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									Consultation with Children and Young People – Final Report April 2006   page 1 of 29


STRATEGY FOR SPECIAL PROVISION
REPORT TO STRATEGIC WORKING GROUP


PURPOSE
The purpose of this paper is to update the Strategic Working Group (SWG)
about work that has been taking place between September 2007 and March
2008 to ensure the views of children and young people are known regarding
the priorities and options agreed by the Strategic Working Group.

RELEVANT BACKGROUND
A written report was presented to the SWG in June 2007 summarizing
participation activities led by Birmingham Children‟s Fund to enable children
and young people (C&YP) to contribute to the Emerging Thinking document.
Following this a specific workstream was set up to lead the work on
consultation with C&YP during the development of the City Strategy for
Special provision.

The group has met 6 times since September 2007. Membership comprised:

Fiona Wallace          Inclusion Services and chair
Fran Marsh             South Birmingham PCT
Sarah Hallatt          Birmingham Children‟s Fund Participation Team
John Bennett           Associate Advisor School Effectiveness
Gill Jones             Rights of the Child
Sheila Holden          Calthorpe School
Lynne Dawborne         Parent (2 meetings)
Ray Plummer            Connexions (1 meeting)

Unfortunately no mainstream school representatives attended.

A small group of children and young people attended the Strategic Working
Group meeting on 17th September 2007 to speak directly to the members
about their schools and their aspirations. Display boards and a DVD were
brought to the meeting to help show the views of other young people who had
participated in a range of summer holiday workshops. A separate report has
already been made available to the SWG detailing activities undertaken as
part of the consultation on the Emerging Thinking paper. These activities had
largely been undertaken by C&YP with a range of special needs. An aim of
the consultation reported herein was to ensure a wider group of pupils offered
their views.


PROGRESS ON TASKS AND OUTCOMES

Process
The SWG has agreed a set of questions to be used in consultation events
with parents and other interested parties. These questions formed the basis
for a set of „child friendly‟ materials for use with C&YP attending Birmingham
schools. Supporting activities were designed so that staff could develop
Consultation with Children and Young People – Final Report April 2006   page 2 of 29

pupils‟ knowledge about special needs before they responded to the
questions. These materials were made available via a dedicated webpage on
the BGFL along with an introductory letter signed by Cllr Lawrence, guidance
notes for staff and a data sheet for return with responses. They can still be
seen at http://www.bgfl.org/cypconsultation . A dedicated email box was set
up for enquiries and email responses. All schools were alerted and reminded
via ebriefing with direct contact to those requesting it.

The questions sent to schools for consultation with C&YP were as follows:

   1. How could special schools and mainstream schools work together to
      give all children the help they need?
   2. People who work in special schools know about helping children with
      lots of needs. Should they help those who work in other schools? How
      could they do this?
   3. Do you think that children with different sorts of special need could go
      to the same school?
   4. Some children just have physical difficulties. How would it be best to
      help them at school?
   5. Should children with a lot of needs go to a local school with extra help
      or travel to a separate school?
   6. Some children need so much help they can‟t go to school near home.
      What do you think about a local school being changed to be able to
      provide this help?
   7. Some children‟s behaviour is extremely difficult and they cannot go to
      their local school. What sort of school should they go to?
   8. Now you have talked about special needs do you think things should
      stay the same or should they change?

Sample
Responses were received from over 800 pupils attending 15 schools
representing mainstream primary and secondary schools, a resource base for
children with speech and language difficulties, special schools and children
with statements in mainstream classes. The questions had been discussed in
a range of sessions such as school council, with a specific group of pupils, a
particular class, assembly or PSHE lesson. Some staff summarized the views
of their pupils to help us with interpretation of their pupils‟ responses (eg
Calthorpe and Kingstanding). Some sessions had been recorded by pupils
and in the case of Parkview secondary school every pupil in the school sent
their views after a lesson was dedicated to discussion. Not all schools
remembered to send in data sheets but our best estimate of the composition
of the group of respondents is included in appendix 1. After discussion within
the workstream, with the workstream leads and staff in Equalities it was
agreed not to ask pupils their ethnicity or religion. For young children and
those with considerable special needs this was felt likely to cause confusion.
Instead schools were asked to confirm that any group responding was
representative of the make up of their school. In all except one case this was
confirmed; at Dame Ellen Pinsent the group of Y6 pupils responding was
described as brighter than average for the school.
Consultation with Children and Young People – Final Report April 2006   page 3 of 29

Responses
Pupils sent in much valuable and interesting information about their lives and
their schools. Not all schools had answered the questions available on the
website, choosing instead to pick up on issues for their particular school.
These responses were read and, where possible, have been included under
the question headings. All the original information has been stored in case it
can be used again.

