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(UK) Haringey Council slammed for ignoring special needs students

Nov 24, 2021, Ham and High (Hampstead/Highgate): Haringey Council SEND failures: 'Some parents are on antidepressants'

Near London

Haringey Council has been told that its poor treatment of families whose children have special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) has left some parents on antidepressants. The stark warning was made by a local parent carer who called the “culture” of ignoring SEND families an accumulation of “decades of failures”. Amanda Bernard’s comments were made to the council’s children and young people's scrutiny panel on Thursday (November 18). The meeting was held following an Ofsted report in October which published “serious concerns” over the local authority’s longstanding struggles with SEND services. … The Ofsted report described waiting times for autism assessments as “unacceptable” – in some cases took longer than two years. Education, health and care plans (EHCPs) were labelled “poor” and inspectors found a lack of partnership with parents. … “There are parents out there who are livid and stressed. That is then passed on to the children and young people, so it’s a vicious cycle.” Cllr Josh Dixon, a Liberal Democrat opposition member of the scrutiny panel, said: “Haringey Council’s continual failure to take account of the needs of SEND children and parents is abysmal. “Throughout my tenure as a councillor and a scrutiny panel member, parents have made the same points again and again, but no one in a position of power is willing to listen. These parents and young people deserve so much better than this. “Sadly, nothing l have seen leads me to think that Labour councillors, who have been running this failing service for decades, are ready to end their ‘we know best approach’ and finally engage with the people who understand this service best.” nnn “I understand why people are angry,” the Labour councillor said. “I understand and empathise with why people feel that bureaucracies often don’t listen to them. “It’s not always true because these are very complex circumstances and individuals will have different experiences. …


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