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teather calls for special educational needs ‘overhaul’

14 September 2010

The children’s minister Sarah Teather is seeking input for a green paper from parents, teachers, charities and Local Authorities (LA’s) on SEN assessments, calling the current system ‘adversarial’ and in need of change.

The paper will discuss how to identify children’s needs earlier, develop fairer and more transparent funding arrangements, streamline assessments and ensure parents have their say and are more involved at every stage.

The Lamb Report recently identified areas where parental confidence could be improved, but stopped short of a recommendation of an overhaul of the current system for statutory assessments.

However, the new government wants children diagnosed earlier whilst at the same time sweeping cuts in LEA budgets are about to be identified. In that context LAs may soon feel the strain of providing assessments, statements and sufficient support for children and their parents. Hopefully the green paper will address these tricky issues.

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Mark Blois

Mark Blois

Partner and Head of Education

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