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(UK) Oxfordshire: MORE special schools; MORE training for teachers

April 8, 2021, Oxford Mail: Special schools could be built in Oxfordshire under Government SEND review https://www.oxfordmail.co.uk/news/20056314.special-schools-built-oxfordshire-government-send-review/

S. central England MORE special schools could be built in Oxfordshire if Government reforms go ahead. The Government has published a Green Paper on the future of the special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) and alternative provision system, and is using a public consultation to seek views on the paper’s proposals. The SEND review is a ‘response to the widespread recognition that the system is failing to deliver for children, young people and their families’. The review proposes to establish a new national SEND and alternative provision system, which will set nationally consistent standards for how needs are identified and met at every stage of a child’s journey across education, health and care. This could see an additional £1 billion [$1.3B] invested in the school budget in 2022 to 2023, to support children and young people with the most complex needs. The proposals were discussed at Oxfordshire County Council’s people overview and scrutiny committee after being outlined to councillors by Kevin Gordon, the council’s corporate director for children’s services. Mr Gordon said at the meeting: “It’s really important and helpful that this committee gets early sight of these changes. “Needs for children should be met in mainstream schools where possible. “Alternative provision is in a bit of disarray nationally – I think we have strong partnerships in Oxfordshire.” The council ran its own SEND consultation earlier this year, and Mr Gordon said: “One of our reforms with the SEND consultation was to increase the amount of resource bases in Oxfordshire – specialised units part of the mainstream schools. “This [Green Paper] provides a funding rate for us to do this and to build specialist schools in the county. “As part of our SEND reforms, we are very committed to increasing the skill base of all our teachers.” The council’s deputy leader, Liz Brighouse, said: “There are some children that need more of the resources we have, in order for them to be included and to thrive. “We need more special schools and places for alternative provision.” Under the Government SEND review, there is a plan that by 2030, all children will be taught in a family of schools or trust….


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