Issue - meetings

Review of Special Educational Needs (SEN) - Post Consultation Report

Meeting: 27/07/2010 - Cabinet (Item 118)

118 Review of Special Educational Needs (SEN) - Post Consultation Report

Report by the Corporate Director of Children and Education

Supporting documents:


Public Participation:


Cllr Grundy responded to a written question from Mrs Ruth Greening (in her absence) concerning Springfields special school in Calne.


Mrs Deirdre Holland, volunteer parent supporter from Swindon, explained she was frequently contacted by Wiltshire authority residents for advice.  She raised her concerns about the risks of placing high-functioning autistic spectrum children within mainstream schools.


Mrs Naomi Irving expressed her concerns over schools which had a mix of children with Behaviour, Emotional and Social Difficulties (BESD) and Autistic Spectrum Disorders.


At the Deputy Leader’s invitation, Mr Trystan Williams, Headteacher of Springfields School, Calne addressed Cabinet on the above mentioned concerns. He explained that it was important to recognise the role that Springfield played and whilst he acknowledged the concerns expressed, the school’s results had been extremely positive. The aim of the school was to provide children with the best opportunities, for the best value.


Cllr Lionel Grundy, Cabinet Member for Children’s Services responded to the points made.




Cllr Grundy presented a comprehensive report which gave details of the outcome of the consultation on the Review of Special Educational Needs (SEN) Provision that was held from 22 February to 24 May 2010. He highlighted the high-profile nature and extended length of the consultation and the genuine attempt to respond to the needs of the community, which was necessary in a difficult and sensitive area of service provision.


The consultation was extensive and included the distribution of 3,000 consultation papers and questionnaires to parents, carers, head teachers, governors, SEN co-ordinators, neighbouring councils, the health service, trade unions, Diocesan bodies, MP’s and via the Council’s Area Boards and website.  An analysis of the responses was presented with the full details of responses made available to Councillors.


It was noted that the Council had a statutory duty to keep SEN provision under review. The review undertaken was primarily concerned with three mutually dependent areas of activity; namely:


  • Provision in Specialist Learning Centres (SLC’s)
  • Wiltshire Council SEN support services to schools and
  • Provision for pupils with SEN in mainstream schools.


The review also included some aspects of special school provision and Enhanced Learning Provision (ELP) in secondary schools. The review also sought to address the findings from the Joint Area Review carried out in 2008.


Cabinet was asked to consider the outcome of the review and responses to the consultation with a view to determining future provision based on the matters considered in the review.


Cllr Grundy added that following consultation it became clear that certain areas needed further consideration and would be subject to further specific consultation.


Cllr Jacqui Lay, Vice-Chair of the Children’s Select Committee spoke on behalf of Carole Soden, Chair of the Select Committee explained that the proposals had been the subject of a Rapid Scrutiny exercise, details of which were presented. The recommendations made to Cabinet had been endorsed by the Children’s Services Select Committee on 22 July 2010.


Cllr Grundy responded to the questions and queries from Councillors.




That Cabinet agree  ...  view the full minutes text for item 118