What is the process and what are our contracts with brokering LEAs?
LEAs can broker Arun Court Setting places for students funded by EHCP. Due to our geography we are most likely to work with Surrey, Hampshire and Sussex but we are open to working with any viable LEA and we have already had past requests for services under Big Bear Bespoke Education Ltd for students living in Merton, Kent, Berkshire and Bracknell Forest.
Places are client specific and are offered on a ‘first come, first served’ basis. LEAs should make the initial approach, not parents, and can do so by sending the EHCP, Annual Reviews and any other relevant information to firstname.lastname@example.org
1.The paperwork is usually reviewed within two days, and in this time we review the case against our admissions checklist.
2. We will reply as to whether we can meet need. If we can meet need, we will either carry out a home visit, or invite the family to visit us. Sometimes we require both.
3. No placement is offered until the student has successfully completed a 5 day trial
Places should be for a minimum of 12 months, unless special terms have been agreed for a specific student. This is because past experience has taught us that it takes at least a year of therapeutic input as a minimum, and can often take 18 – 24 months, to get a student to a position where they can first consider transition to another setting. Some students need to stay longer to ensure they are properly safegaurded; we will not support sending a student to another setting if we believe them to be mentally at high risk.
We are an independet school and therefore our policies around expulsion are very different to a state school - please read the below statement.
EXPULSIONS (EXCLUSIONS) & CHILD PROTECTION
It is very important that any brokering LEA visits our setting and fully understands what it means to be a health-led facility, and a private facility in our context. Our current LEA contracts reserve the right to terminate a placement AT ANY STAGE if we feel that a student is placing other young people in harm, we will always hold the needs of the majority at the forefront of what we do. We always employ a collaborative, working party approach and we have to feel that when incidents of a serious nature occur parents are working with us, not against us. We will always go the extra mile, however if necessary we will robustly argue our case in court regarding protecting the well-being of very vulnerable young people by refusing to have a student on site until appropriate assessment of risk, and appropropriate actions to reduce risk, have been taken and if necessary funded. It is not in the social or mental interests of a child to be putting others at risk and to be isolating themselves further by their behaviour. If we do not feel our setting is benefitting a student's mental health we will make that very clear and have an expectation that any brokering LEA moves swiftly to find an appropriate placement; as we will not be put in a position where we are effectively further damaging a student by being forced to accommodate them when our professional view is that their presence is damaging to both themselves and others. IT IS LEGALLY ASSUMED, THAT BY TAKING A CONTRACT OUT WITH US, THE LEA HAS AGREED TO THIS STATEMENT & THE CONTENT THEREIN
Annual safeguarding report and return to the Local authority
Regular alternative provision inspection by the LEA (last one 20th Jan 2017) and annual commissioning meeting
"Overall we were of the view that this was very effective provision which met the needs of a very vulnerable group of learners whom the LA had been unable to place elsewhere"
Surrey LEA, January 2017
OFSTED (usually every 3 years) (last one 2019)
We broker an independent audit for safeguarding bi-annually
We carry out a review of education and mental health services with external NHS advisors bi-annually
This is the website for Arun Court School. If you are looking for Big Bear Bespoke Education consultancy please go to
SOURCES OF HELP
These services are not associated with us. We are not responsible for the quality of service they provide, we are recommending them based on the positive experiences of some young people known to us. By inclusion in this list nor are we suggesting that we are in any way affiliated with these servcies.
ANXIETY UK - Support, online counselling, magazine, advice
Text line: 07537416905
Info line: 03444775774
A magazine packed full of useful articles around not just ASD, but the mental health aspects associated with it - fascinating reading and lots of signalling to specialist support.
Website provides support for young people, professionals and parents. Young people who feel they are having a mental health crisis can get instant emergency support by texting YM to 85258
OCD UK - advice, online counselling, support and magazine. Dedicated youth services.
PAPYRUS - suicide prevention young people's hotline 0800 068 41 41
An eating disorder support service - smaller than some of the bigger associations, but specifically aimed at young people.