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***(UK) Yorkshire can't afford "rising demand" from disabled kids

Feb 2, 2019, Yorkshire Post: Warning over Yorkshire ‘underfunding’ for special needs children https://www.yorkshirepost.co.uk/news/education/warning-over-yorkshire-underfunding-for-special-needs-children-1-9571935 Vulnerable young people are facing the impact of “significant” underfunding in special needs support, executives warn, as families face lengthy delays for crucial care plans. In some parts of the region, The Yorkshire Post reveals, nearly 80 per cent of education, health and care plans for special needs children have been delayed beyond deadline limits. As families today share their personal stories of the impact on the most vulnerable, executives at some of the region’s biggest authorities acknowledge ongoing delays are “unacceptable”. … Education, health and care (EHC) plans, which outline what support a child is legally entitled to, are a fundamental aspect of ensuring support in schools for young people with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND). But across the region, analysis reveals, 40 per cent of families face delays, a figure doubled in some areas as councils struggle to meet rising demand. Since changes to the law in 2014, increasing bodies’ responsibility to include young people up to the age of 25, there has been a huge rise in the number seeking support. But, say local councils, there has been no additional funding to meet this need. … The ambition for SEND children is exactly the same as for any other child – to “achieve well in education, and go on to live happy and fulfilled lives”, Minister for Children and Families Nadhim Zahawi said. … He said: “That is why we have provided an extra £250m [$330M US dollars] in high needs funding across this year and the next, on top of the increases we had already promised.” The funds – £24.3m [$32M US] for Yorkshire and the Humber – will go “some way” to helping councils manage, he said. …