Blaenau Gwent Council is to go out to formal consultation over a proposal to establish a new 3 – 16 school for pupils with social, emotional, behavioural and developmental difficulties.
The Council’s Executive Committee today approved for the Education Transformation team to carry out an extensive formal consultation into the proposal this autumn and to report back on the findings in January 2017.
The Council has recognised the need to review provision for pupils presenting with SEBD. It is proposed that the new school would be established using existing buildings and facilities in the Ebbw Vale and Tredegar areas and an element of home/community tuition would also be retained.
The new school would offer 24 permanent places and 40 ‘turnaround’ places. It would have its own Governing Body and Leadership Team.
Earlier this year the Council informally consulted with a number of stakeholders, which included pupils and parents, over the need for a SEBD school and the response was overwhelming that this provision is much needed in the county borough.
The proposal that will be consulted on is:
- The establishment of a specialist SEBD setting or school with a capacity for 24 permanent places
- The continued provision within the new school to provide transitional provision for 40 pupils, with a view to these pupils returning to mainstream education, including support to mainstream schools to help them increase their capacity to work with pupils presenting with SEBD
- The provision of community/home tuition for 11 pupils provided through the new school.
Councillor Keren Bender, the Council’s Executive Member for Education said:
“I am pleased that the Executive Committee has today endorsed a formal consultation into the proposal to establish a 3 – 16 school for SEBD pupils here in Blaenau Gwent.
“Estyn; the Council and, most important of all, parents of pupils with specific needs have all identified the need for such a provision within the county borough and we now need to explore the views of the wider community and other stakeholders.
“The establishment of a SEBD School would enable education professionals to take an early identification approach when pupils are presenting with these particular needs. It is a long term and sustainable approach to ensuring that the pupils have access to the education, the tailored support and the stability they need to progress.
“We will shortly be letting you know how you can take part in the consultation and I would like to encourage as many people as possible to take part and have their say.”
The formal consultation will start on the 31st October 2016 and there will be a variety of ways for people to have their say, including online.