Mediation

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Mediation is a process by which a neutral third party – the mediator - facilitates the resolution of a dispute or conflict. Mediation is based on exploring important issues, clarifying misunderstandings, exploring solutions, and negotiating a mutually agreeable outcome

Mediation is an effective way of resolving disputes without the need to go through a Tribunal hearing. It involves an independent third party - a mediator - who helps both sides come to an agreement.

All mediators are experienced in drafting and negotiating working documents where the issues concern the contents of a Statement of Special Educational Needs.

All mediators have a thorough knowledge and extensive expertise in education, social care and all stages and aspects of SEN and the SEND Tribunal process and disability. Our mediators will ensure that all participants are provided with the necessary support and guidance to ensure that everyone has an appropriate understanding of the relevant issues and the implications of any agreements that are reached during mediation.

This model of mediation aims to provide all parties with expert and detailed knowledge as to their roles, rights and responsibilities and aims to deliver informed, impartial mediated solutions that assist both parties to move forwards in an efficient and time effective manner. It also aims to resolve disputes before they become adversarial and necessitate formal tribunal appeal and court proceedings. Mediation will minimise the time and expense involved in resolving complex disputes whilst aiming to establish a constructive and cooperative on-going relationship between the parties. The mediator will manage the working document and negotiation regarding appropriate wording within the statement.

As in more traditional models of mediation, our mediators will use their mediation skills to develop effective communication, building a consensus between both parties about what can/cannot be agreed and promote a longer term working relationship between the parties. The focus of a mediation meeting is to reach a common sense settlement agreeable to both parties. Mediation is confidential and without prejudice and does not affect a parent's or child’s statutory rights.

Our package of mediation services can be used to resolve any disputes between schools, professionals, LAs and parents, carers or pupils regarding educational provision and placement or social care issues and entitlements, child protection or other safeguarding issues or any other relevant matters concerning education, social care and associated services.

Once all parties have agreed to mediation, the mediator contacts the parents and the LA/school to see what they consider to be the areas under dispute. The areas of dispute are written up and sent to each party for accuracy. The parties will be invited to attend the mediation meeting at the same time. There will be facilities for the parents and the LA/school to each have a private meeting room apart from the main mediation room. Any agreements will be written up and signed by both parties. Any areas that either party may want to consider to agree upon will be noted and a time scale agreed for notification of the agreement

If the areas of dispute concern the contents of a statement of special educational needs a working document will be drawn up by the mediator and signed by all parties. The mediator will continue negotiating the working document up to the point that both parties agree the contents or the situation is such that no further agreement is possible. Either party will have the opportunity to consider their agreement/disagreement up until the agreement is formalised as part of any relevant statutory process.

Get in touch today to find out how SEN Adviser can help
you in all areas of Special Educational Needs (SEN).
You can email info@senadviser.co.uk
or call us on 07872 030 887.

"Impressive understanding of the mediation process, as one of the participants I was very satisfied with the way that you dealt with both parties, set the ground rules, explained the possible outcomes, how the process would occur and facilitated an agreement that allowed each party to gain some mutual respect and understanding and laid the foundations for a greater working relationship for the future."
IB, Norfolk


"I have worked with the SEN Adviser services in the area of special educational needs for a number of years. The service has an extraordinary way of supporting and communicating with parents who are in an extremely emotional and vulnerable situation. The support not only guides parents to make informed decisions but to facilitate and mediate between professionals, always keeping the best interest of the child or adolescent as the priority. The SEN Adviser can translate the most complicated legislation to people of all backgrounds, is a pleasure to work with and conducts everything in the most professional manner at all times."
AK, Bristol


"Highly professional approach ensured that all parties to an extremely difficult and complex matter affecting the whole school came out with a greater understanding of the key issues of SEN and disability, improved immediate and longer term communications for all and came out with a clear and effective solution that everyone could work with!"
MC, Sheffield