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Here are some suggested organisations that offer expert advice on special needs.

SN children

Ok, HELP!!!!

54 replies

emmalou78 · 20/07/2006 12:42

The LEA are obviously feeling super speedy, I got the proposed statement this AM.

And the goals they want the provision [preschool] to meet are fanatastic, so long as he's in the right setting, and I know in my heart that he's not. They're proposing a TA for 10 hours a week, thats brilliant now - he's in preschool 12.5 hours a week, but what about january? or do I have ot start the whole frigging process again, or call for an emergency review, because 10 hours when he's fulltime is not going to be enough in mainstream.....

But thres section 4 and I can choose a school. Problem is tomoorows end of term, and i don't know if I can getto look round, I've seen the website nad frankly base don that I'm happy.. should I name it?

because at the end of the day 10 hours additional support in a small SEN school [2-19 year olds, maximum 165 pupils thats what an average of 10 per year group?]would be brilliant.

I suddenly don't know what to do, they have at least agrred he needs support eh! but seeing it in black and white, has hit home quite hard especially when last week ds1 had his report and he couldn't be any brighter if he was nuclear.

I know you can't tell me what I should do, but faced with teh choiuce, what would you do.


sorry about the spelling.

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jenk1 · 20/07/2006 12:50

emmalou, i dont know what to suggest because we havent got as far as statementing yet, but im bumnping this for you until somone comes along who knows more.

I do agree with you that 10 hours in full time isnt going to be enough, so you would need to have that sorted but someone will be around shortly.

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AttilaTheMeerkat · 20/07/2006 12:59

The decision is ultimately yours but I would on balance accept this proposed statement. My son has had 10 hours per week support and it has done him the world of good (infact the school were able to give him a few more hours on top). I do appreciate though that all childrens' needs are different.

Some LEA's use a banding system to work out how many hours a child will receive in terms of extra support. It may be that you will not get any more than the 10 hours which has been allocated.

The Statement is both legally binding and ongoing. The statement runs for one year from the time it commences with an annual review during that time. It is only at the annual review that any changes to hours etc should be discussed with you. Whilst he is in infants school the number of hours shoudl not change; it is only when the Statement is rewritten (when he transfers to Juniors) that they'll look at it at some length and thus may reduce his hours of support.

Now you have the statement you will not have to reapply for it in January when your son starts full time.

Am glad the LEA have accepted he needs extra help.

If you're happy with the school certainly name it in Part 4. Do not delay unduly in sending it back to the LEA; it will delay the start date of the Statement if you do.

Another option for you is to call IPSEA on their freephone helpline number, their web address is www.ipsea.org.uk.

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macwoozy · 20/07/2006 13:04

No advice but congratulaions on getting that statement for your ds.

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apronstrings · 20/07/2006 13:06

did you hope he would stay in mainstream?
Iwould think unless his problems are so severe he has to go to a special scool seeing how he manages in mainstream first would be a good option. (I live in the states) Here there is a policy of what they call the least restirictive environment - ie they startr maninstream and add help/ take the child out increasingly as the need suggests.

My dd is 10 now so my sit. is a little different, but I understand your dilema - this year we wnet to look at a special class for her - it was in a different mainstream school that had a unit for children with her type of problem. There were 6 children in a class with a teacher and full time assistant- we thought it was going to be a no-brainer, and had discussions about how hard it was to get on the program etc. However after we went to see it we knew it wouldn't be right for dd and stayed where we were.

