New special school is needed by town

Children from the Daventry area need and deserve a Special Needs School.

As a former social worker and current school governor, I attended the presentation at the Icon on plans to build a Special Needs school in Daventry. A number of interested parents were present and overall the possibility of a Special Needs School in Daventry was music to their ears.

Having a child with special needs can be exasperating for parents. It can also put pressure on infant schools. Initially they may battle with the authorities to get acceptance that their child has special needs that are difficult to address within mainstream schooling and, when they feel that they have overcome this hurdle another problem emerges as to what school will best be able to address their child’s needs.

Children with special needs, depending on their ability, may be highly intelligent or gifted. Like any child they have the right to educational support and commitment in order to enable them to reach their full potential.

Early diagnosis and assessment is crucial and, with the support of agencies such as health , pre-school, education and social care, ideally a child’s individual needs will be identified and early intervention plans support and policies put in place.

A child with special needs can adversely suffer if their needs remain unmet.

Their frustrations and confusion can then result in additional emotional, psychological and behavioural problems.

Currently children with special needs in the Daventry area have to travel considerable distances to and from school which often puts pressure on them and their families.

Also, during their free time and school holidays, they may miss their school friends and peer group.

Consequently they can feel lonely and left out when, like any child, they need to feel valued and included. With this in mind Special Needs School provision in Daventry is long overdue.

The current plans for provision merit the support and backing and monitoring of all individuals and agencies involved.

Children with special needs have the right to be enabled to reach their full potential and as the planned school will include children from four to 18, this should ensure a smooth seamless pathway for them. This much-needed local educational provision will give both parents and children the recognition and breathing space they merit and deserve.

After all, according to children’s policies ‘Every Child Matters’ and, what better place than Daventry to establish this much-needed provision.

Gloria Edwards-Davidson