Special Educational Needs and Disabilities

A liberal country should support people to be able to live their lives as they wish. Key to this is ensuring access to good quality education, regardless of background.

Children and young people with additional needs need timely access to Education, Health and Care plans (EHCs). These lay out what is required to help those who need further support and are accessed via a service called SEND (Special Educational Needs and Disabilities).

SEND provision is a postcode lottery, with reduced funding and an increased contribution needed from individual schools to pay for it, at a time when schools are already under-funded.

Under this reckless Tory government, the lack of SEND provision means that less than half of those who applied for an EHC in 2022 received one in the target 20-week time period. Any delay means a delay in learning for a child, a delay in their growth, and a delay in them being able to live their life to the fullest.

The Liberal Democrats would create a National Body for SEND, with proper funding and monitoring of the spending to ensure each child gets the help they need from the start of their application. We also believe that schools should have to pay less towards EHCs, stopping the financial disincentive to identify needs to save costs.

Jenny supports high quality education for all, and will fight to ensure that those people who need the most support receive it, to give them an equal chance of good life outcomes.

A teacher and 8 students gathered around one table.

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