I was advised to get my son’s Education Health and Care Plan (EHCP) started early. This was great advice, we put the request in a few months after his autism diagnosis at 2.5 years old. I had heard lots of stories of people being turned down so was quite daunted by the process. Thankfully my son’s EHCP was granted and it all went well for us. It took a while but the process was clear and we felt supported throughout. The recommendations within the plan gave us and his Pre-School things we could focus on.
So you are thinking about or need to apply for Disability Living Allowance (DLA). It is a mammoth form and a very daunting task, no one wants to list out everything that their child struggles with on a government form.
When my son was first diagnosed as autistic we were told to apply for DLA, if I’m honest I was very uncomfortable with this. Why was I uncomfortable? Well I thought I was doing that same as most parents with young children and although some things are difficult to manage, your average toddler is particularly difficult at times. I now realise that this benefit is there to support people with additional needs.
In this post I will provide some information about DLA, including some advice in relation to completing the form for a child with autism and some general tips for completing the form.
When I started to look at local specialist schools in the West of England I assumed there would be a full list somewhere. There wasn’t, my local authority were very helpful in providing the schools in their area but not the suitable schools in neighbouring local authorities. I soon found this was a similar struggle for other parents.
So I have pulled together the information I have on schools and resource bases for children with disabilities and additional educational needs in the West of England.
Personally I was wary of putting my son (first born) into nursery at 20 months old, he seemed so young and we were starting to have concerns about progress, particularly around his speech and language. However my second child was on the way and many people had advised me he would do well in nursery. Continue reading “Early Years Support”
What is a Common Assessment Framework / CAF?
The Common Assessment Framework (CAF), it is a standardised document / assessment that is used across various agencies to identify a young child’s needs and plan a co-ordinated approach to meet those needs.
A CAF is usually used when a child requires additional support. It can be driven by the parent or anyone working with the child, in our case it was suggested by our health visitor, she also completed the assessment and form.