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(UK) Bristol: Council has to pay $2,000 for 6 month delay in SPED plan

Oct 17, 2022, Bristol Live: Bristol City Council pays £1,750 [$2,000] compensation for SEND student failures

SW England

Bristol City Council has paid out £1,750 compensation for failures that left a vulnerable student without vital support for six months. The authority failed to issue an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP) in time for the special educational needs (SEN) teenager who, as a result, missed half a year of speech and language therapy that they should have received.

Watchdogs upheld a complaint against the council, which has apologised and agreed to pay £1,500 to the youngster and £250 to their dad and take urgent action to improve how it ensures SEN provision is in place. The city council said it accepted the ruling and that a new quality assurance framework was implemented last month to improve the annual review process, along with an EHCP electronic portal launched in July to enable close monitoring of review dates. In its report, the Local Government Ombudsman said the authority’s delay in completing an annual review of the EHCP for the child, referred to as B, and failure to issue an amended plan within statutory timescales was “fault”, which means maladministration or service failure. It said: “The council was also at fault for failing to ensure the education provision in B’s plan was in place. “As a result, B started post-16 education without an up-to-date plan and missed six months of speech and language therapy. To remedy this injustice, the council has agreed to apologise, pay £1,750, and act to improve its services.”…

Bristol City Council has paid compensation to a student with special educational needs (Image: Bristol Live)

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