parents responses about SEN in Welsh Government home education survey

What home educating parents of children with SEN and disabilities told the Welsh Government

The new draft home education Guidance for Wales says that someone from the council will meet families every year to decide whether there is sufficient evidence of suitable education.

There is also an expectation that the child will be asked questions and that someone will look through the child’s work.

In my consultation response I said this would have a disproportionate impact on children with special needs, especially children with autism.

The consultation closes on July 3rd. My response is here

Earlier in the year there was a pre-consultation survey and the Welsh Government recently published the responses from parents. Unfortunately, the link doesn’t work at the moment, but I am able to summarise some of the main points below.

Autism, dyslexia and dyspraxia were mentioned frequently by parents, together with anxiety, bullying, sensory overload and stress.

These families will  now be faced with annual monitoring meetings.

These were some of the points parents made:

school can’t cope with autistic child
school can’t cope with mixture of SEN and gifted, hence flexischool
school made child too anxious
school too noisy
school too stressful for child to learn
school environment overwhelming
autistic but no statement so no support in school
school ignored what tribunal said
school can’t manage child’s behaviour
SEN attributed to ‘behaviour’
labelled disruptive at school
too much emphasis on written work at school (linked with dyslexia)
struggling with reading and writing meant being treated as unable to achieve
school doesn’t work for late readers
pressure from school to take child out
child not making progress at school
bullied by teacher
bullied by teaching assistant
bullied by other children
could just about cope with primary but knew secondary would be impossible
not getting support set out in statement
working memory difficulties
inflexible teaching methods
needed more one to one support
not being stretched academically
school can’t cope with gifted child
child found school boring
needed more explaining and reinforcing than possible at school
more time for special talents eg music practice
not enough time on practical subjects
school didn’t follow through on assessments for SEN
too much testing
not enough focus on basic skills
class size too big
no time to explore subjects
not shown how to do things
child perfectionist, felt never enough time in school to get it right
shouted at when they didn’t finish their work
school didn’t want parents involved
pressure just to get through the syllabus
too academic too early
didn’t get on with phonics
peers were bad influence
school day too long
formal school starts too early
child was selectively mute
waiting for right school
taking year out because of disability
LA said parent was making things up about child’s medical condition
physical disability made school difficult

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