Schools need to work more closely with social care services to ensure children with complex and severe special needs receive support, according to an Ofsted report.
“Too much effort is going into simply checking that extra services are being provided,” said Ofsted’s chief inspector, Christine Gilbert. “Education, health and social care services should be focused on the quality of what they are doing, and how well young people are doing as a result.”
Inspectors reported that many pupils would not even be identified as having special educational needs if schools focused on improving teaching.
The review recommends that, if a child or young person is underachieving, schools should start by analysing the effectiveness of mainstream teaching and support rather than automatically statementing the pupil.
“With more than one in five children of school age in England identified as having special educational needs, it is vital that the way they are identified and the support they receive work in the best interests of the children involved,” said Gilbert.
Inspectors said the best schools understood how to help young people become self-reliant and independent.
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