If your kid has special needs when it comes to their education, then a conventional education system may not be suitable for them. In this article, we will be reviewing how special schools can assist.
It’s always a huge responsibility to select a school for your kid, and if you happen to be a parent to one or more of the 1.2 million kids in the United Kingdom with an acknowledged special educational need or disability (SEND), the task becomes even more daunting.
Around 50% of kids with an EHC plan or SEN statement acquire their education in ordinary primary and secondary schools. Out of the remaining 50%, many go to a government-sponsored special school. So how do you determine where your kid will get the best possible and supportive education that meets their special needs?
What is a special school?
Special schools are institutions that offer education for kids with special educational needs or disabilities. The Education Development Officer at nasen, Alex Grady explains that there are various kinds of special schools, but generally, they are all meant to educate kids whose educational needs cannot be satisfied within a conventional environment, and whose carers and parents have requested or agreed to a special school placement for their child.
As of yet, around 2% of school-going kids attend a special school, with the huge majority having an EHC plan or statement. Kids who receive their education in special schools have shown to have a learning disability or difficulty which forces a special educational stipulation set up just for them.
Types of special schools
The kind of special school available is different from place to place. Some are independent; some are academies; some are state-maintained schools. Some schools offer admissions to kids from the ages of three to 19 (and sometimes up to 25 years), while others are exclusively secondary or primary. Alex continues to add that some places have ‘evaluation nurseries’ where kids go to while their specific needs are being reviewed, while others receive Early Years classes in their special school environment.
There are four broad kinds of special school the government recognises per their specialism:
-Mental, emotional and social health
-Sensory and physical needs
-Communication and interaction
-Cognition and learning
Alex explains that there some special institutions that are broad, and cater for an expansive range of special needs, which may include two or all of the four practice areas. Some focus on a certain area. What’s more, some special schools specialise above the mentioned categories and may cater for areas like autism or language and speech therapy.
You don’t necessarily have to choose between a mainstream or special school for your child’s education. Alex says that some conventional schools have special ‘resource bases’ or ‘units’ on site that enable kids with SEND to get specialist care and also have access to conventional resources and also get a chance to mingle with their peer group.
What can special schools provide that ordinary schools can’t?
One of the key distinctions between conventional and special schools is that special institutions have a high staff ratio because of the extra needs of the pupils. Special schools tend to have a high number of care assistants and teaching assistants to support teachers meet the care, health, and learning needs of the children. There are care jobs Hampshire.