May 26, 2015
The Education, Health and Care (EHC) plan has been introduced as a replacement for the statement of Special Educational Needs (SEN) and is meant to identify any additional requirements that a child with special educational needs might have. The replacement is gradual, and this means that some parents may still have or need to apply to be statemented while other parents need to apply for an EHC plan.
Tayntons Solicitors can help identify which of these is relevant to you and your child, and we can also help to submit the application, gather the evidence requested from you, and even appeal a decision, whether you believe that the EHC plan is not adequate or your Local Authority has rejected your application.
Education, Health And Care Plans
An EHC plan is a very important document, and without one it is unlikely that your son or daughter will be able to receive the full level of care and the right level of educational support that they need, so using specialist solicitors to help with the application and decision making process can give you the peace of mind that you have the greatest chance of having an EHC Plan with the appropriate level of support that your son or daughter requires.
The Decision Making Process
Following an initial assessment, the LEA will determine whether to issue a plan or not. Under the new system, the LEA has six weeks to decide whether to conduct its initial assessment and there could be a wait of a further 16 weeks before you hear the decision. Even once this period has concluded, the wait isn’t over.
You will be consulted, and if you name a specific mainstream school, they too will be involved in the process. You may have to wait 20 weeks before receiving the plan, so it is important to act quickly in order to ensure that your child can start receiving the support and help that they need as soon as possible.
Reviews And Updates
Both Statements of Special Educational Needs and EHC plans have an requirement to be reviewed on an annual basis. During the review, the LA will determine whether your son or daughter should continue to receive the same level of support, whether they need more support or whether the level of support provided can be reduced. If your child is moving from one school to another, for example from primary school to secondary school, it is also important to check that the EHC plan is still relevant and will be effective for your child’s new requirements.
LAs will ask for your input, when deciding whether to complete an initial assessment, during the initial assessment, and even when a draft of the plan is ready. This involvement does enable you to make sure that your child’s needs are met, but it can also be confusing.
Tayntons Solicitors can help ensure that your child receives the support that they require by completing your application or appeal, and helping you provide the evidence that the LA requests.