Discrimination still common in schools

One in three disabled children are still being treated unfairly in
the education system despite recent laws to prevent discrimination,
according to new research.

The survey of disabled children’s parents, launched last week by
charity Contact a Family, finds that despite the Special
Educational Needs and Disability Act 2001 coming into force in
September to strengthen the rights of disabled children in schools,
discrimination is still occurring.

The findings, based on almost 1,700 responses to a web-based survey
in January, reveals that more than a third of parents do not
believe their child gets the extra help that they require at
school. A similar number of parents were unaware of the new

Meanwhile, a report on schools’ views of their local education
authorities, published last week by the Audit Commission, reveals
that many feel the effectiveness of LEAs’ support for pupils with
special educational needs required vast improvement.

A particular problem was found to be “the efficiency with which
statutory assessments of pupils with SEN are made”, with 37 per
cent of the 7,430 head teachers who responded rating it as below

Family Education Survey from www.cafamily.org.uk/edsurvey.html
and Schools’ Views of their LEAs 2002 from www.audit-commission.gov.uk

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