Independent Parental Special Education Advice (IPSEA)
IPSEA is a registered charity (number 327691) offering free, independent, legally based information, advice and support to help families get the right education for children and young people with all kinds of special educational needs and/or disability. They cover the whole of England (the law is different in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland).
IPSEA’s website has hundreds of free and downloadable resources. You can access these resources via their Home page. They have model letters, frequently asked questions, a jargon buster and lots more.
The following free services are delivered by IPSEA's trained volunteers:
INFORMATION SERVICE: By completing the online Information Service form, you will get a quick response clarifying your legal position, signposting you to help.
ADVICE LINE: This provides next step advice on: problems with schools, requesting statutory assessment, statements and Education, Health and Care Plans, annual reviews, disability discrimination and exclusion. Please click here for IPSEA's Advice Line number and opening times - plus details on how to book an appointment for getting one of IPSEA’s advisers to call you.
TRIBUNAL HELPLINE: Gives next step advice on SEN appeals and disability discrimination claims to the Special Educational Needs and Disability Tribunal. When you call IPSEA will also assess whether you need casework support. Please click here for IPSEA's Tribunal Helpline number and opening times plus details on how to book an appointment for getting one of their advisers to call you back.
TRIBUNAL SUPPORT: IPSEA’s Tribunal Casework Volunteers provide free individual support to families appealing to the Special Educational Needs and Disability Tribunal. This unique service can only be accessed by calling the Tribunal Helpline. If IPSEA’s assessment is that you need this support, it will be provided throughout the Tribunal process - including representation at a hearing if needed. Their casework volunteers work with parents to empower them to obtain the best possible result from their appeal.
Click here to join IPSEA’s mailing list so that you can receive relevant updates and information.
IPSEA provides a wide range of SEN training for Parents, School Staff, Parent Forums, Support Groups, Local Authority SEN teams, Parent Partnership Schemes, School Governors and other groups / organisations. Click here for details.
Volunteering with IPSEA
If you are interested in completing IPSEA’s rigorous and free training to provide voluntary advice and support based on the law, you can read more here.
Who to contact
Parents & Professionals Helpline: 0800 018 4016
SEN Tribunal Helpline: 0845 602 9579
Administration: 01799 582030 (during office hours only)
Where to go
- Independent Panel for Special Educational Advice
- CB11 4AA