Exciting new plans for children with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities

Child hand drawing

Exciting new plans for children with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) are to be discussed by the members of Kirklees Cabinet.

The proposals are based on investing in local education and increasing the amount of SEND support in the district’s mainstream schools.

Many pupils with additional learning needs can make better, more sustained progress when they attend a mainstream setting, so the council is looking to provide targeted and specialist support for those who need it.

Proposals include new ‘Additionally Resourced Provisions’ at a range of existing schools across Kirklees. They would be for children and young people with: Complex Communication and Interaction Needs; Social, Emotional and Mental Health Needs; and Cognition and Learning Needs.

The council has chosen to carry out a consultation and seek feedback on the plan, especially from families who are affected by SEND.

After the consultation has ended, Cabinet members will decide whether to move ahead to the next stage. This would see the publication of legal notices and another chance for people to have their say.

It has also been confirmed that the council is receiving a further £8.2million in government funding to support its work in transforming SEND services for children and young people. This builds on the £33.5million secured earlier in 2022.

Cllr Carole Pattison, Cabinet member for Learning, Aspiration and Communities, said:

“The way we are transforming SEND services will improve the lives of children, young people and families across Kirklees.

“It is an absolute priority that we support children with additional needs. We want to improve outcomes, overcome barriers and help them to fulfil their potential.

“We have already agreed an investment of around £36million to create superb new special school facilities for the district. These latest proposals show we are committed to expanding other specialist provision, in line with the growing need, so that more young people can access the place that’s right for them.”

Cllr Viv Kendrick, Cabinet member for Children, said:

“We already have some very successful Additionally Resourced Provisions in our mainstream schools. Now we are looking to increase both the amount and the geographical spread.

“We have worked in partnership with the Kirklees family of schools in developing these plans and we know there are more schools keen to host this kind of provision in the future.

“The current consultation process is really important because we always want to work alongside our children and families in developing new forms of support. Our goal is to tackle inequalities for our vulnerable learners and enhance their life opportunities.”

The consultation on Additionally Resourced Provisions is open until July 22nd. Anyone can have their say and full details are available on our school organisation and planning web page.

Cabinet members will consider the proposals at their meeting on July 26th. The full report can be viewed on the council website.