Work out what time frame things need to be sorted within before you makes any decisions. I think the statementing process is a nightmare - theres all the emotional stuff as well as trying to do the best for your lo.
Go and look at the alternatives and I hope you instinctively know what to do. Call the lea about what would happen in Jan -then you know what your working with. Good luck

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onlyjoking9329 · 20/07/2006 13:26

if the special needs school is anything like the one my 2 girls go to they tend to have much smaller classes for the younger kids, so like in the first class there are six kids and 3 staff, in the seniors there are 10 kids and three staff, the class sizes are brill in SN but not always so good in mainstream, DS is in mainstream 18 in his class but his support hours have gone down over the years from having 20 hours to just seven, i think one of the main differences for me as a parent is when my girls go off to school on thier bus i don't worry about them at all,and whatsmore i don't even have to fight to get their needs met.
when my son goes to his school i do worry, i worry about him getting bullied, i worry about lots of things, and i always know i will have to battle to get him the best deal, thats how i see it anyway.
jo

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emmalou78 · 20/07/2006 13:43

Apronstrings, I really just want whats best for him... he's in a mainstream preschhol, a dfrankly they are really failing him, I am scared ot death of makign the wrong decision now, I know he's goign to have to move to SEN unit/school at some point, the Ed psych thinks around KS2 [when he'll be about 7]everyone says he'll benefit from mainstream I just can't see how he'll cope, but transition to anywhre new is goign to be hard..

The teaher he'll have if he goes m/s in january is my older sons teacher, i'll ask her if she thinks he'd manage with the 10 hours TA till the review, she's familair with him, and she'll be at his next IEP review in sept as wel, and we're already plotting for integration,

maybe I should stop worrying and accept that we've got this far without any hiccups, and he is brilliant when he gets the right support, and the school are very sympathetic and fantastic with ASD pupils.


At the end of the day it will be reviewed 6 months after its final, so if its all gone tits up he'll be ina decent setting with a SENCo who actually knows what they're doing [the SENCO at preschool tries to bribe and reason with elijah to make him behave] and if more support or a change of setting is required we can press for it then.

if of course dp agrees!

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apronstrings · 20/07/2006 13:53

one thing we have found which your last post made me think was that one thing we find is part of the minefield of mainstream is that from year to year we are really at the mercy of the class teacher she gets - some have been fantastic and there have been other years(like this one ) when we felt the teacher was completely out of her depth.

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FioFio · 20/07/2006 14:01

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Jimjams2 · 20/07/2006 14:11

emmalou- we were given 15 hours a week at preschool (by mistake they meant to give us 12 ) When ds1 went to mainstream school he was given 1.0.

Mainstream for us was a disaster and the difference since moving to special school on the whole family has been immense. Feel free to CAT me if you want to know more- I still feel a bit funny writing personal stuff on here at the moment, but am more than happy to share with you via email. Basically onlyjoking has summed up our experiences absolutely. Mainstream school was hardwork on the whole family, now I wave ds1 off in the morning and don't worry about him at all during the day.

I wouldn't choose a school on the basis of a website. We have 2 SLD/PMLD schools in our city- on paper both looked excellent for our son, after visiting we knew that one would be totally unsuitable- the one he attends is absolutely ideal.

I don't think you can just name a special school anyway- it will go to panel- probably in around Oct/Nov for a January start and you can ask to be considered for it.

I wouldn't sign anything yet, I would ask more about provision in school, and make sure that the statement covers what is needed there.

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Jimjams2 · 20/07/2006 14:12

By 1.0 I mean he was given full time 1:1 support. Now it isn;t specified but he's in a class of 7 with 3 adults and is able to have 1:1 in the activities he needs 1:1.

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emmalou78 · 20/07/2006 14:24

He's Autistic, his physical, emotional, listening/understanding skills are currently measured at around the 24 months level, his communication is pitched at approximatletley 18 months.

He is getting by at preschool Ok. but right now the only intervention hes getting regularly is from the sspcsn teacher who goes in weekly to work with him, I got funding from a charity suuporting hte families of employees from DP's work whihc is meant to pay for 1:1 till his statement comes through, As chair of preschool I can say it pays teh wages of his allocated 1:1 key worker, but frankly there ain't been a lot of 1:1 work this half term... I'd say somehting but we break up tomorrow and i've had my wrist slapped for talking to a visiting psych about one of teh children she was assessing, it genuinly never occured to me that it would be seen as anything other then helpful it has been pointed out to me that the professional in question felt it inappropriate for another parent to be discussing soemone elses child [all I did was mention in passing that the kid used to sing t-rex].

