Demonstrators leave rucksack on county council steps for every Warwickshire child 'failed' by council SEND services

  Posted: 13.07.21 at 19:40 by The Editor

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Demonstrators left a rucksack on the steps of Shire Hall yesterday for every child "failed" by Warwickshire County Council's special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) services.

Parents and carers from across Warwickshire gathered outside the county council headquarters in Warwick to share their dissatisfaction with the way their children have been treated by local services.

Organised by SEND Crisis Warwickshire, the protests saw the steps of Shire Hall covered in banners, placards and rucksacks with ITV news in attendance.

SEND Crisis Warwickshire has also written to Ofsted to raise concerns over local SEND provisions, and to share experiences from local families.

Ofsted and the Care Quality Commission are to start a routine review into Warwickshire's SEND provisions this week.

Parents have raised specific concerns about the new Inclusion Programme which they say does not take into account the needs of individual children but uses a blanket plan across the board.

Former Labour leader at WCC, and SEND Crisis Warwickshire campaigner Helen Adkins said: "The county’s new Inclusion Programme is all about saving money, sadly at the expense of the safety and best interests of the most vulnerable children in Warwickshire.

"I hope the upcoming Ofsted inspection, will be an opportunity for the county to be open and transparent about the problems families across Warwickshire face in finding the right provision for their children with SEND."

The demonstration comes on the same day as WCC published a report heralding the success of the new programme.

In the report, portfolio holder for children’s services Cllr Jeff Morgan said: "We recognise that change will take time and there is still more work to be done, but we remain committed to listening to the voices of our children and their families and working with our partners, we will continue to support all our children and young people to be the best they can be, so that Warwickshire is an inclusive and child friendly county.”

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