Advocacy and Arbitration
From individual primary schools to large multi-academy trusts we have worked on every kind of educational establishment including voluntary aided private schools. Our long involvement in the education sector has given us a unique, in-depth understanding of how schools function and we are perfectly placed to help you on your journey.
We can offer:
Advice on the appropriateness of Home Education and Education Otherwise than at School for pupils with Special Educational Needs
Advice on the LA’s obligation or ability to fund Flexi Schooling /Home Education/Home Programmes / Internet Based Learning/ Alternative Education/College placements for pupils with Special Educational Needs
Negotiation and Mediation with the LA for funding for Home based /Flexi programmes
Preparation of paperwork, representations and statements for Tribunal Hearings.
Representation at the Tribunal Hearing
Attendance at meetings with Schools or Local Authorities
Sometimes difficult issues or situations can be resolved via a face to face meeting enabling the situation to be sorted swiftly and without the need to go through protracted written correspondence, complaints procedures or Tribunal and Appeal processes. A named advocate will go through the paperwork, meet with the client prior to the meeting and support the client in a meeting with a School or Local Authority, Parents can feel intimidated, not listened to, not taken seriously or outnumbered at meetings and the support of an advocate can be invaluable in enabling their views to be heard and the situation to be resolved.
The named advocate will require the parents to send all relevant paperwork a week prior to the meeting and arrange to meet the parents before the meeting. Subsequently a written summary and action plan will be produced.
Tribunal Paperwork and Representation
Our consultants have extensive experience in supporting and representing parents at SEND Tribunals in both SEN appeals and Disability Discrimination Claims .We have successfully obtained Statutory Assessments, Statements of Special Educational Needs, parents preferred school placements, Independent and Residential Special school placements and apologies and training in response to breaches of the Disability Discrimination legislation.
Exclusion paperwork and representation
Our consultants have extensive experience is supporting and representing parents at exclusion hearings. We are able to offer representation for both fixed term and permanent exclusion hearings, including representation at the stage two Independent Appeal Panel (IAP) hearings. We offer fixed fee prices for each appeal; thus enabling parents to budget at the beginning of the process. The only additional costs may be expert reports, if required, and photocopying, postage and travel.
For a first stage governors hearing and Independent Appeal Panel Hearing
We will meet with the client before the hearing, read through exclusion paperwork, prepare the documentation and represent at the hearing. Should the client require further meetings they will be charged at the standard meeting rate.
Some exclusion cases can be managed by virtue of negotiating with the school and local authority that may result in a resolution without a formal hearing being convened. This option will be considered on a case-by-case basis.
Child Protection and Care Proceedings Advocacy