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Can I ask (demand) school to help pre-diagnosis? (very long, sorry)

(20 Posts)
imogengladheart Sat 24-Sep-11 14:19:12

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imogengladheart Sat 24-Sep-11 14:28:59

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LIZS Sat 24-Sep-11 14:35:55

The two things can be entirely separate for now. Gp can certainly refer you to a paed if he feels it is necessary - you may well be describing APD, dyspraxia even asd-related issues but only a full assessment will determine if so - and school can put him on School action with specific targets and support via an IEP to help him cope better and them cooperate. Ultimately the results of one may inform the other, at which point he may become SA+ ,but in the meantime arrange a meeting with the school so they understand your desire to be proactive in seekign assistance for your ds.

squidworth Sat 24-Sep-11 16:46:54

I would first write down a list of your DS main problems in a clear bullet point form ESP those which you would expect a child of your sons age to be able to do. I would then send an email including your list to the head for a meeting with senco present. Asking for a way forward while you await medical checks to help DS in a way that does not effect his self esteem or his already fragile relationship with peers. End with you are looking forward with working with them to help your son in his education. This will give you a paper trail? Can you afford any private reports as this may help. Stay strong and maybe write to previous teacher for a supporting letter of what helps your son and what does not.

imogengladheart Sat 24-Sep-11 16:54:15

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tabulahrasa Sat 24-Sep-11 17:05:11

Are you in Scotland?

imogengladheart Sat 24-Sep-11 17:11:48

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tabulahrasa Sat 24-Sep-11 17:41:16

Well then there's no school action or senco. The good news is that the was additional support for learning act works, you definitely don't need a diagnosis to access support. Even if his schooling issues are temporary and caused by his experiences at school they can still be classed as an additional support need. The bad news is that your school sound pretty dire.

As his class teacher is being unhelpful, you need to go to the management team and whoever is in charge for support for learning. An IEP can be put in place even for temporary ASNs.

imogengladheart Sat 24-Sep-11 17:58:53

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tabulahrasa Sat 24-Sep-11 18:33:04

Yep it's the additional support for learning act that covers it - enquire do a fairly thorough parent's guide - but I'm on my phone so I can't do a link, if you google you should find it though.

IEP is individual education plan. ASN is additional support needs. Sorry I shouldn't have started bandying around acronyms, lol, you kind of get used to them. ASN is the equivalent of SEN as SEN isn't used in Scotland.

Any medical assesment should not be in anyway linked to provision of support in school, it should be entirely based on what he needs...of course it doesn't always work like that. hmm

The school should be assessing him seperately for additional support needs, if after you've spoken to the deputy or head and the support for learning teacher, they're still not assessing - you can request assessment from the local education authority directly.

imogengladheart Sun 25-Sep-11 19:22:55

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imogengladheart Sun 25-Sep-11 21:09:34

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tabulahrasa Mon 26-Sep-11 00:52:06

Right - there's no statementing, there's a co-ordinated support plan (CSP) which does a similar thing, but there needs to be fairly complex needs and other agency involvement (social work, health, etc.). Basically that's the most anyone can get and they don't do it easily...

It's a bit like a sliding scale, you start off with Support for Learning (SfL), which is basically extra help for mostly academic issues (though they do do things like social skills classes as well) that is sorted in school and you are just informed about it. The next stage up is an IEP which is more formal, should involve a parent in the planning process and would have specific goals and targets from any relevant area (academic, social and emotional, behaviour, etc.) Then some schools have things like school support plans and multi agency support plans (SSPs and MASPs) which are effectively IEPs with bells and whistles on them, lol.

Nothing in any nicely acronymed support is a legal entitlement until it's in a CSP, you as a parent have the right to ask for assessment for ASNs or a CSP at any time. (although of course they can also turn down that request)

The first step really is to get in touch saying that you want to speak to the head and the SfL teacher/department about meeting his needs.

If that gets you nowhere you then send in a letter saying that he is being assessed for developmental disorders, he has CAMHS involvement and will soon be seeing/has seen the paediatrician, you then outline some of the issues you think he's having at school (that's where you put the things like being unable to follow instructions, get changed for gym and how it's affecting him) and you'd like him assessed for additional support needs as it is affecting his education (give a couple of examples if you can) and that you believe he needs support to access the curriculum. Basically you want an educational psychologist to come out - it's nothing to do with diagnosing, they just assess what support is needed in school.

If that doesn't get them moving - you then send a similar letter to someone at the education department (I don't know who that would be without knowing where you are and looking it up, but it should be on a council website) and that'll get them moving because someone form the LEA gets involved and starts asking why they were bothered with this when it should have been resolved before it ever got to that (you can further down the line use a CSP request to similar effect, lol)

And that's probably all about as clear as mud, lol, but ask away - if I know it, I'll answer.

Have a mooch about on enquire and LTS

As to the keeping him off, I'm afraid, absent is absent really - it might be worth giving him the odd day off, but it's going to count the same as any other absence. Seeing the paed really won't make any difference to what the school are doing, not by itself - so I'd be loathe to keep him off for that long.

The other thing is that they don't react well usually to you suggesting what they do (as in suggesting what support you think he needs) even if you're right, so the idea is that you go in and tell them what you think the problem is and they suggest support...if they don't, then that's when you start telling them what to do, but it usually works better to let them think they're deciding things. It's hard when it's the wrong way round - it should work that the school are having difficulty so they want to support him, but some schools are just bad at that and it ends up being parents having to go, support my child...which of course is not what parents should have to do sad

imogengladheart Mon 26-Sep-11 09:56:44

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tabulahrasa Mon 26-Sep-11 13:24:21

go for it

a paper trail is always worth having (keep a dated copy though for yourself as well) but they will still want to meet with you... if you get upset at meetings (which honestly is sooo normal) remember you can take someone with you - there are professional advocates from various organisations, but also some councils employ them or you can take a friend or relative if you've got someone a bit more stoic for moral support.

imogengladheart Mon 26-Sep-11 19:48:25

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tabulahrasa Tue 27-Sep-11 09:09:43

I'm not so good on the diagnosis side - I've only done that as a parent.

Some GPs are better than others though, but if she can only rerefer you to CAMHS, then I'd take it...

Assessment wouldn't usually be done at school, so I suspect it's been something else - not a full on assessment for a developmental disorder.

I know a few people with uncooperative schools (well it's a few people, one school, lol) and it makes everything about diagnosis so much harder than it needs to be. What you want though is to get him seen, in the initial referral the school carries quite a bit of weight - but once he's being assessed, they'll be able to make their own judgement.

Remember as well, that frustrating as it was at the doctor's, it has nothing whatsoever to do with school support, it shouldn't matter at all why he needs support at school, just that he does.

imogengladheart Tue 27-Sep-11 09:39:10

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tabulahrasa Tue 27-Sep-11 10:10:33

I haven't got a clue grin

I think you report it or something? Or you could start a new conversation with a link to this one?

You'll get better advice about diagnosis anyway over there definitely - and there are a few other Scottish people, and of course it's much busier.

It's pretty horrible to be there going, I think he needs help and no-one's giving it sad it's pretty much the worst place to be in...

imogengladheart Tue 27-Sep-11 17:31:21

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