Transport issues for son with SEN- help!
owlbethere · 08/10/2021 17:44
I’ll try to keep this short and I’m just wondering if anyone can help me.
My son is 16 recently started an independent living skills course at my local FE college. He has special needs, including specific language impairment, autism, severe dyslexia and some mild physical issues with tight muscles.
He doesn’t have a statement of SEN, but has had an IEP all through school. We are in Wales.
The college is 10 miles from our house and requires 2 buses there and back which he’s just not able to manage safely on his own.
The LEA have refused to fund a taxi as he isn’t statemented. They haven’t even given me any recourse to appeal. The transport coordinator at the college has left her post with no new person for a couple of weeks. The LEA say the college have a budget to fund a taxi, the college say they do not.
Currently I’m driving him. But I can’t do this long term.
Anyone able to help?
Kite22 · 08/10/2021 23:29
I don't know the answer to your question now, but is there a reason you haven't applied for a Statement before now?
I am in England and I know England and Wales have different Education systems, but our EHCPs (Education, Health Care Plans replaced Statements in England in 2014) take you up to 25.
Contact have a strong campaign team with advice and support around transport - it might be worth getting in touch with them for advice.
owlbethere · 09/10/2021 01:20
I was told as he was getting lots of support in class at school that a statement was pointless as it wouldn’t change the provision he was being given there. Clearly bad advice on the part of the ed psych. The new IDP system doesn’t come into effect until January so I can’t apply for one in the mean time.
Thanks for that, I will look them up.
Toomanyminifigs · 17/10/2021 13:37
Contact SENTAS. They specialise in SEN transport issues. I've used them and they were so helpful. I am in England but fingers crossed they cover Wales:
Tarano17 · 23/10/2021 14:48
It doesn’t matter if he is getting lots of support with an IEP as that is just a cop out that LA’s use to avoid committing funds to those with SEN. Also an EHCP will support your son with education and transport provision to get to and from his education placement up until he is 25. Make the application fast and don’t be fooled by LA’s saying he doesn’t need one. He does and you will most likely have to fight very hard to get it. If you are determined to get his needs met you can do it but you will need independent assessments of his needs in order to support your case.
Imitatingdory · 23/10/2021 15:32
I think SENTAS can only help in England, but SNAPCymru may be able to help.
Tarano17 EHCPs don't exist in Wales. It is Statements of SEN, which along with IEPs, are currently being phased out, both are being replaced with IDPs.
Tarano17 · 23/10/2021 15:47
Every single child whether they have Sen or not has an individual education plan so having an IEP is not going to help with transport costs. It doesn’t matter if the SEN statement of needs is being phased out as long as you can still apply for one now at this minute. Once a child has a statement or EHCP the LA are obliged by law to continue to meet the young persons needs. With an EHCP this is 25 whereas a statement was 18 I think. I live in England and Statements were changed to EHCP Education and health care plans a few years back. If you are unsure what to do or fear getting talked out if it bybtge school or LA then you could get free independent legal education advice from IPSEA. Call them. You have nothing to lose but your child has the chance to benefit loads from it.
Tarano17 · 23/10/2021 15:49
IPSEA telephone number is 0300225899
Tarano17 · 23/10/2021 15:50
Sorry. IPSEA number is 03002225899 and the landline number is 01799 582030
Imitatingdory · 23/10/2021 17:02
Tarano17 Every single child whether they have Sen or not has an individual education plan so having an IEP is not going to help with transport costs.
That isn't correct, not all children have an IEP, they are only for DC with SEN. And, in Wales, IEPs are being phased out and replaced by IDPs. I don't think those over CSA can apply for a statement of SEN at the moment. However, even if they can it won't be any quicker than waiting for 1st January for an IDP because of the shorter timescales for finalising IDPs compared to statements of SEN - 12 weeks compared to 26.
IDPs differ to EHCPs, one major difference is the differences in entitlement to provision up until 25. Whilst IDPs can remain in place until 25, there is "no entitlement to continuous education up to age 25", only support equitable access as far as possible to provision that is available to those without ALN.
OP is in Wales, IPSEA help with English SEND law.
Tarano17 · 23/10/2021 18:36
@Imitatingdory an IEP or IDP will NOT help get the OP transportation for her child. Only an EHCP or SEN statement of needs will do that. The LA could agree to provide transportation but without it being agreed as part of an EHCP or SEN statement they could stop it any time they want.
Imitatingdory · 23/10/2021 19:54
Tarano17 I haven't posted an IEP, IDP, statement of SEN or EHCP would, or wouldn't, help OP secure transport.
I think you are confused, an IDP is the equivalent of statement of SEN.
