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7. What support is available if I disagree with decisions or outcomes?
We encourage families to talk to the SENCo in the education setting, the nominated support contact in colleges, or the Local Authority in the first instance to resolve any matters together informally. Liaise (Information, Advice and Support Service in Lincolnshire) can also provide informal disagreement resolution. However, if issues cannot be resolved this way, an independent service is in place to help children/young people and their parents, the Local Authority and Health resolve any continued disagreements that they may have. The service is available for all those with SEND aged 0-25yrs old, not just those who have an EHC plan.
This service will cover four types of disagreement:
- Between parents or children/young people and the Local Authority or governors about how they are carrying out their EHC duties for children;
- Disagreements between parents or children/young people and providers about the SEND provision;
- Disagreements between parents or children/young people and Health or Local Authority about Health or Social Care provision during EHC assessments, plans or reviews;
- Disagreements between the Local Authority and Health commissioners about EHC assessments, plans or reviews.
In Lincolnshire, this service is provided by Global Mediation Ltd.
Who else can I talk to
What to do if you disagree with an EHC decision pathway
EHC needs assessment decision
Young person/parent is dissatisfied with a decision by the Local Authority.
Young person/parent is advised to speak with the education setting's SENCO and/or the information, Advice and Support Service: Liaise
If the young person/parent remains dissatisfied with the decisions, they may contact Global Mediation within 2 months of the date of the decision to consider their options.
- Young person/parent are satisfied that mediation advice has been provided and the family do not wish to continue dispute. Dispute is resolved.
- Young person/parent want to proceed with mediation.
- If the young person/parent remain dissatisfied with the decision and do not wish to pursue mediation then Global Mediation will issue a certificate that evidences they have considered mediation. This certificate allows them to appeal to the Special Educational Needs and Disability Tribunal.
If young person/parent wishes to pursue mediation, Global Mediation then have 30 calendar days to arrange a mediation meeting.
Mediation takes place between the young person/parent, Local Authority and other related parties facilitated by Global Mediation Ltd
- Young person/parent are satisfied with the outcome of mediation. Global Mediation issue a certificate to confirm mediation is complete. Decisions agreed in mediation are actioned. Dispute is resolved.
- Young person/parent are not satisfied with the outcome of mediation advice and/or mediation, family may appeal to SEND first tier tribunal
If the young person/parent remains dissatisfied with the decisions, then Global Mediation will issue a certificate to enable them to appeal to the Special Educational Needs and Disability Tribunal.
Young people/parents have 2 months to register their appeal from the date of the disputed decision, or one month from the date of the certificate, whichever is the latter.
Tribunal appeals take up to 20 weeks to be heard once registered. The decision and reasons are issued via post within 10 working days to the young person/parent and relevant parties involved, directly from the Special Educational Needs and Disability Tribunal.
For further information, see Right to appeal to the First-Tier Tribunal.
Decisions made at the tribunal are actioned by the Local Authority.