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(Ireland) "Desperate" mom on hunger strike" to get school place for autistic son

June 26, 2019, Irish Sun: DAIL PROTEST Desperate Dublin mum vows to refuse food until she gets school place for her autistic son https://www.thesun.ie/news/4257504/dublin-mum-nadine-staunton-hunger-strike-school-place-autistic-son/ A DISTRAUGHT mum-of-three has gone on hunger strike outside the Dail in a bid to get her autistic son into a special needs school. Nadine Staunton, 29, from North Kings Street, Dublin, has slammed the HSE after her lad Maddix was refused from up to nine schools because he didn’t have an “assessment of needs test” The north Dublin woman claimed her son was privately diagnosed with Asperger's syndrome but schools are still calling on her to get the autism test from the HSE, which has a waiting list of more than a year. Although Maddix was privately certified, specialist institutions are still demanding he be approved by the HSE. The single mum now fears her six-year-old son won’t have a school place in September, which he so desperately needs…. “The way it stands now my little boy has no school for September. He needs an autistic unit…. Despite getting her son diagnosed privately, Nadine said schools are still refusing to admit Maddix on the basis of her privately commissioned report, and instead insist on the assessment of needs test. Maddix, who will turn seven in August, is not toilet-trained and has struggled in a mainstream school, according to his mum…. “He soils himself. I need to speak out because I’m his voice. “I’m on hunger strike and I’m hoping to achieve to speak to someone in Dail.”… Desperate Nadine went on hunger strike outside Government Buildings at 1pm yesterday, and said she’s prepared to tough it out until she gets answers for her son. … Emotional Nadine also took aim at the Department of Education and said she’s received no help from them. Speaking from outside the Dail, she admitted: “I’ve got no help…. If Nadine can’t find a school that will accommodate her six-year-old son, she fears she’ll be left with no other option but to homeschool him…. “I’ve no school for my son. I have no services and there is nobody willing to help me with an autistic child…. The Department of Education last night told the Irish Sun: “The Government is spending nearly one euro in every five of the education budget on special education – about €1.9 billion in 2019. “We have significantly increased the availability of special placements for children with special educational needs. …