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(UK) Abuse charges against Dunstable school's autism unit

Dec 19, 2018, Dunstable Today: Police inquiry at Dunstable’s Ardley Hill Academy after parents slam school’s autism unit A Dunstable school’s autism unit has been slammed by parents, who claim a child was “thrown” to the floor by a member of staff. Ardley Hill Academy, Lowther Road, has come under fire from parents, who have written to Andrew Selous MP with a number of safeguarding concerns about the school. Some of the parents have children who attend its unit, a class which caters for children with autistic spectrum disorder, and say that over the last few weeks things have “come to a head”, with the council recently conducting a safeguarding investigation and Bedfordshire Police also investigating the allegation of assault. In the letter to Andrew Selous, it is claimed: “Parents of the children in the Autism Provision have had concerns about the unit for a long time, both in terms of its safety and effectiveness. “A safeguarding investigation was started when parents raised concerns about the fact that staff were shutting the children in a tiny room - known by the children as ‘the cupboard of hell’. “They were doing this when the children were having a meltdown. This action only escalated their anxiety and frankly, has probably psychologically damaged all of them. “One parent removed their son from the school on November 21, when the child had to be locked in an office all afternoon for his own safety. … The letter also alleged that worrying “incidents” happen on a daily basis; for example, it claimed that a child was “strangled and hit by another child” and that the staff were unaware until the injured child ran inside to seek help. …

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