A summary of the responses from each school can be seen in Appendix 2.
Responses for Parkview school have been given by Year group to do the
sample size justice. Where representative of the range of views, direct quotes
from the pupil responses have been used as a summary comment.

In summary, responses suggest that pupils are happy at their schools. C&YP
liked the idea of mainstream and special schools working more closely and a
number of creative ideas were suggested. For those pupils attending a special
school there was a reluctance for changes to be made that might adversely
affect their own schooling, for example they liked the idea of their staff helping
other staff but not if it meant they had to manage without their teachers or
teaching assistants. A more thorough explanation of the timescale and
planning for change may help alleviate this fear. This has been covered in the
letter sent to pupils thanking them for taking part.

The C&YP seemed divided on whether pupils with differing needs could
attend the same school but were unanimous that those with severe behaviour
difficulties should go to separate schools until their behaviour had improved
sufficiently to not hurt or hinder others. The youngsters were concerned about
the cost and practicality of making local schools accessible to those with
physical difficulties but thought it was a good idea, providing their needs to be
safe, cared for and to learn could be met.

Those pupils who were transported to school did not say this was a problem
for them, indeed they said they felt safe going to and from school in this way.
In general mainstream pupils recognised transport might be costly but
stressed that some pupils could not walk to school however near it was.

Feedback
A letter has been written to each school that has taken part thanking the
pupils and staff and giving a summary of the findings. A copy is at Appendix 3

ANY STICKING POINTS AND WAYS FORWARD
None identified

CONSULTATION WITH PARENTS
This has been conducted by a separate workstream, however, as part of the
materials available to schools there was a letter for each pupil to take home
explaining the consultation, where parents could get information and how they
could take part. This letter can be seen at http://www.bgfl.org/cypconsultation
Consultation with Children and Young People – Final Report April 2006   page 4 of 29


PROPOSED NEXT STEPS
Consideration will need to be given as to how best to inform C&YP of the final
strategy once this is agreed.

CONTACT
Fiona Wallace
Tel: 0121 303 0272
Email: Fiona.Wallace@birmingham.gov.uk



Appendix 1 Summary of sample making responses
Appendix 2 Summary of pupil views for each school
Appendix 3 Letter of thanks to schools and pupils
Consultation with Children and Young People – Final Report April 2006       page 5 of 29

Appendix 1

Summary of                 CYP consultation on Priorities and
respondents                options for strategy for special
                           provision

   Name of School             Type of school             Group Composition
                                                                 Boys Girls
         DECT                    mainstream
                                                     Year 7             0        0
                                                     Year 8             2        2
                                                     Year 9             0        1
                                                     Year 10            2        1
                                                     Year 11            3        0
   Lindsworth South                 special
                                                     Year 7             2
                                                     Year 8             2
                                                     Year 9             1
                                                     Year 10                     1
                                                     Year 11            1
  Springfield House                 special
                                                     Year 3                      4
                                                     Year 4                      9
                                                     Year 5             3        3
                                                     Year 6             2        7
   St Barnabas CE                mainstream
                                                     Year 3             2
                                                     Year 4             2
                                                     Year 5             1        1
                                                     Year 6             1        2
  Great Barr Primary             mainstream
                                                     Year 5             4        2
                                                     Year 6             6
     Oscott Manor                   special
                                                     Year 8                      1
                                                     Year 10                     1
                                                     Year 11            1
                                                     Year 12            2        1
                                                     Year 13                     1
Consultation with Children and Young People – Final Report April 2006   page 6 of 29



    Calthorpe School                   special
                                                          Year 1          2
                                                          Year 4          1
                                                          Year 7              1
                                                          Year 8          1
                                                          Year 10         1
                                                          Year 11         1
                                                          Year 12         1
    Hodge Hill Girls'               mainstream
                                                          Year 7              10
                                                          Year 8              11
                                                          Year 9              11
                                                          Year 10             11
                                                          Year 11             12
       Dame Ellen                   mainstream
                                                          Year 6          3   3
 Bordesley Green Girls              mainstream
                                                          Year 10             10
      Wilson Stuart                    special
                                                          Year 7          9   9
                                                          Year 8          9   9
                                                          Year 9          9   9
        Parkview                    mainstream
                                                          whole school 300 300
                                                                       374 433
                                                                           807

Mere Green                    mainstream & lang unit Y 3-6                ~   ~
Queensbury                            special        Y 7-10 ?             ~   ~
St Paul's Community                mainstream        Y 7-10 ?             ~   ~
Consultation with Children and Young People – Final Report April 2006   page 7 of 29




                                  Appendix 2

                Summary sheets of pupil views
                 from all schools taking part
Consultation with Children and Young People – Final Report April 2006              page 8 of 29

                               Bordesley Green Girls School

1.   How could special schools and mainstream schools work together to give all children the help
     they need?

              Girls had a range of ideas about support and friendship between
               the students and communication and learning between staff.

