ASL Myth: Local authorities must respond to a parent’s request for a specific assessment within a certain time period.

FACTS: Under the ASL Act, parents can ask education authorities to consider whether their child has additional support needs. At the same time they can ask for a specific type of assessment (such as an educational, medical or psychological assessment or examination). They can also ask for a specific assessment at any time for a child who has additional support needs. Education authorities must agree to both types of request unless they think the request is unreasonable. However, there is no timescale set out in the law for them to agree to or carry out the assessment.

In most cases an education authority will respond to a request as quickly as possible. If you have made a request for an assessment and have not heard back from your education authority after a few weeks it is worth contacting them to make sure they have received your request.

For appropriate agencies (e.g. health or social work services) there is a 10-week timescale to respond to a request from an education authority for help with an assessment (there are exceptions to this rule such as if a child or young person fails to turn up to an appointment or the assessment cannot be done). If you have any other questions please phone the Enquire helpline on 0345 123 2303.

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Helpline: 0345 123 2303

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