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Special Educational Needs

Volume 490: debated on Monday 30 March 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families how many and what percentage of pupils with statemented special educational needs resident in each local authority area attended special schools in (a) 2003 and (b) the last 12 months for which figures are available, broken down by type of special educational need. (262903)

Information about type of special educational need was first collected in 2004 and is therefore not available for 2003. A table containing the information requested for the years 2004 and 2008 has been placed in the House Libraries.

To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families (1) what powers a local authority has to place children with special needs into a special school that has attained trust status; (266634)

(2) what mechanism he plans to enable local authorities to place special needs children in special schools which have trust status.

Under section 324 (5) (b) of the Education Act 1996, all maintained schools, including special schools with trust status, are under a duty to admit children whose special educational needs (SEN) statements name the school as the one where the child is to be educated. Local authorities must consult the governing body of the school, and if the school is in the area of another authority, that authority, before naming the school. Children can only be admitted to a maintained special school if they have a statement which names that school, except in prescribed circumstances set out in section 316A of the Education Act 1996. These include admission for the purposes of an assessment, with the agreement of the local education authority, the head teacher, the parent and those from whom the local authority seeks advice for an assessment; where the child remains admitted to the special school following an assessment; or, with the agreement of the local education authority, the head teacher and the parent, following a change in circumstances.

To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families how many disabled children have been statemented in each of the last five years; and if he will make a statement. (267519)

[holding answer 27 March 2009]: Information on the number of disabled children who have been statemented in each of the last five years is not available.

The available information on special educational needs, including information on the type of special educational needs, is published in Table 9 of Statistical First Release

15/2008: Special Educational Needs in England: January 2008 which can be found at:

http://www.dcsf.gov.uk/rsgateway/DB/SFR/s000794/index.shtml

Information for the previous year can be found at:

http://www.dcsf.gov.uk/rsgateway/DB/SFR/s000732/index.shtml

Information for 2006 can be found at:

http://www.dcsf.gov.uk/rsgateway/DB/SFR/s000661/index.shtml

Information for 2005 can be found at:

http://www.dcsf.gov.uk/rsgateway/DB/SFR/s000584/index.shtml

and information for 2004 can be found at:

http://www.dcsf.gov.uk/rsgateway/DB/SFR/s000537/index.shtml