COVID 19 UPDATE
Guidance from the President of the Family Court Division issued this week has confirmed that the First Tier Tribunal will be adopting a ‘business as usual’ approach to appeals against decisions made about provision through EHC plans. As far as possible, tribunals will be going ahead as planned with most being conducted on paper or via video link. The full guidance can be found here.
Releasing Potential Mediation will continue to offer mediation and dispute resolution to families who wish to avoid tribunal, but we will also be operating a remote service. The service will offer enhance dispute resolution activities to Hampshire families as follows:
- On receipt of a referral call from the parent/carer/young person, we follow our standard process offering Tribunal Certificate or Mediation routes.
- Parents wishing to take the Mediation route then require additional information:
- Face-to-face mediations cannot be offered until further notice, instead:
- The Local Authority have agreed that our mediator can call you and take a thorough account of the situation that you are aiming to resolve and liaise with the Local Authority direct.
The mediator remains neutral but her involvement can quickly establish whether bringing more information to the dispute will be able to resolve it before mediation or whether mediation remains necessary.
Should mediation remain necessary, the mediation will be conducted using Zoom video conferencing. The mediation will be conducted by the mediator who has handled your case to date or another one of our mediators, depending on availability within the timescale.
- Parents should be aware that the 30 day limit still applies and that where mediation remains necessary, the conference call will likely be at short notice.
- We need you to have access to Zoom for mediation and we can help you with one-to-one coaching for installing this if you would like.
- We will now send you a Pre-Mediation Communication Agreement which we need you to accept by email before the mediator can call you (appendix 1).
Please call our dedicated mediation referrals line if you have any questions: 07764 326 384
The experts in SEND mediation
Releasing Potential Mediation is an educational mediation and dispute resolution service based in Hampshire and West Sussex, offering independent mediation in disputes involving decisions about a child or young person’s education. We are part of Releasing Potential, an educational charity and Department-for-Education-registered Independent School for students with Special Educational Needs. We are passionate about helping families to get the support they need, and we work closely with, but independent of, Local Authorities.
We offer free SEND appeal mediation between parents and their Local Education Authority, when a decision about a child's EHCP is in dispute. Parents can appeal against a refusal to assess for an EHCP, a decision to refuse an EHCP after assessment, or the details of an EHCP document. After an initial consultation, parents who do not wish to try mediation can request a certificate that will allow them to proceed directly to tribunal without mediation. Read more.....
We can offer educational mediation in the case of a breakdown in relationship between school and parent(s), students and teachers, students and classmates, and sets of parents. Our mediators will provide a supportive and productive space for honest conversation and encourage parties to find a way forward. We apply a restorative approach, and our mediators are fully qualified in Restorative Justice Facilitation.
We understand that getting the right information is vital to finding a resolution to your dispute and getting relationships back on track. Our resources page provides links and forms for SEND appeals, as well as useful information on the statutory obligations of the Local Authority and the support available to parents.
Telephone consultation with one of our expert mediation team is free of charge, and SEND mediation is also free of charge to parents appealing EHCP decisions by Hampshire County Council. For more information about our range of services or for a free consultation about the options available for appeal please call 07764 326384.
AddressReleasing Potential Mediation 7 Kingscroft Court
PO9 1LS Charity No: 1097440
Company No: 4622100
07764 326384 (Mediation Helpline)