BROMLEY Council made serious failings with a teenager’s special education needs, the local government ombudsman has ruled.

In her report Dr Jane Martin recommends the council pays a total of £7,000 to the boy, who is named as N, and his mother Miss Peters because of its failures.

N has selective mutism and severe anxiety so has a statement documenting his special education needs (SEN).

But Dr Martin found the council failed to put all the required elements of the statement in place.

It failed to provide speech and language therapy for N for 12 months and failed to provide a key worker for him for 10 months.

The ombudsman’s investigation also found the council had also delayed issuing a final SEN statement by 15 months after issuing the draft version.

This meant his mother was unable to complain to a tribunal against the council’s decision and caused him avoidable uncertainty and distress.

Dr Martin said: “The council’s failures caused unnecessary additional uncertainty that contributed to N’s anxieties and absences from school and reduced his choices at post-16.”

This complaint by Miss Peters is the third time she has had a complaint upheld by the ombudsman, a fact Dr Martin acknowledged in setting the council’s recommended payment amount.

She said: “I consider the council should pay Miss Peters £1,500 for the stress and unnecessary uncertainty caused by its actions.

“In view of the fact this was the third time his mother has had to approach the ombudsman following failings by the council, I consider the council should pay her £1,500 for the justifiable outrage its actions caused her.

“I consider it should also pay her £500 for the time and trouble it caused her in having to approach the ombudsman for a third time.”

And she recommends the council pay £3,500 to boy N.

A Bromley Council spokesman said: “We have sent a letter of apology to the family and will be sending the payment out shortly.”