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Special needs funding

Discussion in 'Education news' started by scilady, Nov 2, 2018.

  1. scilady

    scilady New commenter

    What is the maximum we should allocate to one pupil given the overall school deficit and lack of local authority cash? Average per pupil is about 6k so how many times that much should we allow? Do you agree with spending say 100k on one child who will never be employable?
    I often wonder why there is so much more need now. I suppose some of those with medical needs would have expired in my day, but when I went to school 1949-63 I do not recall ANY behaviour troubles in my school, nor was anyone on my council estate street sent away, which is, I believe what happened to those out of parental control as a rule. I also do not remember any bullying as I would have been the prime target ( at the top of the class and not the least interested in pop culture like the rest ) . Why are so many now out of the control of their parents...is it diet, or stress of too many exams, social media or what?
  2. Fairandaccurate

    Fairandaccurate New commenter

    When I went to school (70's) I had multiple exclusions and spent my last year outside the head teachers office copying the dictionary. While not diagnosed I am fairly certain I am autistic and my child has been diagnosed as such.
    Back in the 40's and 50's these children with bad behaviour were put in special schools or homes.

    Now my child does not get violent (he has a younger and older sibling who are both perfect well behaved children) but he is very disruptive and can get aggressive and self harming when he melts down. There does seem to be some general rules for Autism that would help teachers a lot to understand but our school has no clue with even the SLT team saying he has temper tantrums. I would suggest funding requirement would be a lot less if teachers were taught how autistic children think. - We are incredibly supportive parents and in his GCSE year he will get some A*'s but if he had not spent so much time out of class he could do better. All it would take is understanding. I was sent to a psychiatrist when I was young (dad was a DR) and they found nothing wrong with me. I have spent my life being fired from jobs for being too argumentative but have found good bosses who know that nurturing provides better results and am now very highly paid and productive.

    Bottom line OP, the inclusion of SEN in mainstream schools is what has caused a lot of this. It puts a lot more pressure on teachers who are not well prepared for this and that buck stops with head teachers/MAT's.
  3. scilady

    scilady New commenter

    They probably were, but why are there so many more of them now? No-one we knew of in a close knit council estate had a child who misbehaved. And what should be spent....10k a child ?
  4. Lalex123

    Lalex123 Established commenter

    I have worked in severely deprived areas and there are a lot of students with additional needs. Thinking of reasons why, I have come to the following conclusions:
    • Parents hated school so they do not support the decisions schools make about their child. This leads to the child thinking they can get away with anything and behaviour deteriorates.
    • Parents have different expectations of behaviour to school. I had one parent tell me it’s ok if their child doesn’t do all of the work I set because they wouldn’t do it either!
    • Parents don’t spend quality time with their children so the kids always do things for attention. In school they get attention in the form of detentions, individual plans, parental involvement, etc. Which then spirals out of control.
    • Parents have given up on their teenagers or CBA with the trouble they bring. Child thinks they can do anything they want and so pushes the boundaries at school.
    • Student gets in with the wrong crowd and parents don’t know how to straighten their child out. Punishments don’t work so they give up creating conflict.
    • Students have been abused and this creates a variety of issues that manifest themselves in poor behaviour. Even parents who have been abused unintentionally pass their hurt/anger on to their children and this can lead to multigenerational issues with authority and rules.
    • Parents think that GTA (or other 18+ computer games/films/music) has no affect on their child’s development and concept of right and wrong. Children are exposed to much more violence and segregation through the media.
    I don’t blame parents, I think there should be someone employed in the healthcare system that supports parents throughout their child’s development. A friend of mine’s child is really badly behaved occasionally and has other issues. My friend has spoken to school, her Dr, care professionals but they dont have time to really find out what’s going on. If you have a 15 yr old who’s out of control, who can you go to for support? Guidance? Advice?
  5. Fairandaccurate

    Fairandaccurate New commenter

    You are in the minority, we have great achieving children both sides of our disruptive one and both are doing very well, great attendance, behaviour, marks etc. We still get blamed. Our Autistic one is one of the worst types you can imagine because they cannot be managed out of class easily despite the schools best efforts.

    We work closely with the teachers to resolve their issues, SEN is useless (MAT 'funded') and the school does not support us in any way, quite the opposite, we are treated rudely, it feels like they want to get rid of us. We do everything in our power to help and have spent many day worth with teachers. Out middle son is aiming for A-A* this year but his marks are below his elders despite being the smarter of the two. Why? left out of lessons, incident room, exclusion all take their toll but the worst is if the teacher are not educated they get frustrated.

    But back on topic, I 100% agree that in general there are a lot of parents out there that do not spend the energy and often it is not their fault, single parent families having to work hard etc. One may even try and claim the real bottom of the chain is the falling of the British empire so there is now an inability to fund outside of schools as well as in. I used to be a Psych nurse, the way they closed all the homes and support to try and follow an family supported Italian model has not helped.

    It is difficult, our child has rights but even these are being abused at school which is frustrating but I also see the schools struggling financially, MAT's offloading SEN. In our school the teachers happily tell the children now there is no money to hire good teachers. This only happened the year the MAT came about and the CEO / head teacher of the MAT is likely in the 200K+ range of "reimbursement" from the school.

    I think it is fair to say the number of difficult children out there has not changed in 50 years, society has.
    School funding is one issue but MAT's are just nasty money dredges at the expense of SEN and that costs teachers in frustration and worse.

