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School applying for EHCP...what can I expect?

(17 Posts)
Emcharlierush Mon 31-Dec-18 15:41:04

Hi. My DD is 8 and has spina bifida in mainstream school. She's recently had an educational psychology assessment as she is falling behind at school and seems to display learning and processing difficulties. The assessment took nearly a year to happen and was a total battle (the school did not want to take responsibility) and it was only after a Neurologist and Paediatrician wrote to them, they finally caved.

I met with the school to go through the report and the SENCO said that she is going to apply for an EHCP as some of her scores were low- to give you an idea (non verbal reasoning 4th percentile, auditory memory 4th percentile, information processing 9th percentile).

I have such little faith in so many people. It's sad to say, but I, (like most of you I'm sure) have to fight to the bitter end to get what my child deserves and is entitled to. I just don't know whether this is going to be accepted, and if so, what sort of help will be given. They have mentioned 1:1 but I don't know if 'the powers that be' will agree that her scores are worthy. To be honest, I'm told they are low scores but how low do they consider as low? I'm just preparing myself for yet another battle and probably a disappointment!! What are everyone else's experiences? Positive and Negative welcome!

Strix Mon 31-Dec-18 16:54:10

Have you had the EHC Needs Assessment? I just applied to the borough for an EHC Needs assessment for my 8 year old DS who has High Functioning ASD (Aspergers), ADHD, and undiagnosed dyspraxia. The borough decided not to assess him because his needs are being met at school. But how can they know that his needs are being met when they don't know what they are... because of course they haven't assess him!

I am worn down and bitter. So I'm afraid my advice on what you can expect can be summed up in one word: rejection.

Emcharlierush Tue 01-Jan-19 08:07:08

@Strix Oh gosh I’m sorry to hear that sad Maybe if it was the school who applied rather than you, you would get further with it? Or will you appeal?

My DD has had the Psych Ed assessment but that’s all so far. I don’t really know what would be next to be honest?

imip Tue 01-Jan-19 08:15:46

You need to apply for an EHCP needs assessment. If it is refused as with a pop, you need to take this to tribunal. At tribunal you are more than likely to be successful. LA usually concedes before tribunal. You don’t need to attend in person as refusal to assess are held ‘on paper’. The threashold for an assessment is that a child may have SEN and may need support for this SEN in school. So you can see that when challenged with tribunal, most LAs know that they will be in the wrong.

Two good charities for support are sossen and ipsea. Your sencos probably don’t understand the law in relation to send, and probably both don’t realise that you meet the threashold (based on what you’ve said here). Probably lots more advice on the general send boards about this, but read up and pursue tribunal, it really is worth it. It is a battle, but there is really no other choice but to move to tribunal and get the best provision for your dc.

Strix Tue 01-Jan-19 10:30:58

School was very un supportive. Refused to discuss the recommendations at the end of DS' CAMHS ADHD and ASD diagnosis. Would change subjects of meetings at last minute. SENCO would overrun the meeting with irrelevant stories and then suddenly remark she had to go and meeting over. If I sent SENCO an email she would reply verbally at the gate in front of all the other parents. shock. I could type so much more, but you get the idea. In Reception (three years ago) school advised me that he had not bonded with other children as he should have, had limited interests (IT/computers), he didn't speak in complete sentences (but he spoke in lengthy paragraphs at home), and he often didn't make eye contact with adults. He was inattentive, unfocused, and hyperactive. Again, the list goes on but I'll stop here. I realise now that they knew then that he was Autistic. Yet they were actively uncooperative.

So I did my homework... Thanks largely to ADHD Richmond, NAS Richmond, and IPSEA. Im through be fobbed off by school because I am bloody exhausted. I met with a solicitor last summer. She gave me some good advice and told me to apply for EHC assessment myself. So I did. It was packed with evidence that he needs support the he can't have because he doesn't have an EHCP. It clearly shows he has SEND, and that he would benefit from the provision offered in and EHCP.

So, I returned to the solicitor and instructed her to proceed to appeal without delay. I cannot afford this financially. But I am worn out and I can no longer reason with the SENCO, the (incompetent) Headteacher, the diocese, and now the LA.

In all of this what really upsets me most is the thought of what happens to autistic children whose parents aren't as feisty and outspoken as I am. Those are the kids who are really failed. sad

Emcharlierush Tue 01-Jan-19 18:50:50

You are totally right. I can absolutely understand how some people may get overwhelmed and give up the fight. I feel like it some days!! I don’t blame you in the slightest for what you are having to do @Strix.

