The Local Authority have a duty to provide SEN Mediation and Disagreement Resolution services. This is commonly known as Mediation. Mediation is a process in which the people involved in a dispute work together with the help of a mediator to reach an acceptable solution.
The mediator is a specially trained independent facilitator, with knowledge of the legislation relating to SEN, health, and social care, who does not take sides and does not give advice or judgement but manages discussions fairly and confidentially to help people communicate and explore options and to help to clarify the nature of the disagreement in preparation for the mediation session. The child’s or young person’s needs and interests are always kept at the heart of these discussions.
The law says you have to consider whether to enter mediation before you can register your appeal so at the very least you must contact a mediation adviser, for whom contact details would be provided in the LA’s letter. Mediation services are free of charge.
KIDS Mediation Service for Bexley Residents
KIDS SEND (Special Educational Needs and Disability) Mediation service is an independent mediation and disagreement resolution service, which is free of charge for parents/carers and young people. The service helps to settle disagreements between parents or young people and local authorities (LA’s), schools or other education providers. These disputes are often about the SEND of children and young people, and how best to meet their needs.
The provision of mediation and disagreement resolution is a statutory requirement for local authorities. It offers an alternative to a tribunal hearing and is quicker and less formal. Mediation enables people to communicate better with each other, and it can help re-build relationships that have broken down.
For more information on KIDS: KIDS Mediation Service