2.   People who work in special schools know about helping children with lots of needs. Should
     they help those who work in other schools? How could they do this?

              Yes as we could all learn - the girls thought their own teachers
               would be especially good at helping other staff and pupils
               through workshops, staff exchange visits and so on…

3.   Do you think that children with different sorts of special need could go to the same school?

              Bullying and stress on teachers were stated as reasons for
               answering no. However the yes reasons out numbered the
               negatives.
              Equal opportunities and human rights issues were stated.

4.   Some children just have physical difficulties. How would it be best to help them at school?


              Practical issues were addressed with a list of suggestions such
               as lighting and paint on the edge of the steps.
              Pupils also stressed that children should feel apart of the class
               and be treated nicely.

5.   Should children with a lot of needs go to a local school with extra help or travel to a separate
     school?

              Many more reasons given for attending a local school ranging
               from being able to get home more quickly if they felt ill to equal
               opportunities arguments.
6.   Some children need so much help they can‟t go to school near home. What do you think about
     a local school being changed to be able to provide this help?

              The girls felt this would be impractical with too much attention
               being given to special needs pupils to the detriment of the rest.
              They did not feel this would be fair.

7.   Some children‟s behaviour is extremely difficult and they cannot go to their local school. What
     sort of school should they go to?



8.   What are your views on making no changes and keeping all the current special schools and
     resource bases the same as they are now?

              Pupils were concerned that they may get distracted and have
               less teacher help if things changed.
              The cost of making changes was noted.
              However, they felt they should be able to say that pupil with
               special needs could come to Bordesley Green Girls and they
               would help them.
Consultation with Children and Young People – Final Report April 2006              page 9 of 29

                      Calthorpe School Specialist Sports College

1.   How could special schools and mainstream schools work together to give all children the help
     they need?




2.   People who work in special schools know about helping children with lots of needs. Should
     they help those who work in other schools? How could they do this?




3.   Do you think that children with different sorts of special need could go to the same school?




4.   Some children just have physical difficulties. How would it be best to help them at school?




5.   Should children with a lot of needs go to a local school with extra help or travel to a separate
     school?




6.   Some children need so much help they can‟t go to school near home. What do you think about
     a local school being changed to be able to provide this help?




7.   Some children‟s behaviour is extremely difficult and they cannot go to their local school. What
     sort of school should they go to?




8.   What are your views on making no changes and keeping all the current special schools and
     resource bases the same as they are now?


           Responses concentrated on what would help the school be more
           enjoyable for the children.
            More computer lessons.
            Come to school for longer.
            Schools should be for everyday but sleep at home
            More individual help for reading.
            Access to football at playtime.
            More swings in the playground.
            Go to the gym more.
            Making friends.
Consultation with Children and Young People – Final Report April 2006             page 10 of 29

                          Dame Ellen Pinsent Special School

   1.   How could special schools and mainstream schools work together to give all children the
        help they need?

             Pupils thought special school teachers could teach staff in other
              school but one pupil felt mainstream staff had not understood his
              difficulties and would need to listen to pupils better

   2.   People who work in special schools know about helping children with lots of needs.
        Should they help those who work in other schools? How could they do this?

             All pupils said yes and gave a range of suggestions including
              sign language, staff training and help to understand pupil‟s
              feelings.
   3.   Do you think that children with different sorts of special need could go to the same
        school?

             Children suggest the environment needed to right e.g. enough
              space for wheelchairs and enough help available.
             There was concern some children may be rough with others.

   4.   Some children just have physical difficulties. How would it be best to help them at school?


             Views were divided between the benefits of special school and
              mainstream, especially if children were "clever".
             Money would be needed to buy wheelchairs.

   5.   Should children with a lot of needs go to a local school with extra help or travel to a
        separate school?

             All children in the group said such pupils should go to a special
              school.

   6.   Some children need so much help they can‟t go to school near home. What do you think
        about a local school being changed to be able to provide this help?

             This group of Y6 pupils thought special school gave extra help
              regarding transition to secondary.
             Moving schools meant they missed their friends.
             Local school would need more staff like a special school.

   7.   Some children‟s behaviour is extremely difficult and they cannot go to their local school.
        What sort of school should they go to?

             Again special school was recommended.
             Their own school was suggested as a suitably supportive school.

   8.   What are your views on making no changes and keeping all the current special schools
        and resource bases the same as they are now?

