• SEND review won't be out until 2021, says Williamson

    A landmark review into provision for children with special educational needs and disabilities won’t be published until next year, Gavin Williamson has said. The education secretary admitted in April that work on the review has stalled because of the coronavirus outbreak, and confirmed today that the report will now not be published until “the early

    13.36 Sep. 16th, 2020 | News

  • Ofsted's autumn SEND 'visits' could prompt school inspections

    Inspections of local area SEND provision could prompt emergency visits to individual schools if “serious concerns” emerge, Ofsted has said. In July it was announced that full SEND inspections, normally conducted across whole council areas by Ofsted and the Care Quality Commission, would not go ahead in the autumn. Interim visits would be carried out

    5.00 Sep. 12th, 2020 | News

  • No joint SEND inspections in the autumn, but Ofsted and CQC will still 'visit' areas

    Joint area SEND inspections will not resume in the autumn term, Ofsted has announced. But the watchdog and the Care Quality Commission will conduct “a series of visits” to council areas to understand the impact of the coronavirus pandemic and support local areas to “respond effectively”. The inspectorate will also produce a new area SEND

    12.39 Jul. 9th, 2020 | News

  • Government faces legal challenge over emergency SEND powers

    The government is facing a legal challenge after temporarily “relaxing” the duty of councils to provide support for SEND pupils during the coronavirus outbreak. A notice at the end of April told councils they would only need to show “reasonable endeavours” to fulfill their duty in pupils’ education, health and care plans (EHCPs) during May.

    5.00 May. 16th, 2020 | News

  • DfE reports 10% rise in number of EHC plans

    The number of pupils with education, health and care plans increased by 10 per cent in the past year, the Department for Education has said. The latest data shows there were 390,109 pupils with an EHC plan as of January 2020, up from 353,995 at the same point in 2019. However, at the same time,

    10.21 May. 7th, 2020 | News

  • Coronavirus: Legal challenges 'certain' over SEND rule changes

    New emergency powers that “relax” requirements on councils to provide support for SEND pupils will “most certainly” lead to legal challenges, lawyers have warned. The proposed coronavirus bill states councils won’t be penalised for failing to provide support outlined in pupils’ education, health and care plans (EHCPs) as long as they show “reasonable endeavours” to

    5.00 Mar. 28th, 2020 | News

  • Coronavirus: Children's minister claims relaxing SEND support rules 'strikes right balance'

    New emergency powers that “relax” requirements on councils to provide support for SEND pupils “strike the right balance in difficult times”, the government has said. The proposed coronavirus bill states councils won’t be penalised for failing to provide support outlined in pupils’ education, health and care plans (EHCPs) as long as they show “reasonable endeavours”

    17.13 Mar. 24th, 2020 | News

  • Ministers reject nine in 10 council bids to prop up high needs budget

    Councils have warned of soaring deficits and diminishing support for vulnerable pupils after ministers rejected nine in 10 bids to shore up high needs budgets with general school funds. The local councils of both education secretary Gavin Williamson and schools minister Nick Gibb are among 22 local authorities denied permission by Williamson to move cash

    11.02 Mar. 13th, 2020 | News

  • Trial to investigate if 'activity passport' boosts attainment

    More than 100 primary schools are wanted to take part in a new trial to find out if enrichment activities, like visiting museums, boost attainment. The Children’s University trial will see 3,000 nine and 10-year-olds in England fill in a “Passport to Learning” when they complete activities such as performing arts classes, sports clubs and

    0.01 Oct. 9th, 2019 | News

  • Ofsted accused of legal breach over lack of SEND consultations

    Ofsted is facing accusations it breached equality laws after failing to consult any special needs organisations on its new framework before its finalised plans went out to public consultation. The inspectorate also neglected to include any SEND-specific research in the 321 sources of analysis to help shape the framework, Schools Week can reveal. They rejected

    5.00 Oct. 4th, 2019 | News

  • 'Shocking failure of SEND system' highlighted in damning NAO report

    The government’s own auditor has revealed that insufficient funding and severely stretched council budgets have left pupils with special education needs and disabilities (SEND) without the support they need. Campaigners say the findings reveal a “shocking failure” of the SEND system. The National Audit Office (NAO) report also reveals that local authorities’ spending on independent

    0.01 Sep. 11th, 2019 | News