The Department for Education announced yesterday that it will invite Ofsted to formally inspect local authorities on how they meet their legal duties towards children with special educational needs (SEN).
This is good news for Deaf children and their parents, who will now be able to assess the quality of the support they are being given, and crucially, how it compares to support at other schools or in other areas.
Susan Daniels, Chief Executive of the National Deaf Children’s Society said:
“This announcement has the potential to make a real long-lasting difference to the 90% of deaf children who may be reliant on support from local authority special education needs services.
Teachers of the Deaf play a vital role in a deaf child’s development but these services are not currently inspected by Ofsted, so parents are in the dark about the quality of their child’s educational support.
This is particularly unacceptable because a shocking 57% of deaf children leave school without 5 good GCSEs.
“Deafness is not a learning disability so local authority services for deaf children must be held to account for failing to close the attainment gap between deaf and hearing children.
We call on Ofsted to begin rigorous inspections urgently in the new year, so that parents can be confident that every deaf child will now receive the support they need.”
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