             Children liked their school but wanted to have friends nearby at
              home.
             One pupil missed some aspects of his old mainstream school
              but like some aspects of his current school.
Consultation with Children and Young People – Final Report April 2006             page 11 of 29

                                     Great Barr School

   1.   How could special schools and mainstream schools work together to give all children the
        help they need?

             Child could visit each other‟s schools to share ideas.


   2.   People who work in special schools know about helping children with lots of needs.
        Should they help those who work in other schools? How could they do this?

             "Schools should be ready for any disability and staff trained"


   3.   Do you think that children with different sorts of special need could go to the same
        school?


             Yes. It is good because I get the chance to see other children
              with disabilities and others walking and playing without
              disabilities.
   4.   Some children just have physical difficulties. How would it be best to help them at school?

             We should all help each other.
             Adults and children can help those who need extra help if there
              are children with and without physical difficulties in the school.

   5.   Should children with a lot of needs go to a local school with extra help or travel to a
        separate school?

             They should go to a school that can help them unless the local
              school has the ability to treat them, but disability does not mean
              a child cannot mix with lots of other children.

   6.   Some children need so much help they can‟t go to school near home. What do you think
        about a local school being changed to be able to provide this help?

             All local school should be like our school.
             “I might be able to walk to my school if it were nearer.”
   7.   Some children‟s behaviour is extremely difficult and they cannot go to their local school.
        What sort of school should they go to?

             Some children are not right for some schools and some schools
              might not have the training for some children.

   8.   What are your views on making no changes and keeping all the current special schools
        and resource bases the same as they are now?

             Our school should stay the same it has the staff to help children
              with ask their needs.
             There should be some special schools but children should be
              able to choose, as they will get the same amount of help at a
              mainstream school.
Consultation with Children and Young People – Final Report April 2006                    page 12 of 29
                                        Lindsworth School
   1.   How could special schools and mainstream schools work together to give all children the help
        they need?

           Visits to mainstream schools, swap expertise.
           Specialised training for mainstream staff to work in special schools



   2.   People who work in special schools know about helping children with lots of needs. Should
        they help those who work in other schools? How could they do this?

                Share experiences.
                Talk to children who attend special schools to find out what daily life is like.



   3.   Do you think that children with different sorts of special need could go to the same school?

           No, in general because more teachers would be needed and care staff employed. Would
            also need more classrooms.
           Mainstream pupils would get picked on if they attended the same lessons as special
            school pupils - disruption and fights.
            Similar pupils together


   4.   Some children just have physical difficulties. How would it be best to help them at school?


           Extra staff and special facilities.
           Disruptive for them and others if the right facilities are not there.
           Physically disabled children should attend a school for their specific problems.


   5.   Should children with a lot of needs go to a local school with extra help or travel to a separate
        school?

           Even though some children travel a long way and get up early they still prefer this to a
            local school.
           Staff know how to deal with their behaviour.
           Children understand the boundaries and feel they are supported better.


   6.   Some children need so much help they can‟t go to school near home. What do you think about
        a local school being changed to be able to provide this help?

           Would cost too much money.
           Staff and building would need to change.
           Special school can help them properly; give that individual time and attention.


   7.   Some children‟s behaviour is extremely difficult and they cannot go to their local school. What
        sort of school should they go to?

           Schools like Lindsworth even if they have to travel further.
           Better to attend school where pupils are the same and you don't stand out.
           Class sizes are smaller and you get more attention.
           “Less pupils, less teachers and staff, makes it better coming to school”.


   8.   What are your views on making no changes and keeping all the current special schools and
        resource bases the same as they are now?

           Pupils with behaviour and emotional problems should go to a special school.
           Physically disabled pupils should go to a specific special school.
           Mainstream and special needs pupils should not be mixed.
Consultation with Children and Young People – Final Report April 2006             page 13 of 29

                                    Mere Green School

   1.   How could special schools and mainstream schools work together to give all children the
        help they need?




   2.   People who work in special schools know about helping children with lots of needs.
        Should they help those who work in other schools? How could they do this?

             Training and hands on practical experience - this can be more
              important than qualifications

   3.   Do you think that children with different sorts of special need could go to the same
        school?


             The children in the language resource base felt safe and happy
              and don't feel they are treated any differently.


   4.   Some children just have physical difficulties. How would it be best to help them at school?




   5.   Should children with a lot of needs go to a local school with extra help or travel to a
        separate school?

             Children felt happy and safe with their taxi guides even when
              there were delays or something went wrong.
              Guides are a valuable link between home and school.

   6.   Some children need so much help they can‟t go to school near home. What do you think
        about a local school being changed to be able to provide this help?

             Children would need extra help so they could still join in the after
              school activities.

   7.   Some children‟s behaviour is extremely difficult and they cannot go to their local school.
        What sort of school should they go to?




