Have you noticed?

14th September 2001 at 01:00
Do governors really want more delegated funds - and yet more responsibilities?

Over the next two years, our local education authority will have to delegate money now held centrally to fund children's statements of special needs. Money will be delegated on the basis of schools' profiles and prior attainment of pupils. Statements will become expressions of desirable outcomes that the school will be expected to achieve using delegated funds. The fundamental part of a statement closely defining the support a child needs and providing the school with the necessary funds will be lost.

This looks set to lead to legal challenges from parents. The LEA is responsible for ensuring the needs of statemented children are met. It cannot delegate this responsibility to schools, even if it can delegate the funding. Also, schools will be reluctant to accept special needs pupils if they do not have adequate resources.

We all had the chance, under the Tories' grant-maintained system, to opt for 100-per cent delegation. We did not want it then, we do not want it now. Let's all write to Estelle and tell her so.

Joan Dalton

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