clearly, we then chose the toher school, and so far feel we have amde an excellent decision.

for the non retyrner it could well be that child is in a similar position and waiting for their school to be confirmed,eitehr a specialist place or up a level.

MumOfThreeMonkeys Fri 25-Sep-09 16:19:32

yeah i understand that DNPTRB, but they could at least talk to me on a human level as a mother of a special needs child that just wants her to get an education, if someone actually called me and explained the situation it would be much easier to deal with. it just being kept in the dark like everything is a big secret.

DoNotPressTheRedButton Fri 25-Sep-09 16:34:59

I know, it's shit isn't it? It does get easier once ythey're in a good setting and it becomes all worth it, though.

MumOfThreeMonkeys Sun 27-Sep-09 17:25:54

getting nervous about tommorow- please keep everything crossed for me everyone smile

MumOfThreeMonkeys Tue 29-Sep-09 13:36:20

still no news sad

this is getting beyond a joke [angry

the school is waiting on confirmation that another child is not returning.... i am so frustrated- they just seem to be fobing me off.

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