Involving Parents

Last modified: March 12, 2019
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One of the key principles of the Children and Families Act 2014 was that children, young people and their parents had a voice.

If you feel your school, LA or other statutory body is not involving you, your child or young person, this is where it says in the legislation that they must.

Section 19 (Children & Family Act)

A local authority in England must have regard to the following matters in particular—

  • the views, wishes and feelings of the child and his or her parent, or the young person
  • the importance of the child and his or her parent, or the young person, participating as fully as possible in decisions relating to the exercise of the function concerned;
  • the importance of the child and his or her parent, or the young person, being provided with the information and support necessary to enable participation in those decisions;
  • the need to support the child and his or her parent, or the young person, in order to facilitate the development of the child or young person and to help him or her achieve the best possible educational and other outcomes.

Code of Practice

Local authorities must

  • ensure that children, young people and parents are provided with the information, advice and support necessary to enable them to participate in discussions and decisions about their support. (chapter 1.9 – Code of Practice)
  • ensure the child’s parents or the young person are fully included in the EHC needs assessment process from the start, are fully aware of their opportunities to offer views and information, and are consulted about the content of the plan (Chapter 9.2 – Code of Practice)
  • consult children with SEN or disabilities, and their parents and young people with SEN or disabilities when reviewing local SEN and social care provision (Chapter 4.2 – Code of Practice)
  • consult them in developing and reviewing their Local Offer (Chapter 4.7 – Code of Practice)
  • involve children with SEN or disabilities and their parents and young people with SEN or disabilities in:
      • planning the content of the Local Offer
      • deciding how to publish the Local Offer
      • reviewing the Local Offer, including by enabling them to make comments about it

(Chapter 4.8 – Code of Practice)

  • make arrangements for providing children with SEN or disabilities, and their parents, and young people with SEN or disabilities with advice and information about matters relating to SEN and disability (Chapter 2 – Code of Practice)

If you feel that your school is not involving you, please refer them to the above.  If despite this, they still do not involve you, then contact your Local Authority SEND team.  The Children and Families Act 2014 (Section 42) is clear that the LA must secure the specified special educational provision.

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Further Information

Children and Families Act:

http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2014/6/contents/enacted

SEND Code of Practice:

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/398815/SEND_Code_of_Practice_January_2015.pdf

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