Saturday, February 12, 2005

Burgers and Global Warming

Husband G to Son L (I take no part in this):

L: When I grow up I want to save the world and stop them chopping down trees

G: Why?

L: Because we need trees to breathe and they keep chopping the rainforests down and global warming and they said so at school

G: Global warming is about greenhouse gases

L: Durr! Yes I know

G: Best thing you can do is attack the American Burger industry then

L: Eh?

G: Well the problem isnt the trees they chop down, its the cows they put in their place

L: What?

G: Chop down trees, make space for cows, eat cows in burgers.

L: I get it - so if we didnt eat so many burgers we wouldnt cut so many trees down?

G: Not just that. If we didnt eat so many burgers there wouldnt be thousands and thousands of extra cows on the planet, all farting methane.....

Tuesday, February 01, 2005

Email #6

Dear Mrs White,

Further to your recent telephone conversation with my colleague, please find attached a copy of the letter issued to you on 30 November 2004.

Kind regards.

Mr Caseworker

30 November 2004

Mr P Caseworker

Dear Mrs Baggage

Statutory Assessment – Decision

We have now completed the statutory assessment of Lewis’ special educational needs and having carefully considered all the information received the Local Education Authority (LEA) has decided not to issue a statement of special educational needs at this time. We enclose a document called a note in lieu, which explains why the LEA does not think it is necessary to issue a statement. The note in lieu also outlines Lewis’ special educational needs and recommends appropriate educational provision.

During the assessment a lot of information has been brought together and this will help the school to support Lewis’ needs. It would be helpful if the note in lieu and the information collected during the assessment could be shared with the school and other professionals involved. If you do not agree with the information being circulated please let me know within 15 days, by 15-Dec-2004, otherwise I will send out the information.

We will ask the Head Teacher to arrange a meeting with you, key school staff and an Educational Psychologist to discuss the future programme of support for Lewis. This meeting will be an important opportunity for you to discuss how the recommendations of the note in lieu will be carried out and how Lewis’ progress will be monitored. It will be a chance for you to raise any concerns that you may have. If you still have any worries after the meeting please contact Mrs Casework Manager, on (phone) to discuss your concerns.

If you are unhappy with our decision you can obtain advice or support from the local parent partnership service. They can tell you about the informal arrangements which are available to help resolve or prevent disagreements between you and the LEA. The parent partnership service can be contacted at Parent Link, County Hall.

Using these services does not prevent you from appealing to the Special Educational Needs & Disability Tribunal (SENDIST) against our decision at the same time. If you wish to appeal you must do so within 2 months of the date of this letter. The Tribunal can be contacted at SENDIST, Mowden Hall, Staindrop Road, Darlington, DL3 9BG.

I enclose three leaflets for information:
 Guidance on how to express your concerns (KEEP TALKING)
 PARENTLINK an impartial source of information, advice and support.
 An independent mediation service 0800 064 4488

If you would like to discuss this letter further please do not hesitate to contact me.

Now that the statutory assessment process has been completed we would like your views on this process. I enclose a questionnaire and would appreciate your comments. Please complete and return the questionnaire in the prepaid envelope enclosed.

Yours sincerely

Mr Caseworker
Special Educational Needs

Ms, Educational Psychologist


Duty Team – Social Services Department

Email #5

Dear Mrs Baggage,

Thank you for your email. I trust you have sent your request to appeal to the Special Educational Needs & Disability Tribunal? You should contact the Tribunal direct to ensure they have received your paperwork. I have not received any recent correspondence from you but acknowledge you will be appealing against the decision to issue a 'Note in Lieu'.

There has been ongoing dialogue between the school and ourselves, however at the present time the decision not to issue a statement still stands. I can confirm that I have received a further letter from Lewis' school, which I will be discussing with our Senior Practitioner.

If I can be of further assistance, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Kind regards.

Mr Caseworker

Email #4

Dear Mr Caseworker

Wednesday last week I sent a letter stating that I wish to utilise my right to appeal against the decision regarding Lewis's special needs. I believe I have mentioned my wish to appeal in the past, verbally at least, if not by email, but want to make sure it is recorded. I left the letter until the last minute because ongoing communications between LEA and school imply that no firm decision has yet been reached.

I am anxious that my wish should have been recorded in time for the cut-off date prescribed. I would be very grateful if you could set my mind at rest and confirm receipt.

I am very aware that there are communication issues relating to Lewis' case that both sides are working to remedy (thank you) and that no note in lieu or other 'final' paperwork has yet been issued.

Nonetheless, to comply with the rules I find myself obliged to decide whether to appeal or not, at this uncertain stage. Please understand that I am opting to claim that right only against future possibilities, ie the outcome of the current communications between your department and the school and may wish to rescind if I feel it is no longer necessary. Its all a bit back to front at the moment, although I am very thankful that questions are being raised where your department feels they are needed.

I hope this is acceptable, and hope to hear from you

Many thanks