   8.   What are your views on making no changes and keeping all the current special schools
        and resource bases the same as they are now?
Consultation with Children and Young People – Final Report April 2006             page 14 of 29

                                        Oscott Manor

   1.   How could special schools and mainstream schools work together to give all children the
        help they need?




   2.   People who work in special schools know about helping children with lots of needs.
        Should they help those who work in other schools? How could they do this?




   3.   Do you think that children with different sorts of special need could go to the same
        school?




   4.   Some children just have physical difficulties. How would it be best to help them at school?




   5.   Should children with a lot of needs go to a local school with extra help or travel to a
        separate school?




   6.   Some children need so much help they can‟t go to school near home. What do you think
        about a local school being changed to be able to provide this help?




   7.   Some children‟s behaviour is extremely difficult and they cannot go to their local school.
        What sort of school should they go to?




   8.   What are your views on making no changes and keeping all the current special schools
        and resource bases the same as they are now?

             Children said they always felt safe in their school.
              Children said they were always happy in their school.
             Overall children at this school were happy and contented with
              their experiences.
Consultation with Children and Young People – Final Report April 2006                page 15 of 29

                                  Park view School - Year 7

   1.     How could special schools and mainstream schools work together to give all children the help
          they need?

        “Mainstream schools could build special facilities for people with special
        needs”.
        “They could hire special teachers to help”.

   2.     People who work in special schools know about helping children with lots of needs.
          Should they help those who work in other schools? How could they do this?

        “Yes. People who teach in special schools can come and help in other
        schools”.
        “They could also give teachers in ordinary schools tips to help them
        learn about special disabilities and show them what to do to help”.

   3.     Do you think that children with different sorts of special need could go to the same
          school?
        “Yes because they will all be equally treated”
        “Yes they could because they are left out so that they get a chance to
        do what normal kids do”.
   4.     Some children just have physical difficulties. How would it be best to help them at school?

        “By giving them help and encouraging them to join in and by supporting
        the children”.
        “If they would like to do some physical activities then there could be a
        supervisor to help them do it step by step”.
   5.     Should children with a lot of needs go to a local school with extra help or travel to a
          separate school?

        “They should go to a local school so they don't feel left out”.
        “I think they should go to a special school because mainstream
        teachers are not properly qualified and they might not know what to do
        to help”.
   6.     Some children need so much help they can‟t go to school near home. What do you think
          about a local school being changed to be able to provide this help?

        “Local schools should change because it is not fair on the children with
        special needs to go to a school far away from home”.
        “The local school should change to provide help for children with
        special needs”.
   7.     Some children‟s behaviour is extremely difficult and they cannot go to their local school.
          What sort of school should they go to?

        “A school where people can understand their feelings and help them
        with their behaviour”.

   8.     What are your views on making no changes and keeping all the current special schools
          and resource bases the same as they are now?

        “Mainstream schools should definitely change”.
        “It is unfair and unjust for children with special needs”.
        “Everyone has the right to go to a normal school”.
Consultation with Children and Young People – Final Report April 2006             page 16 of 29

                               Park view School - Year 8

   1.   How could special schools and mainstream schools work together to give all children the
        help they need?

      “Could be put into one lesson a week to give them experience e.g.
     mainstream with other children”.
     “Teachers in mainstream schools should get the kids to help all special
     needs children and make friends with them, so getting special needs
     kids to come together with others”.
     “Need to share experiences and expertise”.



   2.   People who work in special schools know about helping children with lots of needs.
        Should they help those who work in other schools? How could they do this?

     “Yes because some children in mainstream have special needs that
     undetected and they could be helped”.
     “Training, school councils, job shares”.

   3.   Do you think that children with different sorts of special need could go to the same
        school?


     “They should because these kids don‟t want to be reminded all the time
     that they have a special needs and should get the same treatment as
     any other kid”.
     “Some children felt it was too specialised and could be a drain on
     resources.
     “Special needs children need to feel part of what‟s going on, they
     should not miss out”

   4.   Some children just have physical difficulties. How would it be best to help them at school?


     “Physical changes. Costs a lot of money”.
     Children felt that pupils with a disability should choose which school to
     go to.
     “Physical help wherever they need it”.
     “Teacher resources might be affected if it‟s not staffed properly”.


   5.   Should children with a lot of needs go to a local school with extra help or travel to a
        separate school?

     “Some children will need to travel because the schools are not
     specialised enough” - (Several comments from children similar to this).
     “Let child choose, the child knows best”.
     “They should go to a normal school because then they could make
     friends and would not have to go and travel really far to a special
     school”.
Consultation with Children and Young People – Final Report April 2006               page 17 of 29


   6.     Some children need so much help they can‟t go to school near home. What do you think
          about a local school being changed to be able to provide this help?

