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(Ireland) Dozens of students with ASD still have no school place for fall

Aug 21, 2022, RTE: Autism charity urges Dept to confirm school places https://www.rte.ie/news/education/2022/0821/1316969-school-places-warning/
The CEO of the autism charity AsIAm has warned that dozens of children still do not know where they will be going to school in September.

Adam Harris told RTÉ Radio 1's This Week programme that while there has been progress in recent weeks, the charity believes "over 100 students" at primary and secondary school do not have a school place for September.

"That's a source of great anxiety for many families. Every child needs to prepare but particularly for our children that preparation is so important".

In a statement to the programme, the Department of Education said that it "understands from the National Council for Special Education (NCSE) that 1,789 primary and 738 post-primary special classes have been sanctioned for the coming school year 2022/2023".

It added that the NCSE "believes that these new classes and special school places will now provide the necessary places to meet the level of demand for this September".

Mr Harris said that the statement indicates that the proposed temporary use of "Special Education Centres" will not p

roceed….

He also pointed out that while some children may have received a place in school for the coming academic year, it doesn't necessarily mean that there is an "appropriate" school place.

"We have a whole journey to travel before we make our system inclusive."

He told the programme that the provision of support staff was lacking in some schools and many children also had to travel significant distances to go to school.