If the decision is made to carry out an assessment, an SEN Education Officer will take you through the rest of the process. If the decision is not to carry out an assessment, you and the school will be given the reasons in writing including your rights of appeal and the time limits for appealing. The routes of appeal are:
When disagreements arise between parents, carers or families and local authorities or schools about an aspect of a child or young person’s education they can be difficult to resolve.
Local authorities are required to provide parents, carers and families with an independent way of addressing any such disagreement. Mediation is a positive way of resolving conflict and can help to avoid the traditional adversarial approach to disagreement resolution without affecting other rights of appeal. It can work within or alongside the time frame for the SEND first-tier tribunal. You should first speak to your SEN Officer to see if the disagreement can be resolved locally. If we cannot come to an agreement, there are other options open to you.
Disagreement Resolution helps resolve disputes between parents and the Local Authority about the education of children and young people with special educational needs.
Mediation is a way of helping families where relationships have broken down to reach agreement about the future. It can be an alternative to tribunal appeals or work alongside them. Mediation provides a safe, neutral place where parties can talk through difficult and sometimes distressing issues with the support of a skilled professional family mediator who will not take sides or make judgements. It aims to improve communication, reduce stress and enable families to move forward into the future.
The Tribunal hears appeal against decisions made by Local Authorities in relation to children and young people’s EHC Needs Assessments and EHC Plans.
Where parents disagree with the decisions of the Local Authority (LA), they have the right to appeal to the SEN and Disability Tribunal, which is an independent body.
Parents can appeal in the following circumstances:
The LA will keep parents informed about their right of appeal during the assessment process.
The Government are extending the powers of the First-tier Tribunal (SEND), sometimes referred to as the ‘SEND Tribunal’, to make non-binding recommendations about the health and social care aspects of Education, Health and Care (EHC) Plans as part of a two-year trial. The trial will apply to decisions made or EHC Plans issued/amended from 3 April 2018.
To date, you have only been able to appeal the educational aspects of EHC plans. The trial gives you new rights to request recommendations about the health and social care needs and provision specified in EHC Plans, in addition to the educational aspects, when making a SEND appeal. This gives you the opportunity to raise all your concerns about an EHC plan in one place.
It is only possible for the Tribunal to consider the health and/or social care aspects of the EHC plan where you are already making an appeal in relation to the education aspects of the EHC plan and the education aspect must remain live throughout the appeal.
For more information, please visit the SENDIASS Single Route of Redress webpage