(UK) Kirklees: Rising number of SPED kids being kicked out of school is 'alarming'

Aug 1, 2018,Huddersfield Daily Examiner: Children with special needs in Kirklees are far more likely to be expelled from school Secondary school pupils in Kirklees are six times more likely to be permanently excluded if they have special needs, exclusive analysis has revealed. An increasing number of children across the country are being unnecessarily excluded from school and abandoned with an inadequate education, a report by the House of Commons’ Education Committee recently concluded. In particular, the report highlighted that children who were already the most vulnerable – such as children with special educational needs (SEN), children in care and children living in poverty – are the most likely to be excluded. An investigation into the latest government figures by the Examiner has shown that this is very much the case in our local schools…. SEN pupils are also three times more likely to be excluded for a fixed period – in other words ‘suspended’ – at least once. … Anne Longfield, the Children’s Commissioner for England, said the figures suggested some schools were “seeking to improve their overall exam results by removing some of their most vulnerable children from the school roll.” But teachers’ unions and charity bosses said it was government cuts in support services that were chiefly to blame…. Dr Martyn Walker, Principal Research Fellow at the University’s School of Education and Professional Development, has been analysing data on the rising number of exclusions from primary and secondary schools…. “The rise in the number of children with special educational needs and disability who are being excluded is alarming. They are seven times more likely to be permanently excluded.”… “Yet the steep increase in exclusions comes as schools struggle to provide appropriate support for pupils that could enable them to retain their school place. ‘This often means children with behavioural problems, mental health issues or special educational needs and disabilities may be placed in alternative provision that doesn’t work for them.”… “This is an area where prevention is better than cure, but school budgets are at breaking point so many of the measures that schools take to ensure good behaviour and adequate support for pupils are under threat….