Placing requests would normally be made by the parents of the child but it could also be made by someone authorised by the parents to act on their behalf. Young people over the age of 16 years can also make a placing request themselves or by somebody the young person has authorised to act on their behalf if they have the capacity to make such a choice.
Placing Requests should be made to the Service Manager - Education (ASN) and must be made in a certain way:
- It must be made in writing which includes e-mail, or some other form that can be kept and referred to at a later date
- It must name at least one specific special provision – there is no limit to the number of special schools or special classes that may be named
- It must give a statement of reasons for the request
If agreed, we will place the child or young person in the school requested (or meet those responsible fees and other reasonably necessary costs in relation to the special school not managed by us). If we refuse a placing request, we must provide a legal ‘ground of refusal’ that complies with the Education (Additional Support for Learning) (Scotland) Act 2004.
Where a placing request is made to a special provision not managed by us it can be refused if the school is not a public school; we can meet the needs of the child or young person in a school other than the requested school and we have offered the child or young person a place at that school; and it is not reasonable, considering both the suitability and cost (including necessary incidental expenses) to place the child or young person in the school requested.
We make decisions about placements in specialist provisions after careful consideration of assessment information presented to a panel of specialist advisers. The membership of the panel may vary but will always include a range of education professionals with expertise in additional support needs; it will also include health professionals and/or social workers who also have expertise and experience in understanding the needs of children and young people.
Placing requests for East Lothian specialist provisions will be considered by the Education Resource Group (ERG). If the ERG refuses a placing request there is a right of appeal to the Additional Support Needs Tribunals (ASNTS) for Scotland. The tribunal is independent of East Lothian Council. The letter informing parent/carers/young person of the refusal of their placing request will explain where an appeal should be made.
Parent(s) and young people can make as many placing requests as they wish, as often as they wish. However, an appeal against the refusal of a placing request can only be made once per year and it can only be for the first choice of school.