    Studies also show this likely to be the case. It is the behaviour of the parents and the environment of reality that makes them, not some fantasy game they know is fantasy.
    Lalex123 likes this.
  6. circuskevin

    circuskevin Established commenter

    I teach the difficult lads in the neighbourhood to unicycle. Seems to work. They go on to become family men with jobs such as mechanics, builders, landscape gardeners etc.

    A local lad about 11 years old will be turning up after school today to learn. A year ago he told me had 'anger management problems' and ADHD. Having known him since he was 6 I did my best to suppress a smile!

    He called me a 'Tesser' or something at the weekend when he came round to borrow some novelty carts!

    One of the former 'World's most talented hooligans' is coming round to help. He will pass on stories of the mischief he and his fellow lads got up to. Time we gave this lad some proper skills and an idea of the fun he can have.

  7. bessiesmith

    bessiesmith Occasional commenter

    There IS an increase in the number of autistic children in schools. This is obviously in part to do with better diagnoses but cannot entirely be put down to this. It's a phenomenon like the increase in the number of children with allergies which must have some cause but does not seem to have been pinpointed yet.

    Of course it is important that teachers have training in dealing with students with autism and other special needs. However, all the training in the world does not help if you have a class of 33 students, including 3 or 4 with complicated special needs and no TA. It is imperative for everyone's safety and education that the teacher can maintain a calm and orderly atmosphere and in the above scenario, sometimes the only option is to remove the autistic child. I don't know how much funding is 'fair' - there will never be 'enough' funding for all the public services we would like. However, as the poster above points out - ensuring that large sums of public money are not syphoned off into paying for layers of MAT management would help direct the funding we do have to improving the experience of everyone in the classrooms.
    phlogiston and Fairandaccurate like this.
  8. circuskevin

    circuskevin Established commenter

    To continue ...

    Lewis turned up with a friend. They are both 10 years and in year 6.

    Opening the back doors of my van they each used the inside of the door for support before launching themselves off.

    This way they are next to each other whilst preparing to push off.

    The target to achieve was 5 metres. I explained that falling forwards off the unicycle was the safe way to learn.

    Progress was slow initially. His friend was falling correctly whilst Lewis was falling backwards.

    His friend achieved a metre first. The delight of starting to learn and an incentive for Lewis to persevere.

    Lewis caught on and both were getting 2 - 3 metres. A real achievement. They would succeed given time.

    Lewis with his Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder usually struggles to stay on task for 2 seconds. Tonight they managed 2 hours.

    Both achieved over 4 metres. Lewis did swear a bit and got angry throwing the unicycle down as the 5 metre target proved beyond him tonight.

    Lewis has been excluded from school and been on medication. His determination and progress with the unicycling has reassured me he will become successful in the future.

    They will be back tomorrow night.

    phlogiston and Dyathinkhesaurus like this.
  9. nomad

    nomad Star commenter

    Unicycling appears to be a miraculously transferable skill!

    I trust you have changed the child's name!
  10. circuskevin

    circuskevin Established commenter

    Update ...

    Multiple rings of the doorbell last night indicate exactly who is calling! (with his friend).

    Lewis soon achieved 5 metres on the unicycle. He started practising free mounting of his own volition.

    All smiles last night as he was making up his own challenges. Plenty of swearing too but no anger.

    His atrocious behaviour, rudeness, lies and arrogance the last few years had always indicated to me that he had the potential to become a star pupil if only that energy could be focussed.

    He has started on that journey. I have rang his school to let them know.

    Dyathinkhesaurus likes this.
  11. circuskevin

    circuskevin Established commenter

    Lewis has learnt a new word. It is 'p l e a s e'.

    I first heard him utter it hesitantly a week ago on Thursday.(A day after previous post).

    He was talking to a slightly grumpy, bearded occupational therapist who doesn't like his job. He asked him to repark his car to give more space for unicycling. The gentleman obliged him.

    Today Lewis turned up with a young half brother 'Harry'.

    I was making them some balloon swords when Harry started to get demanding. Lewis intervened. He told Harry that I had "watched him(Lewis) grow up and he must always be polite"! Harry duly corrected his behaviour.

    The day before Lewis learnt to unicycle he was as I described in the last post. Now he was reminding others how to behave!!

    phlogiston likes this.
  12. circuskevin

    circuskevin Established commenter

    Hi @Fairandaccurate ,

    A step forward could be to get yourself diagnosed. Would you do that?

  13. circuskevin

    circuskevin Established commenter

    The day Lewis started to unicycle was a bit frustrating with slow progress.

    At one point he lifted the unicycle over his head and slammed it down in anger. I was not very happy.

    Last Sunday, six days after he started, he again lifted the unicycle over his head ... and smiled! He was poking fun at himself. No slamming down of course.

    That day he managed 16 metres. Well ahead of his friend.

    He is learning one of life's lessons. Persistence pays. He can use the experience in future to avoid the 'getting angry' phase.

    Today a week since last Sunday he was again lifting the unicycle above his head ... in memory of a past tantrum.

    After doing 22 metres on Wednesday he set his new record of 34 metres yesterday(Saturday).

    They later took the unicycles off with them and I found them neatly stacked in my porch on returning from an excursion.

  14. dunnocks

    dunnocks Star commenter

    lack of sleep. maybe, there is a mounting body of evidence that early brain development is being arrested by lack of sleep in childhood.

    Another suggestion that has cropped up over and over again, some evidence maybe, but difficult to isolate as a factor, use of mobile phones in pregnancy and around babies.

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