As parents and young people, your rights to try mediation are set out in section 52 of the Children and Families Act (CFA) 2014.

This says you have a right to try mediation where a decision is made which you could appeal to the SEND Tribunal, or where an EHC plan is made, amended or replaced.

The decisions made by your local authority (LA) which you can appeal are decisions:

  • not to carry out an EHC needs assessment
  • following an EHC needs assessment, not to issue an EHC plan
  • when first made, amended or replaced, in relation to sections B, F and/or I of an EHC plan
  • not to carry out a re-assessment of needs under section 44 CFA 2014 following a request to do so
  • not to secure the amendment or replacement of an EHC plan following a review or re-assessment under section 44 CFA 2014, or
  • to cease to maintain (or stop) an EHC plan under section 45 CFA 2014.

This means that you can mediate on and appeal a wide range of decisions, including in relation to placement (section I of an EHC plan) only.

We always advise anyone wanting to appeal placement only to seriously consider appealing sections B (special educational needs) and F (special educational provision) as well, as the contents of these sections influence decisions relating to section I.

For more information on this topic, see our main advice page on mediation