Appealing the Local Authority’s decision
Appeals to the First Tier Tribunal
If you need assistance with appealing a Local Authority’s refusal to issue an Education, Health and Care Plan (often abbreviated to EHCP) please contact us immediately so that we can advise about the best way forward and address the matter promptly.
The Local Authority will decide whether or not to issue an EHCP once the EHC Needs Assessment has been carried out.
If, in your case, the Local Authority, has agreed to issue a plan, you may wish to ask us to review the plan to ensure it is appropriate and adequate. Contact us today to do so.
If the content of the EHCP is not satisfactory you should consider appealing the content of the plan; we can help with this, please contact us today.
A Local Authority should issue a plan following an EHC Needs Assessment if it is necessary for special educational provision to be made for a child or young person.
If the child or young person will receive the required provision without a plan (which is unlikely in most cases nowadays) then a plan is not required. We can advise if this is likely to be the case.
An EHCP requires the Local Authority to secure the required provision whereas without a plan the School (or other institute) must only use its best endeavours to secure the special educational provisions. We can advise on this.
It is therefore most important to consider promptly and carefully whether to appeal a refusal to issue a plan. There are strict deadlines and therefore we would advise that you contact us promptly or as soon as possible to discuss how we can help.
Appeal against contents of EHCP
If you are unhappy with or concerned about your child or young person’s Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP), please contact us today to discuss how we can help.
A child or young person has special educational needs if s/he has a learning difficulty or disability which calls for special educational provision to be made for him/her. A learning difficulty or disability arises where that child or young person has a significant greater difficulty in learning than the majority of others of the same age, or has a disability which prevents or hinders him/her from making use of facilities generally provided for others of the same age in mainstream schools/mainstream post-16 institutions.
An EHCP should contain the following sections:
A: the views, interests and aspirations of the child and his parents or the young person;
B: the child or young person’s special educational needs (“SEN”);
C: health care needs which relate to their SEN;
D: social care needs which relate to their SEN or to a disability;
E: the outcomes sought for the child or young person;
F: the special educational provision required to meet their SEN;
G: any health care provision reasonably required by the learning difficulties or disabilities which result in the child or young person having SEN;
H: any social care provision required from social services under the Chronically Sick and Disabled Persons Act 1970, and/or reasonably required by the learning difficulties or disabilities which result in the child or young person having SEN;
I: the name of the school or other institution to be attended by the child or young person, and the type of that institution (or just the type if no specific institution is named);
J: details of any direct payment which will be made;
K: copies of all of the advice and information obtained as part of the EHC Needs Assessment.
It is a legal requirement that section F must be detailed and specific; this is to ensure that it is implementable and enforceable and leaves the Local Authority with no room to argue about its meaning. If it is not detailed and specific it will largely be meaningless and unenforceable. For example, “the Local Authority will make speech language therapy available for Tom”. What does this mean? Contrast “the Local Authority will arrange for a speech language therapist of X years qualification with Z experience/qualifications to attend ABC school and provide a minimum of one hour of one on one speech language therapy to Tom.” It is like obtaining a medical diagnosis and prescription.
Please contact us today to discuss how we can help.