Any top tips on managing these from teachers with experience/ SENCO's? Does the child need to have made no progress? Do you need to evidence several cycles of interventions? How long do you need to be gathering evidence for a strong case? Thanks- I am brand new so any pointers/ sources of info- websites etc gratefully received
Well, I'm secondary so you'll have to take what makes sense for you. Most children already have an EHCP in place when they get to us and it's unusual for us to start from scratch. Happens occasionally though.
Progress - we base our Y7 support on previous primary support or Ed. Psyche. recommendations. For most children with some tweaking/experimenting this means progress continues at an appropriate rate. However, if this doesn't work for the child, or us, and they need more we can, and do, use progress (or lack of progress) as evidence for requesting more money to offer additional support. Also, sometimes at secondary progress is harder to map accross different subjects with different teachers. So, for example a student might make huge progress in History but very little in English. It can be difficult in cases like that to explain how this can happen - it can also be difficult to justify to the LA why that child should be entitled to support in both lessons still.
Each child on our LS register has an electronic file where we store every single piece of information about interventions we do, including pupil feedback afterwards. So we file what for, what done, who with, problems arising or progress achieved, report from adult who ran intervention and their suggestions for next steps. We also track their reading, spelling and comprehension ages at least termly. If they have numeracy/communication/language/speech issues etc. We file the appropriate test results for that too. We file reports from specialists, emails from home (most parents email rather than call) but we also log phone calls including what was discussed and why. The more evidence you have, from the more people you can, the stronger your case will be.
As for time scale, I think different LAs have different criteria. Our's (I believe!) has a notional two term expectation before they will consider an EP visit etc. for new students (Y7 or otherwise) but they have come before then in emergencies (tend to be out of school but real life/death or criminal behaviour worries). In our LA EPs advise whether they feel an EHCP assessment is appropriate - and I (or the pastoral lead) would start an early help form from that. I've never had an EP disagree with me that an EHCP is required. So, we think our system must be working. I can also ask for an EP to visit but make it clear that it's for advice without starting the EHCP process. They will come - but I have to wait longer.
I hope something there is helpful - if nothing else remember to record everything and file it really well!
Thank you fourcorneredcircle. Great advice
There are certain criteria they have to meet. I think the child has to be at least 2 years behind and receiving x amount of money per year in support/equipment. I can't remember how much the money is but it's a substantial amount, the equivalent to the wage of a 1:1 support.
I'm a parent of a child with an ehcp, not a teacher, but wanted to come on to say there isn't a set criteria as such. The thing about being two years behind / having had a certain amount of money spent is a myth. The key to any child getting an ehcp is solid evidence and reports saying they need help (academic, emotional and medically if necessary) over and above that which can be offered without an ehcp.
My son is nearly 5 and has an ehcp. He has asd and dyspraxia. He is not 2 years behind, in some areas he is actually ahead of his peers (maths). But he has sensory problems which mean he would struggle without support.
The ipsea website has lots of information on ehcps which may be useful. I applied for the one for ds on my own as at the time he hadn't even stated nursery or school but I wanted one in place for when he did. His ehcp gives him full time, all day support including breaks and lunchtimes.
Concur entirely with Fairylea. I'm a parent and I did a successful parental application for a Special Educational Needs Assessment direct to the LEA. My child (she has Cerebral palsy) got a Statement of Educational Needs at 2.5 years old. So no 2 years evidence was gathered, and no other additional support has to been seen to be failing before she got her Statement.
She is now 5.5 years old and has been transferred onto an EHCP with a full-time (inc breaks and lunch) 1:1 TA in mainstream school, ever since her nursery place started there when she was just over 3 years old. Her recent assessment was 'working within' for every assessment criteria, except writing which was 'working towards', so she's keeping up with her peers academically.
She needs the 1:1 TA to support her in accessing her environment, and moving around school, assistance with personal needs, assistance with changing for PE etc.
On the application, I had to justify why I though my child would need additional support beyond what her peers required, then she got assessed by an Ed Psy within 8 weeks. Statement was finalised within 6 months of the application. I think all LEAs have to comply with the SEN Code of Practise, so there shouldn't be differences between them in their assessment criteria.
The IPSEA website is well respected. I've drilled down to this page for you, but the rest of the website is well worth a look too. www.ipsea.org.uk/what-you-need-to-know/ehc-needs-assessments/asking-for-an-ehc-needs-assessment
I also mentioned the SEN Code of Practise. I know our SENCO has a copy of this too. I quoted the SEN COP in my justification for assessment. www.gov.uk/government/publications/send-code-of-practice-0-to-25
Last link, I promise! This is an IPSEA document that explains the law requirements versus the LA policy when deciding if a SEN Needs Assessment should take place. If taken to tribunal (i.e. appeal), the law takes precedence over LA Policy. www.ipsea.org.uk/file-manager/SENlaw/common-misconception-test-for-triggering-ehc-needs-assessment.pdf
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