        “Could benefit the school which would be recognised for looking after
        kids well”.
        “They should put a special school next to a mainstream school and
        then they can do some subjects together and some apart so they
        experience both”.


   7.     Some children‟s behaviour is extremely difficult and they cannot go to their local school.
          What sort of school should they go to?

        A lot of children felt that pupils with behaviour problems should be
        taught at home.

   8.     What are your views on making no changes and keeping all the current special schools and
          resource bases the same as they are now?

        “The government should pay for new special schools to be built next to
        local schools so this it is better for the kids and they can choose”.
        “Schools should change to make sure all children needs are met”.
        Equality is a big issue. Generally pupils felt there should be more
        fairness and equality. More choice and listening to what pupils say.
        “Because you are disabled does not mean you should be treated
        differently”.
Consultation with Children and Young People – Final Report April 2006             page 18 of 29

                               Park view School - Year 9

   1.   How could special schools and mainstream schools work together to give all children the
        help they need?

     “Special school teachers could train normal school teachers how to
     work with children that have disabilities”.

   2.   People who work in special schools know about helping children with lots of needs.
        Should they help those who work in other schools? How could they do this?

      “These people should go to mainstream schools and teach the staff
     how to deal with children that have special needs”.

   3.   Do you think that children with different sorts of special need could go to the same
        school?
     “If a child was maybe blind but everything else was working as a normal
     child they should be aloud (sic) to go to a normal school but someone
     with autism should go to a special school where they can be looked
     after properly”.

   4.   Some children just have physical difficulties. How would it be best to help them at school?


      “Treat them just like any other child but if they needed extra help with
     certain things a trained member of staff should be hired to work with the
     student”.

   5.   Should children with a lot of needs go to a local school with extra help or travel to a
        separate school?

     “They should go to a local school with extra help because we don't
     want them to feel isolated”.


   6.   Some children need so much help they can‟t go to school near home. What do you think
        about a local school being changed to be able to provide this help?

     “I think it is good and fair because they will be treated like normal
     people and they will not have to go to school few away”.


   7.   Some children‟s behaviour is extremely difficult and they cannot go to their local school.
        What sort of school should they go to?
     “They should go to a behaviour school and once they have gotten better
     behaviour go back to a mainstream school”.


   8.   What are your views on making no changes and keeping all the current special schools
        and resource bases the same as they are now?

      “They should change depending on the needs the child has, and all of
     the children‟s' needs should be discussedYear 10 parents, teachers,
                         Park view School - with the
     SENCOs, GPs etc”.
Consultation with Children and Young People – Final Report April 2006             page 19 of 29

                               Park view School - Year 10

1 How could special schools and mainstream schools work together to give all children the help
they need?

       “They could come together and have a meeting on how they could
      work together”.
      “Get more pupils from the special to attend normal schools because by
      sending a disabled person to a special school they would feel like they
      are different and weird and there is something wrong with them”.


2. People who work in special schools know about helping children with lots of needs. Should
they help those who work in other schools? How could they do this?

      “Special training courses should be available to train other teachers
      how to deal with special need kids”.
      “They could arrange training days with staff from special schools”.

3 Do you think that children with different sorts of special need could go to the same school?


      “Yes why not. They are still human. If they are ill or have something
      wrong with them they should not be adondoned and neglected. They
      probably need a little more attention than normal kids, but they need it,
      some can‟t see, hear or walk. We can so why not help and give them
      something special in their education”

4    Some children just have physical difficulties. How would it be best to help them at school?

      “Make allowances”.
      “Give them help they need”.
      “Make the corridors wider”.
      “They can have a mentor who will help”.

5 Should children with a lot of needs go to a local school with extra help or travel to a separate
school?

      “Nobody with any disorder or need should have to be sent to a
      separate school”.
      “Normal schools should be able to look after any type of pupil”.


6 Some children need so much help they can‟t go to school near home. What do you think about
a local school being changed to be able to provide this help?

      “This is an excellent idea, it shows the generosity of the community”.
      “They could be home schooled because it will be easier”.
      “I think it is a good idea for a local school to be changed to a special
      school”.
Consultation with Children and Young People – Final Report April 2006          page 20 of 29



7 Some children‟s behaviour is extremely difficult and they cannot go to their local school. What
sort of school should they go to?

     “They should not go to their local school because if they don't learn
     they are wasting teaching time and stopping others from learning”.
     “It is better to send them to a school to change that person to become
     good”.


8 What are your views on making no changes and keeping all the current special schools and
resource bases the same as they are now?

