Support for parents and carers

SEND Mediation Service and Independent Parental Special Education Advice (IPSEA)

SEND Mediation Service

This service offers an independent mediation service for children and young people with a special educational need or disability (SEND) in line with requirements laid out in the Children and Families Act of 2014, where there is a dispute concerning the support they have been offered.

The service targets families and children and young people aged 0-25 years old who wish to dispute a decision made about their access to an EHC Plan, or the plan itself.

The service aims:

a) to work with families and children and young people aged 0-25 years to facilitate an early solution to disputes connected to special educational needs entitlements and EHC Plans

b) to gather information from all parties to allow for a fair and balanced discussion of the decision

c) to organise suitable times and venues for all meetings

d) to work with families and schools and Local Authority representatives in a structured and unbiased format to attempt to reach agreement at an early stage of a dispute

e) where agreement is not possible, to provide a clear explanation of why this is the case, and outline the next steps available for both parties

Tel: 0207 359 3635

Independent Parental Special Education Advice (IPSEA)

IPSEA is a volunteer-based organisation and many of the volunteers providing telephone advice and support at tribunals are themselves parents of children with special educational needs who have been helped by IPSEA in the past.

IPSEA’s aims are:

  • to help ensure that children with special educational needs receive the special educational provision to which they are legally entitled
  • to help ensure that parents and children’s views are taken into account when children’s needs are assessed and decisions are made about special education provision and school placements

IPSEA may be able to help if you feel your child’s needs are not being met, e.g. if:

  • you want the Local Authority (LA) to assess your child, but they refuse
  • the LA refuse to issue a statement after assessing your child
  • you want to appeal against a statement when it is first made or when it is amended
  • you are not happy with the way the school is meeting your child’s special educational needs
  • the LA will not put the school you prefer on the statement
  • you are unhappy with the amount of help your child is being given

General Advice Line: 0800 018 4016  

Advice on: Problems with schools; requesting statutory assessment; proposed statements; annual reviews; disability discrimination; exclusion, etc.

Tribunal Help Line: 0845 602 9579  

Next-step advice on SEN appeals and disability discrimination claims to the Special Educational Needs and Disability Tribunal.

When you call we will assess whether you need casework support.

Website: Independent Parental Special Education Advice (link opens in new window)


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