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Jimjams2 · 20/07/2006 14:26

I;d be wary about putting a child with a comunication level of 18 months into a ms school (having done it myself!) What method of communication does he use. DS1 uses PECS but no-one in his mainstream school was PECS trained.

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emmalou78 · 20/07/2006 14:47

He all of a sudden in march started to sign [makaton] and he's marching on with that like a trouper, gets a bit cocky with it IMO! for example

"elijah sitting for tea?"

signs "no" "play train"

We've been using very simplified PECS with him under the SALTs guidance, though its modified, becuase if you attempt the 3 person model with him it all ends up being thrown in your face, literally.
He can,so long as he has access to his cards as for drinks, and snacks, and usuing a basic schedule for daytrips works well. I know his teacher if he goes MS is makaton trained and I kow they have an ASD girl there using PECS so they are familiar with it. The clinical psych who's teh only realistic thinker of all his specialists [in my eyes!] said so long as they don't assume he's as adept or able as teh ASD children already there things should be fine.

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emmalou78 · 20/07/2006 14:52

what I should mention is that the SEN school in question is the only one in a 15/20 mile radius, and as such the only one we can actually get to if and when we need to be there!

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Jimjams2 · 20/07/2006 15:00

You want things to be more than "fine" though really. I think you need to go and look at the schools in question. Once you've seen everything it makes it far easier to decide.

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emmalou78 · 20/07/2006 15:38

just hada quick word with the SENCO at the primary school, she said exactly what I wanted ot hear... tick NO on the form and say you want MORE support.She's also told me she's looking into going ona full makaton signing training course,but IS trained in using symbols [presumably makaton or PECS - must clarify on that!, but we use the makaton lexicons at home so he is very familiar with those] She's already planning for schedules and integration, but agrees
that he'll need more support then thye have offered, and did say we were lucky to get even that much without a fight!

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coppertop · 20/07/2006 15:52

I don't have experience of statementing but 10hrs doesn't sound much for a child with Elijah's needs tbh. 2 hours a day in a full school day just wouldn't be enough IMHO and I'm glad that you've got a SENCO who agrees.

The thing to be wary of is when a school says tat they have experience of ASD because they've had one other autistic child. There's a danger that they will fall into the trap of presuming that every child with ASD has the same needs. I worry about whether ds1's school, for example, might think that ds2 will be exactly like his brother - but that's a whole new thread.

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Socci · 20/07/2006 18:14

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emmalou78 · 20/07/2006 19:07

Oh the
I do not agree with the proposed statement because... box is gettign ticked.

Give me copies of reportsn ad I will back up every reason with a highlihgted quote from one of the professionals.

I love you lot by the way.

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cat64 · 20/07/2006 19:23

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FioFio · 20/07/2006 19:28

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onlyjoking9329 · 20/07/2006 21:19

emmalou78, if he does go to special needs school then he will get free transport anyway so don't worry about that aspect, my girls are at SN school and they used to do one afternoon per week at mainstream they took a worker from their school with them, SN schools seem happy to support & fund inclusion, mainstream is different thou, DS will be moving to SN school for comp years but i know the mainstream school wouldn't want to fund vists on a weekly basis to the SN school, of course that is only from my experience others may say different.
IMHO SN school like our kids for being special, MS school often panic when our kids show their special side

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onlyjoking9329 · 20/07/2006 21:20

big wave to Jimjams [smile}

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cat64 · 21/07/2006 00:21

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maddiemostmerry · 21/07/2006 11:23

emmalou, I think in your psoition if at all possible I would ask to see unit and special provision.

Inclusion is such an in thing with the LEA's that they seem to fail to see individual children. IMHO,it is so much easier for children to gain communicative confidence in a sn setting than in mainstream.

Your son is at a similar level to where my 7 year old was at preschool, he just could not have thrived in mainstream.

Hope you get the right support.

By the way , I would ring caseworker & say that this level of funding is only for preschool and you will be expecting his needs to be fully met upon entering reception with either a much higher level of support or more specialist placement.

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