(Canada) BC: Kids sent home when no paras available

Nov 24, 2017, (Canada) Fernie (B.C.) Free Press: Study shows special needs hard to meet in B.C. public schools Dunn-Reker was one of the local parents in the Elk Valley who completed a recent survey by the B.C. Federation of Parent Advisory Councils on special needs assistance in schools. This survey found that in some districts children are being sent home when there are no EAs (Educational Assistants) available to work with them. In addition, 40 per cent of the parents who filled out the survey said their children with special needs were being sent home on a regular basis due to behavioural issues. That’s not an experience that Dunn-Reker shared, but she says that she removed her son from the public school system in the Elk Valley because his needs were not being met. She says after numerous incidents, issues with communication and anxiety; the best option would be to pull him out of the system. “They didn’t know how to handle him in a classroom situation,” said Dunn-Reker. Sean is unable to learn in a sit-down environment all day. In that setup he was prone to autistic episodes. As a result, he spent much of his time wandering up and down the halls in the school. She says the school requested that Sean be prescribed medications for anxiety and ADHD to help with focusing in the classroom. Dunn-Reker says one major problem was that once Sean turned six, he no longer received funding for a behavioural interventionist, who helps children with autism develop life skills and coping strategies for anxiety.

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