News | Published December 05 2018

Davington Primary's SEN concerns echoed in PMQs by Julie Cooper

Following a statement this week by Ofsted chief Amanda Spielman, Labour MP Julie Cooper raised concerns about the SEN provision in schools across the UK. This was an issue that was also focused on in the Education Edition of The Parliamentary Review by Davington Primary School, explaining that "SEN funding has been difficult for us, particularly given how tailored the interventions must be for some of our pupils".

Ofsted stated this week that the fact that many children were having their special educational needs undiagnosed, constituted a "national scandal" where far too many children had been "failed by education system". Based on a report by the Department for Education, there is a shortfall of around 300,000 students that are not receiving the support they need from the government.

  • Oftsed and MPs question SEN provision in schools
  • Davington primary criticise government funding for SEN students

Spielman said about the findings that "one child with SEND not receiving the help they need is disturbing enough, but thousands is a national scandal". The report also found that 93 per cent of SEND students were in state education with around 2,060 students having education, health and care plans, but were not in receipt of the support that they required.

Julie Cooper, the Labour MP for Burnley, said during PMQs today that according to Autism charity Ambitious About Autism, 60 per cent of students with Autism Spectrum Disorder are being excluded from mainstream education. She then echoed the concerns of Spielman, arguing that the issue constituted a "distressing problem".

Davington Primary School, based in Faversham, argued in their Parliamentary Review article that "one of our common areas of concern right now is special educational needs funding". Headteacher Chilton Saint said "There is no blanket solution to the problems afflicting pupils in this category, so focused efforts are necessary for their amelioration."

Davington Primary School is one of the oldest schools in the UK and they explained that the issue was  "out of our hands". He continued "What is in our hands is how we comport ourselves as a school, which for us entails the commitment to the children’s well-being. Doing so is not just an exercise in day care; its effects will have an enduring and formative impact on the children’s approach to education and life more generally. This is especially needed for areas with high pockets of deprivation, where not everyone is afforded the best opportunities in life"