      “Things should change”.
     “Local schools should provide extra help for those who need it”.
     “Change a bit because everyone is equal and they should all be treated
     equally”.
Consultation with Children and Young People – Final Report April 2006            page 21 of 29

                                    Parkview - Year 11

   1.   How could special schools and mainstream schools work together to give all children the
        help they need?

     “They can help each other by special needs teachers giving beneficial
     advice to normal teachers to enhance their knowledge on how to help
     children they find difficult”.
     “This would overall improve the standard of the school”.

   2.   People who work in special schools know about helping children with lots of needs.
        Should they help those who work in other schools? How could they do this?

     “They could come for a few hours twice a week to help and to talk to
     the teachers about their expertise”.

   3.   Do you think that children with different sorts of special need could go to the same
        school?

     “Their disability might not be affecting their ability or their work so why
     shouldn‟t they provide facilities that are provided in mainstream schools
     are”.
   4.   Some children just have physical difficulties. How would it be best to help them at school?


      “They could have more teachers to help them”.
     “Have facilities for them to make their atmosphere safer”.
   5.   Should children with a lot of needs go to a local school with extra help or travel to a
        separate school?

     “The local school should have separate classes for children in need”.
     “They should go to a local school because it is going to be hard for
     them to travel”.


   6.   Some children need so much help they can‟t go to school near home. What do you think
        about a local school being changed to be able to provide this help?

     “This is helpful because those children will be given a fairer chance to
     get an education”.
     “If you change the school where do the normal children go?”


   7.   Some children‟s behaviour is extremely difficult and they cannot go to their local school.
        What sort of school should they go to?

     “They should go to a special school where they teach people how to
     speak well to others and how to listen well and how to behave while in
     lessons then by going to that special school they could improve their
     behaviour more”.

   8.   What are your views on making no changes and keeping all the current special schools
        and resource bases the same as they are now?

     “They should change because the children that go to special school are
     usually labelled and stick out from the normal ones in school”.
Consultation with Children and Young People – Final Report April 2006            page 22 of 29

                                    Queensbury School

   1.   How could special schools and mainstream schools work together to give all children the
        help they need?

             More money for equipment for literacy and numeracy.
             Joint meetings for school councils to share ideas.
             Joint sporting activities.
             Hearing aid equipment.
             Student exchange.
             Architects working with schools.

   2.   People who work in special schools know about helping children with lots of needs.
        Should they help those who work in other schools? How could they do this?

             Swap school councils, teaching assistants, learning mentors.
             Learn sign language.
             Special school staff to teach each other staff special skills.

   3.   Do you think that children with different sorts of special need could go to the same
        school?


             Good idea - can then understand others needs and appreciate
              other people‟s problems.
             Building would needs lifts, ramps and visually impaired
              resources.
             All staff to learn sign language.
              Not a good idea to have same school as pupils with behavioural
              difficulties, children may copy behaviour.


   4.   Some children just have physical difficulties. How would it be best to help them at school?


             Ramps, wide gangways, disabled toilets, lifts, automatic doors.
             Tarmac play areas and better equipment.

   5.   Should children with a lot of needs go to a local school with extra help or travel to a
        separate school?

             They may be bullied.
             Special schools work at a slower rate to help pupils.
             Yes, less travelling. Yes, everyone should be treated the same.
             Your friends will be in local schools.
             Need to be with pupils who are the same.
             Need to be with pupils whoa re the same.
             There will be larges classes in local school, less in special.
Consultation with Children and Young People – Final Report April 2006           page 23 of 29


   6.   Some children need so much help they can‟t go to school near home. What do you think
        about a local school being changed to be able to provide this help?

             Should be more secondary schools in my area, if this was the
              case I may prefer to go there with extra TA help.
             Split response on minibus travel.
             “I would want to look first. I like my school, I like being picked up
              by the mini bus and the lessons are at my level”.
             Too many pupils at local school.
         
   7.   Some children‟s behaviour is extremely difficult and they cannot go to their local school.
        What sort of school should they go to?

             Generally felt that children with extreme behaviour problems
              should be taught separately.
             However when their behaviour improves they should by
              integrated back.

   8.   What are your views on making no changes and keeping all the current special schools
        and resource bases the same as they are now?

             Should stay the same; the children generally liked their school
              and opportunities given with the specialism.
             Children with behaviour problems should go to separate schools.
             Children who bully other children should go to separate schools.
Consultation with Children and Young People – Final Report April 2006   page 24 of 29


                                   Springfield House

   1. How could special schools and mainstream schools work together to give all
      children the help they need?

            Share teaching skills - more training.
            Visit other schools - share ideas from children.
            Work across schools - share activities.


   2. People who work in special schools know about helping children with lots of
      needs. Should they help those who work in other schools? How could they
      do this?

            Learn from each other.
            Learn how to manage difficult behaviour/control children


   3. Do you think that children with different sorts of special need could go to the
      same school?

            Yes but have special units, different classes.
            Difficult to have a school that suits everyone.

