***(UK) NI sees $22M (US) shortfall in SPED spending; 'increased demand pressures'

Updated: Apr 12, 2019

Apr 11, 2019, Belfast News Letter: Education Authority overspends £13 million [$17M US dollars] on special needs provision The Education Authority (EA) has overspend of almost £17m [$22M US dollars] in 2017/18 was mainly due to spending on special needs, it has been revealed. Last year the EA, which is responsible for allocating money to NI schools, overspent by £19m [$25M US]. The head of the Northern Ireland Audit Office (NIAO) Kieran Donnelly said he was concerned and that urgent reforms are needed, the BBC reported. … Mr Donnelly said that paying for SEN support was the main reason for the body going over-budget…. “The EA stated that as budget allocations have essentially remained cash flat, it was unable to absorb in-year pay and price inflationary pressures and increased demand pressures,” said the NIAO….