Friday, 04 May 2012 08:24


A North Wales Assembly Member has called on the Welsh Government to respond to concerns that students on the autistic spectrum at Further Education level in some counties in Wales are not receiving the same level of support as those in other counties.


Raising the matter with the Education Minister this week, Mr Isherwood, who Chairs the Assembly Cross Party Autism Group, said: “The head teacher of a school providing education for pupils on the autistic spectrum contacted me to give me the good news that the school works with Careers Wales to find the most suitable provision for each pupil at FE level. This could be support from a local FE college, a special education department within a local FE college, a day specialist college or a residential specialist college.


“How, therefore, do you respond to that headteacher’s concern that this is not equally available across all counties and that only certain counties can offer all of these options? Surely, all pupils should have a right to the same provision.”



The Minister, Leighton Andrews, replied: “That is a fair question, and I congratulate that school on the work that it has done in partnership with others. However, it is precisely those kinds of challenges that led me to establish the Task and Finish Group on Post-16 Special Educational Needs, shortly after becoming responsible for the education portfolio, and we have been taking the recommendations of that group forward.

“There are still challenges in relation to the level of out-of-county and out-of-country provision on which we are still reliant. I hope that as a result of the education Bill that we will be introducing next year, on which we will be consulting shortly, we will be able to address some of these challenges.”



Promoted by Mark Isherwood AM at National Assembly for Wales, Cardiff Bay, Cardiff, CF99 1NA

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