Applying to use dispute resolution

How to make an application

To make an application please note the following:

  • the application must be in writing (a standard form is available to help you with this part of the process)
  • it must contain the name and address of the applicant and the name and address of the child or young person who is the subject of the application
  • the matter that is in dispute
  • a summary of the circumstances giving rise to the application
  • copies of all relevant documents
  • the grounds by reference to the provisions of the Education (Additional Support for Learning) (Scotland)Act 2004 (Amended 2009)
  • how you would like the matter to be resolved
  • any views of the child or young person

What happens next?

Stage 1

The Education Authority will consider the application, and if satisfied that it relates to an appropriate matter under the Act, and that all relevant material has been supplied, you will receive confirmation of acceptance within 10 working days.

The authority will at the same time notify the Scottish Government who will nominate an independent adjudicator. (If not accepted you will also be notified within10 working days, together with the reasons. In such circumstances you can supply further informationor material).

Stage 2

Within 10 working days of the end of stage 1, the authority will send you:

  • a written summary of the authority’s view on the circumstance giving rise to the application
  • a written summary of the authority’s view on the application itself and the supporting material
  • any other relevant information
  • a statement of the authority’s view on how the mattercan be resolved

Stage 3

There are then a further 10 working days for the applicant and the authority to provide each other with further observations.

Stage 4

The authority has a total of 25 working days from the end of Stage 1 to send all papers to the external adjudicator.

Stage 5

The adjudicator then has a further 15 working days fromreceipt of the papers to make a recommendation on how the dispute might be resolved. At the same time, the adjudicator will notify the applicant that a report has beensent to the authority.

Stage 6

The authority must within 10 working days of receipt ofthe adjudicator’s report give notice of their decision to the applicant.

This notice must set out:

  • the facts on which their decision is based
  • the reasons for the decision
  • any reasons for not following there commendations
  • views on the effect of the decision on the child or young person

The authority will also provide a copy of the adjudicator’s report.

If the authority does not accept the adjudicator’s report and recommendations, you will be offered a meeting withan officer of the authority.

Repeat submissions

An application in respect of the same matter or decision cannot be submitted within 12 months of the end of Stage 1.

Further information

We have produced a range of information leaflets on this and other issues related to children’s education. 

Further steps

In certain circumstances it may be possible to refer a matter where there is still disagreement to the Scottish Ministers, or for judicial review or to the Scottish Public Services Ombudsman.

If you need help to make an application please contact us.

Contact Information

Psychological Services
Civic Centre South
16 John Dickie Street
East Ayrshire
Telephone: 01563 555640
Scottish Public Services Ombudsman
Telephone: 0800 377 7330
Fax: 0800 377 7331
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