Rights and Equality for Young People with Additional Needs in Education
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The local authority have an obligation to offer choice and to tailor additional educational services to each individual young person’s needs. A major issue for young people with additional needs is that their own rights to a tailored education are not being met. An example of this is the inclusion of young people in to local mainstream schools, with a clear lack of appropriate funding and resources available to enable a positive education experience. The right to select a secondary school applies to all young people resident in the UK, however young people with additional needs are being failed and are being placed in schools that have a resource or provision as appose to the parental choice of a school near their home or with their friends.
This is a large scale issue throughout the country affecting almost every parent of a child with additional needs that I have had contact with thus far. There appears to be a pattern of discrimination against children on EHCP’s that is being ignored. Parents/ carers are being left to fight for the rights of their children to fair treatment within education and to be given the same educational options as their peers.
If your child has additional needs then you will at some point have to prepare yourself for conflicts surrounding education provisions and local authority funding. This should not be the case as all our young people are the future generation and should be entitled to a fair education, disability or not.
This petition has been created to challenge the discrimination of young people with additional needs by local authority education sectors.
Our goals are:
1. An independent enquiry in to the unfair treatment of young people with additional needs nationally, considering how local authorities are considering the young people and their family/ carers wishes and working in parent partnership.
2. To re-examine the wording/ structure of the Section 28A of the Disability Discrimination Act 1995, as amended by the Special Educational Needs and Disability Act 2001 and the Equality Act 2010. This should aim to ensure that the framework specifically outlines the increased availability of resources in more than one school within the borough for various additional needs, to improve school choice and access.
3. To provide each school with the tools to provide education to all young people able to access mainstream school, ensuring that equipment for blind/ deaf and cognitively challenged young people be available within a significantly higher number of educational establishments.
4. Prevent any local authority resource based provisions effecting the outcome of school choice, by limiting the parental choice applications due to local authority funding local resource bases for specific needs. The additional needs of a young person should not limit and exclude them from having an equal choice and right to access one of the schools from their three choices.
5. Regularly monitor access to education for young people with additional needs for all local authorities, ensuring a positive education experience is being offered to all in partnership with parents and carers.
We ask that the minister for education and Prime Minister Theresa May take the necessary steps outlined in our goals, to improve access to education for young people with additional needs.
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