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(UK) Belfast students with ASD lack school places; 'Demand for places was high'

May 28, 2020, BBC News: Belfast Met: Young people with special needs to miss out on place About 100 young people with special educational needs are set to miss out on a further education place in Belfast this year. Belfast Met said it had only 66 places for 166 people who want to study at its Centre for Supported Learning…. The Centre for Supported Learning educates young people with special educational needs (SEN) who are making the transition between school and work. It takes pupils from a number of special schools and courses include placements with employers. In a statement to BBC News NI, Belfast Met said the education offered by the centre had been rated as outstanding and demand for places was high. … 'Massively oversubscribed' Belfast Met said there had been no reduction in places on the centre's courses due to the coronavirus pandemic. But one mother of a girl who has applied to the centre told BBC News NI they did know what they would do if she did not get a place. "My 16-year-old daughter with an autism spectrum diagnosis has already changed school four times since P1, only one of those through choice due to unsuitable provision," she said…. 'Increases disadvantage' Pauline Leeson, chief executive of the umbrella body Children in Northern Ireland, said the lack of places at colleges for those young people meant their full potential remained to be realised. "Put quite simply there isn't enough money in the system to ensure the needs of young people with SEN are met," she said….


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