Schools Act woe for Scottish councils

Councils could be faced with a bill of up to £120m per year in
order to include children with special educational needs in
mainstream schools, according to a recent Audit Scotland

Section 15 of the Standards in Scotland’s Schools Act 2000
requires, where possible, children with SEN to be educated in
mainstream schools. To fulfil this, councils must invest to make
schools accessible, employ and train extra staff and provide NHS
therapy services.

But the report highlights that when section 15 was added to the
bill, the financial memorandum that accompanied it was not

Last week, the president of the Educational Institute of Scotland
-Êa teaching union – said that some parents were being forced
to place children with SEN in mainstream schools against their

“There are parents who prefer their children to be taught in
special schools because they appreciate the exceptional work being
done in these schools,” said Alana Ross at the union’s annual
general meeting in Perth.

However, the Scottish executive announced last month that the
forthcoming Education (Additional Support for Learning) (Scotland)
Bill would strengthen rights for parents and pupils and allow
parents of children with additional support needs to request a
place for their child in a special school. 

– Report available from

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