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(UK) E.London: Special school expands to meet "growing demand"

Jan 9, 2020, Guardian: New Rush Hall school to increase capacity https://www.guardian-series.co.uk/news/18148121.new-rush-hall-school-increase-capacity/ A special needs school has welcomed plans to increase its capacity in the face of growing demand. New Rush Hall school, in Fencepiece Road, Fairlop, will be expanded from 64 places to 80 after Redbridge Council gave plans the green light on Tuesday, January 7. The school – rated outstanding by Ofsted in 2016 – is a specialist school for children and young people experiencing significant social, emotional, behavioural and/or mental health difficulties. Executive headteacher, Sam Walters, welcomed the news, saying the demand for places had greatly risen in recent years. He said: “There has been a huge increase in the number of young people needing EHC plans, particularly for social and mental health needs, has naturally meant that there are not enough appropriate school place to meet the populaces needs.” … Since 2014, the number of Redbridge resident pupils with an EHC plan has risen approximately 35 per cent. Council officials estimate the borough’s special educational needs and disability (SEND) pupil population will grow by 16.5 per cent (153 school places) for primary education and 33.7 per cent (248 places) for secondary by 2025. As a result, the council is looking to create 140 new SEND places borough-wide by 2023. All 16 of the created New Rush Hall spaces will be primary spots for younger children, effective from September 1, 2020. Mr Walters insisted the new spaces were necessary to ensure young people did not have to travel for hours to go to school. …