Ruth Cadbury condemns government response to crisis in special needs education

Image above: Ruth Cadbury in Parliament on 11 January

Government cuts are “making life much harder” for children with special needs and disabilities says MP

Ruth Cadbury MP has spoken out in Parliament about the challenges facing children with special education needs and disabilities (SEND).

In her speech earlier this month, the Brentford & Isleworth MP focused on the huge challenges and hurdles facing SEND children that local parents and teachers have told her about, including the long delay facing students trying to get health and education care plans (EHCPs).

Ruth also mentioned “the impact that 13 years of funding cuts to local councils like Hounslow has had”, while warning the government these cuts were “making life much harder” for SEND children, their parents and teachers.

Ruth spoke about the gaps in schooling, with many children missing out on much needed lessons and specialist teaching due to school and mental health funding cuts.

She also mentioned the huge pressure placed on families and parents locally when navigating the complex and bureaucratic SEND system.

Government “have failed to respond to this crisis in SEND”

Speaking after the debate the Brentford and Isleworth MP said:

“I know from listening to families across Hounslow just how difficult it can be for children with special educational needs and disabilities. When I met with the Hounslow Parents Carers forum I heard just how difficult it was for them.

“Whether it’s the long waits for EHCPs or to get the support in school, I know this is putting a huge amount of pressure on families who are already struggling. The housing crisis is also having a huge impact as many children with SEND are living in small cramped accommodation, with many stuck in temporary accommodation miles from their school, friends and family.

“The government have failed to respond to this crisis in SEND and have made it even worse by imposing sweeping cuts on local authorities such as Hounslow where we have seen over £140 million cut in their budget over the last 10 years. Likewise schools across Hounslow are having their budgets squeezed and are struggling to afford the additional teaching assistants and specialist support needed to support pupils.

“I will continue to stand up to ensure the voices of young people with SEND, their parents and teachers are heard loudly by the government.”