SEN reforms failing young people and parents

A parliamentary committee has published a report on support in schools and colleges for children and young people with special educational needs.

The MPs on the House of Commons Education Select Committee spent the last 18-months looking into the 2014 Government reforms which aimed at placing children and young people at the heart of the SEND system. The Committee heard from more than 70 witnesses and received more than 700 submissions of written evidence.

VIEW contributed to the inquiry, telling MPs that due to a combination of cuts in local authority budgets, changes in SEN funding, and education policy initiatives, there is now a crisis in specialist educational provision for children and young people with vision impairment. The current system is failing this vulnerable group, meaning that a generation of vision impaired children and young people is at risk of poor outcomes that will seriously undermine their ability to become independent adults

What the committee found

‘The Committee heard overwhelming evidence that the reforms were letting down young people who need additional support with their education. It heard from young people that poor support can result in them being isolated in school, unable to access the curriculum and find it hard to make friends. As adults, the training and employment opportunities were found to be poor, deriving from a fundamental lack of ambition for young people with SEND across the country.’


‘The Committee concludes that while the reforms to the support for children and young people contained in the Children and Families Act 2014 were the right ones, poor implementation has put local authorities under pressure, left schools struggling to cope and, ultimately, thrown families into crisis.’

A generation of children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities is failing to receive the support it deserves, with poorly implemented legislation leaving families facing a nightmare of bureaucracy, buck-passing and confusion, say the Education Committee in its report on Special educational needs and disabilities.

Read the details on the Parliament UK website