top of page

(UK) N. Yorkshire: 110 percent increase in number of autistic students in 7 years

May 30, 2023, Your Harrogate: Plans for new Harrogate school for children with autism move forward

N. England

North Yorkshire County Council is set to consult on a proposal to open a school for children with autism at the site of the former Woodfield Community Primary School in Harrogate.

Councillors agreed earlier this week to further explore the proposed project, which would provide school places for children and young people with autism in North Yorkshire.

A total of £3.5 million [$4.4M] has been earmarked to allow potential upgrading of the site to enable it to cater for up to 80 pupils with autism aged between 11 and 19.

The decision comes as children and young people in North Yorkshire with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) are set to benefit from a £20 million [$25M] investment, which includes the creation of new places in Special Schools and mainstream SEN Resource Bases.

The Council says since 2016, the number of children and young people with identified SEND and an education, health and care plan (EHCP) has increased by over 110 per cent in North Yorkshire. As this trend continues, it is estimated that an additional capacity of 350 SEND school places will be required to be developed over the next three to five years….

Welcoming the decision, executive member for education, learning and skills, Cllr Annabel Wilkinson, said:

“I’m delighted that the council is to explore this proposal. The new facility would help meet a rising demand for special school places in Harrogate, Knaresborough, Ripon and the surrounding area.

“Currently there are 432 children with the primary need of autism accessing existing North Yorkshire special schools and we are committed to providing further support.

“This would provide children and families with a more local offer of provision than is currently available without significant travel.”…


bottom of page