- Miss X The complainant
- Y Her son
Miss X complained that the Council: failed to make alternative provision for her son, Y, when he was unable to attend school due to anxiety caused by the school not meeting his needs; delayed in completing an education, health and care plan needs assessment; and delayed in dealing with her complaints about the Council’s failure to make alternative provision and delay in completing the needs assessment.
Fault found causing injustice and recommendations made.
The Council must consider the report and confirm within three months the action it has taken or proposes to take. The Council should consider the report at its full Council, Cabinet or other appropriately delegated committee of elected members and we will require evidence of this. (Local Government Act 1974, section 31(2), as amended)
In addition to the requirements set out above, the Council should:
send a written apology to Miss X for the distress caused to her and Y by not making suitable alternative provision for him and for the delay in issuing a final education, health and care plan;
pay Miss X £1,600 on behalf of Y to acknowledge he did not receive full-time suitable education between June 2021 and February 2022;
pay Miss X £2,400 on behalf of Y to acknowledge he has not received any educational provision between February and 26 June 2022;
pay Miss X £1,000 to acknowledge the distress, avoidable time and trouble and impact on her ability to work caused by the Council’s failure to provide suitable alternative provision to Y;
pay Miss X £2,200 to reimburse the cost of the educational psychologist assessment which she commissioned;
by training or other means, ensure officers are aware of the Council’s duty under section 19 of the Education Act 1996 to provide suitable education to children unable to attend school and the factors they should consider when deciding whether alternative provision should be made; and
- ensure it has procedures for tracking pupils who require alternative provision, including for absences other than for medical reasons, to ensure that provision is regularly reviewed to meet their education and special educational needs.
Ombudsman satisfied with Council's response: 10 March 2023.