Cerebra offer advice and information for children with brain conditions (including ASD). The excellent, free parent guides are also suitable for other types of disability especially the Accessing Public Services Toolkit, School Transport. See here. Cerebra also has a legal rights service, including template letters here.
Child Law Advice is operated by Coram Children’s Legal Centre. They provide specialist advice and information on child, family and education law to parents, carers and young people in England. There are two free of charge helplines, one for child and family law, the other for education law. The website has valuable information to check first here.
Previously known as 'Contact a Family', Contact provides a range of information and advice; on benefits, education, medical conditions, for parents of disabled children with medical conditions aged 0-25 years. For information about their free online and telephone helpline, see here and here
Contact is the umbrella organisation for all parent carer forums.
Council for Disabled Children
The Council for Disabled Children provides a range of resources. Also provides information about any forthcoming events. Read their briefing on the differences in the Local Offer websites in terms of the information provided by schools, and how effectively the Local Offer provides the information for parents.
Also available on the CDC website free of charge: 'Disabled Children and the Law' A Legal Handbook, 3rd edition February 2021'. All 11 chapters can be downloaded here.
The Council for Disabled Children also runs the IAS services (formerly known as Parent Partnership). To find your local IAS service and understand more about what support can be offered, see here.
Disability Rights UK
If you need to find out about the benefits to which you might be entitled as the parent of a child with a disability then this is a very good place to start. Their free Factsheets are really helpful and free! See here. They publish a yearly disability rights handbook (not free).
SENDIAS (Information, Advice and Support)
IAS are available to parents in every Local Authority. They are often very knowledgeable about local services and are required to have had legal training from IPSEA.
You can find your local SENDIAS service here.
SENDIAS service standards are here.
Most answers can be found on the IPSEA website, but when you need more information, there are three helplines, call in on Fridays and bookable appointments here.
Irwin Michell is a firm of solicitors whose Public Law division has produced a range of extremely useful Factsheets and Template letters which can be found here.
Just for Kids Law, School Exclusions Hub
Find information here
School Exclusions Project
Find information here
IPSEA page for children out of school and exclusions here
You may be entitled to Legal Aid to assist you with the preparation of your appeal. In all cases, a financial eligibility assessment will be undertaken.
If you own a property, the value of the property, less any mortgage owed on the property, is taken into consideration, along with income, savings, valuable items.
What does Legal Aid Cover?
Legal Aid will mean you will have a firm of solicitors who have a Legal Aid contract for Education, to assist with the preparation of your appeal.
Please note: this does not (in all but the most exceptional cases) include the provision of a representative for the hearing of your appeal.
Legal Aid can also fund, where appropriate, reports by independent professionals, such as an assessment by an independent Educational Psychologist or independent Speech and Language therapist, during the appeal process.
How can I find a Legal Aid solicitor?
There are two routes:
1. Civil Aid Agency CLA (generally known as legal aid. See here.
2. Direct approach to a local Legal Aid solicitor. See here.
If you have questions about Judicial Review read Barrister Steve Broach's blog Rights in Reality here .
Steve Broach is one of the authors of 'Disabled Children and the Law - A Legal Handbook' available to download from the Council for Disabled Children's website.
If you need to find out more about Social Care and the law (for both children and adults) , his website is a treasure trove of resources. Please see here. Luke also provides talks to Parent Forums.
Luke is one of the authors of 'Disabled Children and the Law - A Legal Handbook' available to download from the Council for Disabled Children's website.
National Autistic Society
The National Autistic Society provides a wealth of information about all issues relevant to raising a child with autism or being a person with autism. The National Autistic Society runs a Education Advice Helpline. For contact details see here.
Provides a national helpline, 'walk in' advice centres, as well as a range of useful Information Sheets and booklets. See here.
There can be many things that affect a young person’s mood, if the low mood or anxiety arising for any reason affects daily life, Young Minds have dedicated helplines for young people, parents and those who work with young people. Mental health 24/7 text support links here
* Please note if a person is in danger seek immediate medical help*