***(UK) SCOTLAND:HORRIFIC, NUMBERS; officials see no problem

April 22, 2019, Scotland Herald: Number of pupils with special needs 'soaring' The number of pupils with additional support needs (ASN) has soared in the past six years, while funding and the amount of specialist teachers have fallen, new analysis indicates. The Scottish Children Services Coalition analysed the annual Scottish Government Pupil Census and found large increases in most categories of pupils requiring additional support. The number of pupils requiring support for mental health problems has more than tripled between 2012 and 2018, up 252 per cent. Those with communication support needs have increased by 293% in the same period, while pupils identified as having autism spectrum disorder have more than doubled, rising by 101%. Students needing help at school for physical health problems have risen by 98% in the six-year period, while those with social, emotional and behavioural difficulties have increased by 86%. Students with dyslexia have risen 60% and those requiring help with English as an additional language have more than doubled, up by 130%. All 24 categories record an increase between 2012 and 2018, apart from pupils requiring support for a learning disability which fell by 15%.... Overall, the number of pupils with additional support needs has risen by 69% between 2012 and 2018, from 118,034 to 199,065. Pupils with additional support needs now make up more than a quarter (29%) of all pupils. The commission said the increase is partially due to increased recognition and diagnosis of conditions, as well as improvements in recording, and this helps target support and funding. However, it highlighted drops in per-pupil funding and specialist teachers, and called for the necessary resources to be made available. The census figures indicate the number of full-time equivalent specialist teachers supporting ASN pupils has fallen by 403 between 2012 and 2018, from 3,840 to 3,437. Spending has fallen by an average of £883 per pupil between the £4,276 in 2013/13 to £3,393 in 2017/18 - a 27% cut in real terms…. A coalition spokesman said: "It is clearly positive to see that we are become increasingly good at identifying and recording those with ASN, such as autism, dyslexia, mental health problems and learning difficulties.