Support for additional needs children

Autistic children and those with additional needs should be among the first to be re-integratred into school. Even just two mornings a week/alternate days/short blocks would go a huge way to ease their distress at this time and provide much-needed continuity with their school. AN children were dropped from a great height when the schools shut with no preparation or back-up.
I also think areas of therapy where social distancing is easier should be re-introduced as they are vital. (See below)

Why the contribution is important

Our daughter (aged 7) is autistic and attends Carlibar Communication Centre in Barrhead, East Renfrewshire. The lockdown has had a hugely detrimental effect on her already. She has no understanding of why her whole world (including music and equine therapy) came to an end at the same time.
Her behaviour has been very difficult to deal with and as parents, it has been heartbreaking to see her distress levels.
School is everything to her and the support we get as parents. The staff have been fantastic during lockdown but unfortunately, our daughter simply doesn't engage with school-related things at home.
She is an only child and was only just beginning to mix with peers for the first time before lockdown happened.
We totally understand the gravity of the situation (as journalists we are category 3 key workers ) and have adhered to every guideline. However, in striking a balance for our daughter, we believe time spent at school is essential for her not to suffer more.

by JulieBryson on May 05, 2020 at 01:08PM

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Average rating: 3.8
Based on: 7 votes


  • Posted by ProtestTheHero May 05, 2020 at 13:27

    Our three-year-old son has GDD and additional needs, and has been refused access to education in South Lanarkshire during lockdown because his mother and I aren't both keyworkers. His needs are more complex and deep-rooted than neurotypical children of his age, but no allowances have been made for this. We feel this is a dereliction of duty on the part of the local council and also the Scottish Government, which has hitherto treated him as equivalent to an undergraduate at university or a teenager at high school.

    Children with complex or additional needs should have been regarded as a priority from March 23rd, and this situation needs to be revised as soon as possible, with nurseries allowed to reopen and schools instructed to prioritise children with additional needs or conditions like autism when their doors reopen - which should itself be accelerated.
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