Direct payments and personal budgets

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Dear Medway Council

1.Please provide a copy of your policy regarding the trialling of SEN Direct Payments and personal budgets.

2. Please confirm whether all parents/carers issued with a new or amended statement since January 2012 have been informed about their right to apply for a Direct Payment for SEN provision under the Special Educational Needs (Direct Payments) (Pilot Scheme) Order 2012. How has this information been provided? Please provide a copy of any standard leaflet or letter issued together with confirmation of date of issue.

3. Please confirm the number of parents/carers who are receiving SEN Direct Payments and what those Direct Payments relate to.

4. Please confirm whether any of these SEN Direct Payments could be provided outside the Pathfinder project, e.g. payments under Part 6 of a statement for transport.

5. Please provide a copy of your policy for considering requests for direct payments for SEN provision. If you do not have a policy, please confirm whether there are any limits placed on direct payments applications, e.g. they will not be provided if the LA has a block contract or there is a financial limit. Please confirm whether these criteria are communicated to parents and provide a copy of that document .

6. Please confirm your arrangements for reviewing appeals against a refusal of a request for SEN Direct Payments. Please provide a copy of any policy and any leaflet/letter issued to parents explaining this.

7. Please confirm what information is provided to parents/carers about the trialling of personal budgets. Please provide a copy of any leaflet or letter issued.

8. Please confirm how many parents/carers are receiving a personal budget within the auspices of the Pathfinder project?

9. Please confirm how parents/carers in receipt of SEN Direct Payments/ personal budgets obtained the information to make an application. For example, were they:

(a) sent the information with a new or amended statement
(b) recruited as part of a specific pilot
(c) neither (a )or (b), the family approached the LA having heard about SEN Direct Payments/personal budgets from other sources

10. Please provide a copy of your local offer.

Yours faithfully

Measure Up!

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Dear Measure up
 
Please see the attached Acknowledgment letter regarding your Freedom Of
Information request
 
Your Sincerely
 
 
Kyle Maryott
Customer Relations Officer (Temporary)
Business Support Directorate
Medway Council
Gun Wharf
Dock Road
Chatham
ME4 4TR
 
[1][email address].uk 
Visit our website: [2]www.medway.gov.uk
 
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relations, customer, Medway Council

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Dear Measure Up

 

Request for Information Reference Number RFI/ 101000111522

 

Further to your request for information received on 8 July 2013

 

As per the request below, please find attached a letter and related
attachments in response to the FOI request.

 

 

Email from: Measure Up! ([FOI #167908 email])
Subject: Freedom of Information request - Direct payments and personal
budgets
Dear Medway Council 1.Please provide a copy of your policy regarding the
trialling of SEN Direct Payments and personal budgets. 2. Please confirm
whether all parents/carers issued with a new or amended statement since
January 2012 have been informed about their right to apply for a Direct
Payment for SEN provision under the Special Educational Needs (Direct
Payments) (Pilot Scheme) Order 2012. How has this information been
provided? Please provide a copy of any standard leaflet or letter issued
together with confirmation of date of issue. 3. Please confirm the number
of parents/carers who are receiving SEN Direct Payments and what those
Direct Payments relate to. 4. Please confirm whether any of these SEN
Direct Payments could be provided outside the Pathfinder project, e.g.
payments under Part 6 of a statement for transport. 5. Please provide a
copy of your policy for considering requests for direct payments for SEN
provision. If you do not have a policy, please confirm whether there are
any limits placed on direct payments applications, e.g. they will not be
provided if the LA has a block contract or there is a financial limit.
Please confirm whether these criteria are communicated to parents and
provide a copy of that document . 6. Please confirm your arrangements for
reviewing appeals against a refusal of a request for SEN Direct Payments.
Please provide a copy of any policy and any leaflet/letter issued to
parents explaining this. 7. Please confirm what information is provided to
parents/carers about the trialling of personal budgets. Please provide a
copy of any leaflet or letter issued. 8. Please confirm how many
parents/carers are receiving a personal budget within the auspices of the
Pathfinder project? 9. Please confirm how parents/carers in receipt of SEN
Direct Payments/ personal budgets obtained the information to make an
application. For example, were they: (a) sent the information with a new
or amended statement (b) recruited as part of a specific pilot (c) neither
(a )or (b), the family approached the LA having heard about SEN Direct
Payments/personal budgets from other sources 10. Please provide a copy of
your local offer. Yours faithfully Measure Up!
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Regards
 
 
Customer Relations
 

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Dear Sir/Madam,

Thank you for your helpful response.

Unfortunately, we could not open the document entitled 'personal budgets'. Could you provide another copy?

Additionally, could we ask for clarification of the following responses:

In Qu.2, we asked "Please confirm whether all parents/carers issued with a new or amended statement since January 2012 have been informed about their right to apply for a Direct Payment for SEN provision under the Special Educational Needs (Direct Payments) (Pilot Scheme) Order 2012. How has this information been provided? Please provide a copy of any standard leaflet or letter issued together with confirmation of date of issue". You have provided a document with some information on direct payments. Is this the letter?

Can you please confirm, in accordance with the question, whether it is sent out with every new or amended statement and what the date of issue of this letter is?

In relation to Qu.3, you say no parents have opted for DPs yet your leaflet confirms you are not offering SEN DPs as your budget is delegated. Can you confirm whether any parents have applied and been refused?

In relation to Qu.5, you say your policy is 'draft'. It is undated. Does this mean it has not yet been applied? It does not match what is said in your information leaflet. Is this document being shared with parents?

In relation to Qu.6, you refer to your draft SEN policy again. This does not set out the details of the arrangements for an appeal against a refusal of SEN DPs and it is not clear whether this document has been communicated to parents. Can you confirm whether you do have an internal policy/guidelines on an appeal of a refusal and how or whether this is communicated to parents?

In relation to Qu.9. you say "eligibility for funding and availability of a personal budget is identified through the assessment process". Our question asked: "Please confirm how parents/carers in receipt of SEN Direct Payments/ personal budgets obtained the information to make an application. For example, were they: (a) sent the information with a new or amended statement (b) recruited as part of a specific pilot (c) neither (a )or (b), the family approached the LA having heard about SEN Direct Payments/personal budgets from other sources." Your response suggests makes no reference to SEN DPs and it is not clear what the personal budgets are for or what process of assessment is being referred to. Can you clarify whether the council are selecting families for participation?

Your sincerely,

Measure Up!

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