Making sure my son gets his educational needs met

Making sure my son gets his educational needs met

My son had always struggled in school. He was supported with a SEND plan and had input from a specialist teacher during Year 3. However, no progress was made and his SENCO teacher applied for an EHC needs assessment.

Starting the process

An assessment was undertaken by the local authority Educational Psychologist who agreed that our son indeed needed an EHCP.

Whilst I waited for the assessment, I began to explore other educational options for him. We tried tutoring and looking at different schools. Eventually someone recommended going to a small independent school in Surrey for boys with specific learning and language difficulties and associated conditions. I attended their open day and during a short talk from the speech and language therapist I felt as if she was talking about my son. I then knew that this was the school my son needed.

I received the draft EHCP and, in short, it was very poor. It certainly did not meet the educational and developmental needs of my son. On top of that, my questions and requests for meetings were ignored.

Taking advice

I contacted Boyes Turner, the specialist educational solicitors, for some general advice. It is fair to say that I am glad I did, because the work involved in getting my son the right EHCP and placement was not a job I could have done alone.  The process involves law, procedures, deadlines, assessments and recommendations from an educational psychologist, speech and language therapist, occupational therapist, phone calls and emails to the local authority and so on.

Avoiding court

In the end, with overwhelming evidence, it was obvious that my son’s needs would only be met within a specialist educational environment and before we had to go to court, the local authority agreed.

I am frustrated that it took such a lot of time and energy to amend work that should be done by the local authority however I am obviously over the moon that my son is getting the opportunity to attend a school that meets his needs. In any case, I could not have done this without the help of our solicitor at Boyes Turner, who has been nothing but excellent.

I am so happy at the outcome, I don't think we would have had such a comprehensive service from any other law firm, and you took the worry away...I do not regret a single second of the whole process, apart from the bit before you got involved. 

James' mother, Boyes Turner client

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