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Ethan’s story

Ethan’s family needed help with Ethan’s EHC Plan. They were being asked to sign documents they didn’t understand. After face to face meetings with Kids SENDIASS team they got the support they needed to understand the process and get Ethan the support he was entitled to.

Ethan, 5, has a learning disability. His Dad, Mark, is a primary carer for Mum, Lizzy, who has both a learning and physical disability. Mark is the father of Ethan and Step-dad to Alfie, Bobby and Abi.

Getting help with the process

In the initial meeting Mark stated that he was frustrated as he did not know what support Ethan was receiving in school and why and what Education Health and Care Plan (EHC plan) was being applied for. He had been told to sign documents, which he had done, but he did not know what they said. Ethan’s dad stated that he struggled with reading himself and because of Lizzy’s learning disability he was asked to complete all paperwork.

Getting the support needed

We discussed the purpose of an EHC plan and why the school would be applying for one. After this explanation Mark agreed that it sounded like something that Ethan would benefit from. It was decided that a meeting would be arranged with the school to gather more information about Ethan’s support in school and why an EHC plan was being applied for.

Adapting the support

We also adapted the way that we worked with Mark and Lizzy in order to best support them. They preferred to meet in person so they were able to take in information that was being given. Telephone calls were kept short and infrequent. Information had to be repeated slowly supported by written steps to support Lizzy to take in the information. In order to support this a private room was booked at a local children’s centre. Extra time had to be allowed so that the family did not feel rushed and sometimes, because of Lizzy’s physical needs, the meetings had to be cut short as she was unable to sit for extended periods.

After the meeting Mark stated that he felt much clearer on Ethan’s needs and support. He then felt ready to complete the family conversation and with support put down his own and Mark’s aspirations for Ethan’s future.

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