The Isle of Wight Council has apologised — and must pay £3,250 — for the 'distress' caused to a mother and daughter over 'failings' to support learning.

In a recently published Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman (LGSCO) ruling, the watchdog said the council did not provide what it should have done to help the girl at school, through her Education Health and Care Plan (EHCP).

For months, the lack of intervention left her without support in handwriting, literacy and numeracy skills, as well as in building emotional understanding, said the report.

An Isle of Wight Council spokesperson said: "We take complaints about the services we provide very seriously and look to learn any lessons we can from the matters which go before the Ombudsman."

In her complaint to the LGSCO, the mother, referred to as Ms X, said the council's actions had caused avoidable distress and anxiety to both her and her daughter.

There were issues ensuring consistent support in school, from September 2022 through to March 2023, and Ms X called for a meeting on multiple occasions, as well as for an emergency EHCP review, which sets out a child's extra needs and necessary support arrangements.

The daughter's school said interventions had been taking place and it had been trying to recruit additional staff to help.

It said a consultant had observed the child and was satisfied she was making progress.

An EHCP review took place four months after one was first requested, by which point Ms X had already filed an official complaint with the council, the report said.

Ms X said the council had left her daughter struggling at school.

In its ruling, the LGSCO said although the council did have alternative measures in place, it did not secure all of the required services.

The LGSCO also found the council had delayed reviewing the EHCP and did not respond to Ms X in the statutory timeframe.

Following the LGSCO report, the Isle of Wight Council has agreed to review the family's provision, so it is in line with the EHCP.

It is also reminding staff of the statutory timeframes, when it comes to requesting an EHCP review.

Ms X told the LGSCO the impact of the council's actions was "extreme stress and anxiety".