Let’s reframe our approach to special educational needs

While the 2014 SEND code of practice was meant to bring clarity and structure to support for students, Louise Connolly believes it has simply created new problems – but Scotland could show the way forward

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Alice’s SEND seemed to have disappeared. At her previous school, situated in a tiny village, she had been on the special educational needs and disability register for two years, under the category of “cognition and learning”. But at her new school – a large academy based in one of the top 10 per cent of deprived neighbourhoods in the country, and where the proportion of disadvantaged children is well above average – her mother was told that she would not be placed on the register. Based on assessments, she was no longer deemed to have SEND.

Where had Alice’s SEND gone? Had it miraculously ...

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