This includes having your say in decisions made about extra support you may need at school. You should be listened to, treated fairly and have your views respected and taken seriously.
It’s not always easy to speak up at school, but having your say can help make sure that things work out better for you.
If you feel like you need help to have your say, an advocate can help you.
An advocate (also called an advocacy worker) can go with you to meetings about your learning and support, help you work out what you want to say and speak for you if you want them to. They can make sure your rights are looked after and that your views and wishes are fully listened to when decisions are made. Your school, parents or carers will be able to help you find an advocate.
Here’s what a couple of young people said about the difference it made having an advocate at their school –
[The teachers] were listening. It’s much better now. I feel better. I can speak in meetings.
I felt like you being there and supporting me definitely made them listen.
If you’re aged 12 – 15 and want help to use your rights and have a say, contact the service My Rights, My Say.
My Rights, My Say can help you if:
- you want to find out more about using your rights
- your school or local council are checking whether it’s ok for you to use your rights
- you’ve asked your school or local council to find out if you need extra support or a Co-ordinated Support Plan
- you don’t think your school or local council are listening to your views
- you have asked for help to sort out a disagreement with the school.
If you’ve asked the Additional Support Needs Tribunal to look into a disagreement with your school or local council you might need someone who knows all about the law to act on your behalf. This is called ‘legal representation’. Staff from My Rights, My Say can do this for you.