Extra cash is key

13th July 2001 at 01:00
Few teachers will have been surprised by the figures showing the growth in the numbers of children with special needs in schools ("Hot Data", TES, July 6). However, given the supposed emphasis on early intervention, many will be disturbed that there continues to be almost twice as many pupils with statements at secondary level than at primary.

This disparity is of particular concern to first school teachers like myself who identify children with special needs in the early years, yet see children progress through the system without proper support or therapy. Their problems become more entrenched as they grow older, and statements may be provided only when the problem has become intractable.

It is time for the Government to practise rather than preach early intervention and give local authorities additional finances to make appropriate provision for children with special needs.

Christine Lees 13 Islestone Court Berwick-upon-Tweed

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