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Mother's heartache at eight-month-long battle to get autistic son into specialist school

PUBLISHED: 17:05 14 May 2019 | UPDATED: 17:05 14 May 2019

Rebecca Jeckells, 33, from Caister with her five-year-old son Lucas who has autism. Picture: Submitted

Rebecca Jeckells, 33, from Caister with her five-year-old son Lucas who has autism. Picture: Submitted

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A mother-of-one who has become embroiled in an eight month battle to get her autistic son's education moved says she is "disgusted" by the way she has been treated by a Norfolk primary school.

Lucas enjoys spending time visiting and petting animals when he isn't at school. Picture: SubmittedLucas enjoys spending time visiting and petting animals when he isn't at school. Picture: Submitted

Rebecca Jeckells, 33, from Caister, has been waiting since June 2017 for Caister Infant School to send documents which would allow her five-year-old son's level of support to be assessed by experts.

Although the school has now submitted Lucas' - her son's - education, health and care plan (EHCP) to Norfolk County Council, the family will have to wait another couple of weeks before the case is looked at.

Mrs Jeckells believes John Grant - a school which specialises in looking after children with learning difficulties - in Caister, would be the ideal place to send Lucas, but until he has been assessed she is unable to move him.

Mrs Jeckells said: "It was hard enough for us as a family to come to terms with his autism, let alone having to put up with this from the school.

Caister infant school. Picture: Google MapsCaister infant school. Picture: Google Maps

"I am disgusted by the way I have been treated by them.

"John Grant just feels as though it was made for my son.

"I just want to make sure he gets the best help possible."

Having initially been pleased with how Lucas was getting on when he started at Caister nursery school in 2017, Mrs Jeckells arranged for her son to enrol at the adjoining infant school in September 2018.

Mrs Jeckells said she is Mrs Jeckells said she is "disgusted" by the way she has been treated by Caister infant school as she tries to get her son transferred schools. Picture: Submitted

She was reassured staff members would be able to provide Lucas with all the support necessary, however, she began having doubts when she was told her son would start off with a reduced timetable of two days.

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The 33-year-old then became increasingly concerned when she was made aware Lucas was getting involved in fights at break and lunch times because he wasn't being supervised properly.

"There are days when Lucas will come home with tears in his eyes which is heartbreaking," Mrs Jeckells said.

"He has been unsettled from the start because of the way the school has dealt with this."

Despite numerous meetings and reassurances that her son is receiving the best support possible, Mrs Jeckells believes not enough is being done to help Lucas.

In a statement, Caister Infant School said: "We are unable to comment on individual pupils. However, our school has no outstanding education and health care plans and has a strong track record of supporting all of our pupils, including those with additional needs."

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