@imip So is the needs assessment what her school is applying for?? I’m totally confused. We went through the psych Ed assessment and the SENCO said ‘what I’m going to do is apply for an EHCP’. I didn’t know there was an assessment beforehand

imip Tue 01-Jan-19 19:05:23

Yes, the needs assessment is where all professionals assess your child and recommend the support they need. It’s the first step of an ehcp. On the basis of that info, the LA will decide whether to issue a plan (and if not -usually the case- you can challenge it at tribunal. Read up on the process on special needs jungle, IPSEA or SOSSEN and become expert at it so you can control the process with the SENCO (usually they won’t know the law, only LA policy - I work in a primary school and have send kids in a different school). Once the request goes in, you should hear back in 6 weeks, make sure all deadlines are adhered to. All the info feels insurmountable when it’s ahead of you, but having gone through the process, you learn it quickly which gives you quite s lot of ‘power’ if you need to deal with the LA ... well, sometimes st leafy!

imip Tue 01-Jan-19 19:05:41

At least, that should say!

Strix Tue 01-Jan-19 19:08:45

Some good information here.

Emcharlierush Tue 01-Jan-19 20:36:39

I feel so stupid that I didn’t know any of this and now I’m totally disheartened. Thanks both for your information

Strix Tue 01-Jan-19 21:50:25

Please don't feel stupid. It's a minefield. Parents of NT children have no idea. And parents of SEND children only know these things through desperation. I have three children. The one I have mentioned here is my youngest. I had no idea what other people went through. Not a clue!

When you find out your child is disabled/SEND (autism for me was the big shock -- I expected an ADHD diagnosis but Autism was a shock) you dig in, get your head round it, and vow to do everything to help your child be the best person he can be. Along the way, you realise he (or she) has made you a better person. I look back on my days of the my older two, when they were in primary and naturally academic, and I realise what and arrogant arse I was to those parents who I now realise are SEND parents. I was such a jerk. And I had no idea!

DeepanKrispanEven Thu 03-Jan-19 23:20:27

You might find SOS SEN's booklets on EHC assessments and EHCPs helpful - If you're within reach of London, they also do some useful workshops.

I'd suggest you put your own application in unless the SENCO is going to be able to do so in the very near future. The process takes some time anyway, so it's worth starting it off without delay.

Sophisticatedsarcasm Thu 17-Jan-19 15:43:25

This is just the thread I need... my DS 10 (year 6) was diagnosed last March, at the end of July we had a meeting with his SEnco to discuss next steps going into year 6. Whilst in the meeting she was talking about a plan, I can’t be sure she said ECHP plan but DP swears blind she did. We’ve never had an extra assessment nor have we seen any paperwork. I just assumed as it was done through the school we didn’t need need to do anything as they were more than willing to help, They’ve since put more stuff in place for him, he has special ta who helps him along with another boy, he also attends a group called nurture which is a group of kids across all years that do special lessons, that happens 3 times a week. He also sees the school psychologist as he finds school very difficult. I though this was a plan but now am doubting if it’s a echp plan or wether the school have just done this stuff to make thier lives easier. His original SEnco was all set to help him transition and said she will liaise with the high school (close community) to make sure it’s a smooth transition and he gets the help he needs. She since left, and someone else has taken over 3 weeks ago, I’ve not heard anything to 8ntroduce herself and DS has only met her briefly. I’ve called her now to double check he defo has a plan because going in to high school is daunting enough without having to fight to get him the help he needs . Luckily they have a very good special education programme and he was very impressed when he went. He doesn’t need help with everything but enough that it worries him. If anyone could shed some light that would be great 😬

Emcharlierush Fri 18-Jan-19 14:05:16

Hi @Sophisticatedsarcasm It sounds like the school is keen to help (and is helping) your son, but you should absolutely have been told either this is from an EHCP or not. It’s a legal document so you should definitely have had input and have heard from the authorities who I believe also send you a letter to outline details of the application. This is what I can gather from looking into this process anyway.
You should also have been immediately introduced to the new SENCO and I would say that I’m surprised by this...but saying that...we’ve had a new headteacher who has never been involved in any of my daughters discussions!
I’m still sitting here wondering if our school senco has started the application or not. Don’t really know what to do next!!

Emcharlierush Fri 18-Jan-19 14:05:46

Sorry, that meant to say ‘whether this’!!!

Sophisticatedsarcasm Fri 18-Jan-19 22:31:14

I vaguely remember the teacher sending me something home to fill in last year but so much going on in my life I can’t remember what it was for. As he was liasing with the school, DP swears blind th3 previous senco said he had one. I heard her say plan just not sure what she said before as I was sorting out my son. I just assumed she meant ECHp plan. I’ve got a meeting with the new senco now on Monday after I sent an email to the deputy head as she is very hands on with my son. See where we go from there. Thanks anyway x

vasillisa Wed 22-May-19 14:52:31

How are you all getting on?

Just had agree to assess decision - war not over but this battle won.

At Easter I had a depressive 2 weeks where I just cried.

Back on the pony now though.

It takes some energy

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