Call for action on special academies

18th February 2011 at 00:00

Your article "SEN schools take 'leap of faith' with academy bids" (11 February) demands decisive and determined action by the Department for Education on two inextricably intertwined issues.

Firstly, admission criteria to special academies must be made clear and reserved for those pupils who have the most severe and complex learning needs. Such pupils are unlikely to profit from the mainstream school curriculum and are, therefore, those for whom separate specialist school placements must be made available if requested.

Secondly, a national funding formula must be established (in addition to the pupil premium) for special academies. Funding must be aligned to the real and increasingly expensive costs of meeting the needs of pupils with severe and complex learning difficulties. The funding arrangements must be simple, transparent and calculated to cover all costs.

Before special academies are to benefit from new freedoms they will first require a little more certainty than that brought about by free market forces.

Ron Babbage, Headteacher, St John's Foundation Special School amp; College, Bedford.

Subscribe to get access to the content on this page.

If you are already a Tes/ Tes Scotland subscriber please log in with your username or email address to get full access to our back issues, CPD library and membership plus page.

Not a subscriber? Find out more about our subscription offers.
Subscribe now
Existing subscriber?
Enter subscription number

Comments

The guide by your side – ensuring you are always up to date with the latest in education.

Get Tes magazine online and delivered to your door. Stay up to date with the latest research, teacher innovation and insight, plus classroom tips and techniques with a Tes magazine subscription.
With a Tes magazine subscription you get exclusive access to our CPD library. Including our New Teachers’ special for NQTS, Ed Tech, How to Get a Job, Trip Planner, Ed Biz Special and all Tes back issues.

Subscribe now