My first post was in reply to you stating Also an EHCP will support your son with education and transport provision to get to and from his education placement up until he is 25. I replied EHCPs don't exist in Wales, it is a statement of SEN soon to be IDP.
My second post was in reply to you a) incorrectly stating all DC had IEPs, b) directing OP to IPSEA, c) stating OP should still be able to apply for a statement of SEN, and d) discussing EHCPs applying until 25.
an IEP or IDP will NOT help get the OP transportation for her child. Only an EHCP or SEN statement of needs will do that. The LA could agree to provide transportation but without it being agreed as part of an EHCP or SEN statement they could stop it any time they want.
However, there is no requirement for a child to have an EHCP or statement of SEN/IDP in order to be entitled to home to school transport. If a child meets the criteria and the LA won't provide it or unlawfully remove it you can begin Judicial Review proceedings. See here for England, I don't have the equivalent link for Wales to hand. Although, even with an EHCP or statement of SEN/IDP post 16 transport is not guaranteed as the law is different post 16. Unless there are exceptional circumstances transport should not be in the EHCP - Staffordshire County Council v JM (SEN)  UKUT 246 (AAC).
Tarano17 · 23/10/2021 20:15
@Imitatingdory Do you work for a LA with encouraging the OP there is no need for her to apply for an EHCP for her child. Every parent is legally entitled to apply for their child to be assessed for an EHCP and appeal the LA’s decision via the tribunal process.
@owlbethere as the LA have refused your request for Transport they are right in saying you have no right to appeal it. This is what LAs do as they tell parents there is no need for them to apply for SEN statements or an EHCP for their child as this provides the parent with a legal document they can appeal and takebit to judicial review if the education provision is not provided. I strongly disagree with the claims made by @Imitatingdory and would strongly advise you to not wait a second longer in applying for your child to get an EHCP or SEN statement of needs that will ensure ALL their education needs are met as well as transport provision. There is usually a very long wait for LAs to process these EHCP/SEN statement of need applications do the sooner you apply the sooner your son’s needs will be met in full. You would be wise to get independent education advice also.
Imitatingdory · 23/10/2021 20:56
FFS Tarano17, perhaps read my posts. No, I don't work for the LA. I do, however, have 2 DC with EHCPs, have advised many on MN over the years under various NCs and IRL. Where I have discouraged the OP from applying for an EHCP? (Taking in to account I have posted EHCPs do not exist in Wales)
I have pointed out, more than once, EHCPs don't exist in Wales. OP can not apply for an EHCP when they do not exist in Wales. As OP posted she can not apply for an IDP until January. As a post 16 pupil during the ALN reforms I don't believe she is now able to apply for a statement of SEN, and even if she could it wouldn't be quicker than waiting to apply for an IDP on the 1st January as 26 weeks (the legal timescales for a statement of SEN) from now is after 12 weeks (the legal timescale for an IDP in a FEI) from the 1/1/22. I also advised her to get in touch with SNAPCymru who provide a similar service to IPSEA but for Wales.
as well as transport provision
As per the case law I posted, transport is not an educational need and should not be in EHCPs unless there are exceptional circumstances. And post 16 transport rules are not the same as the law for CSA pupils.
I provided a link to IPSEA stating an EHCP wasn't necessary to secure transport, because there is seperate statutory requirements that cover SEN and disability. If you believe an EHCP or statement of SEN/IDP is required perhaps you can provide a reputable link proving IPSEA wrong?
The processes of applying for an EHCP, IDP and statement of SEN are governed by statutory timescales, 20, 12 when in an FEI and 26 weeks respectively. These must be stuck to regardless of any "very long wait for LAs to process" them.
Imitatingdory · 23/10/2021 21:08
My first paragraph should read Where have I discouraged the OP from applying for an EHCP?
TheOriginalEmu · 27/10/2021 01:58
[quote Tarano17]@Imitatingdory an IEP or IDP will NOT help get the OP transportation for her child. Only an EHCP or SEN statement of needs will do that. The LA could agree to provide transportation but without it being agreed as part of an EHCP or SEN statement they could stop it any time they want.[/quote]
You cannot apply for a statement or EHCP in Wales at the moment. Ehcp does not exist here. Statement applications have all been suspended from august until the new IDP system is up and running in January when I will be applying. But that doesn’t help me at the moment.
Snapcymru can’t help me as they don’t have provision in my LEA.
TheOriginalEmu · 27/10/2021 02:01
Snap Cymru were of no use as they do not have provision in my LEA.
I have since managed to get a form to appeal the LEAs decision. So I hope that will be helpful. Thank you for your help. I do appreciate you taking the time.
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