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The Queen's Speech

11 May 2012

Big reforms are lined up for SEN under the coalition government's legislation announced in the recent Queen's Speech and which are due to come into force in 2014. Sarah Teather, Children's minister, says that the current assessment and support arrangements are 'not fit for purpose.' We are inclined to agree.

Key changes are:

  • Combined 'education, health and care plans' to replace SEN statements.
  • Provision of statutory protection for people with SEN up to age 25.
  • Local Authorities will be required to publish details of the support available.
  • 'School action' and 'school action plus' to be scrapped for less serious difficulties.
  • Parents or young adults with education, health and care plans will be given the right to a personal budget for support.

Whilst some of the reforms are welcomed, we, at Dyslexikit Limited, worry that fewer resources will be available to students with literacy difficulties as a consequence. Will their problems be seen as less important? There are fears that some students with genuine literacy difficulties may not be put through assessment under the new arrangements and therefore not get the support they desperately need.

Our other worry is that it may become the burden of an already overworked teaching force to coordinate the plan between the various agencies.