Our son is 6 years old, he is diagnosed with Autism and is on the waiting list for ADHD. He was traumatised by a mainstream School where at the age of 4 he was self harming due to unmet needs and consistantly being punished for behaviours related to his hidden disability such as stimming and not being able to pay attention and sit still during assembly.
He was constantly in a state of fight or flight, punching himself in the head, scratching his face, he said he hated the world and wanted to die.
He was unofficially excluded and told to stay home for three days while they were filming the School play. He was not able to attend trips unless we went. In 2020 we felt like we had lost our child, who was once such a happy, confident little boy.
After being rejected for an EHCP we appealed, we won that battle but then the next one started to try and get him into a specialist unit. After the stress and a long fight we got him a place, however this is still not the right placement.
There is no suitable School for him within reasonable travel distance, his reports state he needs a specialist ASD School but they don't exist in our area! He is stuck in a specialist unit doing upto 3 hours a day,
School do their best but they agree they can't meet needs due to him having average intelligence, and the unit's are predominantly for children who have a learning disability or who are at least 2-3 years behind academically.
I've asked for Education Other Than At School (EOTAS), due to no other choice and I have been told to Electively Home Educate if I want! They then referred to a PRU (the PRU rejected and asked if the local authority had made a mistake). The local authority asked me 'what is EOTAS?'.
We are now currently fighting this with no support and no doubt have to take this to tribunal despite having all the evidence needed. I feel totally let down by the system and the lack of specialist places for children who need it. The damage is indescribable.