   4. Some children just have physical difficulties. How would it be best to help
      them at school?

            Specially designed buildings.
            New schools.
            Facilities for blind children.
            Ramps and wheelchair access.

   5. Should children with a lot of needs go to a local school with extra help or
      travel to a separate school?

            Would be good if they had a special unit.
            Need a school nearer home to cut down on travelling.
            Small classes and good staff are important first.



   6. Some children need so much help they can‟t go to school near home. What
      do you think about a local school being changed to be able to provide this
      help?

            Nice environment is the most important thing.
            Need teacher who knows how to handle difficult behaviour.
            Need to have people to help and understand.
Consultation with Children and Young People – Final Report April 2006   page 25 of 29




   7. Some children‟s behaviour is extremely difficult and they cannot go to their
      local school. What sort of school should they go to?

            At special school whole staff can help children behave better.
            "My school could help my old school and show them how to help me
             and my needs.”



   8. What are your views on making no changes and keeping all the current
      special schools and resource bases the same as they are now?

            School should stay they same.
            I really like my school.
            I like the grass and the trees.
Consultation with Children and Young People – Final Report April 2006              page 26 of 29


                                             St Barnabas School

   1.   How could special schools and mainstream schools work together to give all children the help they need?

           Assistant from a special school could help with special needs
           Ramps and toilets for physically disabled.


   2.   People who work in special schools know about helping children with lots of needs. Should they help
        those who work in other schools? How could they do this?

           Swap jobs for a week to learn different ways of teaching.
           Exchange visits.
           Share ideas.
           Telephone advice.


   3.   Do you think that children with different sorts of special need could go to the same school?

           Too many buildings/schools would be needed to meet all needs.
           Children should be able to go to the same school.
           Nice for children with different needs to mix.
           Special areas in school for different needs.
           Children can all help each other


   4.   Some children just have physical difficulties. How would it be best to help them at school?

           Need for more special equipment.
           Building need to be adapted, ramps and slopes.
           Stair lifts.


   5.   Should children with a lot of needs go to a local school with extra help or travel to a separate school?

           All agreed children should go to a local school - one child said with extra, extra help.
           Local school at primary age then a special school at secondary age.


   6.   Some children need so much help they can‟t go to school near home. What do you think about a local
        school being changed to be able to provide this help?

           All agreed children should go to a local school - one child said with extra, extra help.
           Local school at primary age then a special school at secondary age.


   7.   Some children‟s behaviour is extremely difficult and they cannot go to their local school. What sort of
        school should they go to?

           All said special unit for children with behaviour problems.


   8.   What are your views on making no changes and keeping all the current special schools and resource
        bases the same as they are now?

           100% - said things need to change.
           "Have more mixed school where children play together but learn in different groups according to
            needs"


                                            St Paul’s Community

   1.   How could special schools and mainstream schools work together to give all children the help they need?
Consultation with Children and Young People – Final Report April 2006              page 27 of 29



             Share ideas and buildings.
             Work together and share activities like football matches.
             Pupils and teachers should participate together.

   2.   People who work in special schools know about helping children with lots of needs. Should they help
        those who work in other schools? How could they do this?




   3.   Do you think that children with different sorts of special need could go to the same school?




   4.   Some children just have physical difficulties. How would it be best to help them at school?


             Separate schools are likely to be smaller and responses
              generally favoured small schools

   5.   Should children with a lot of needs go to a local school with extra help or travel to a separate school?




   6.   Some children need so much help they can‟t go to school near home. What do you think about a local
        school being changed to be able to provide this help?




   7.   Some children‟s behaviour is extremely difficult and they cannot go to their local school. What sort of
        school should they go to?

             "Pupils who can't behaviour should go to a school or Centre that
              can help with their behaviour as well as do lots of different
              activities that they may not be able to do in a big mainstream
              school"
   8.   What are your views on making no changes and keeping all the current special schools and resource
        bases the same as they are now?
Consultation with Children and Young People – Final Report April 2006              page 28 of 29


                                            Wilson Stuart School

   1.   How could special schools and mainstream schools work together to give all children the help they need?

             Pupils from each sort of school can visit each other.
             Projects, Enterprise days and inclusive activities will help
              develop inclusion.

   2.   People who work in special schools know about helping children with lots of needs. Should they help
        those who work in other schools? How could they do this?

             We should help train teachers in our school but we don't want
              our teacher and TAs to go to other schools because who would
              help us?
   3.   Do you think that children with different sorts of special need could go to the same school?


             Special needs can be so different it would be difficult for the
              teachers to look after a lot of different needs in one class and I
              might get left out.

   4.   Some children just have physical difficulties. How would it be best to help them at school?


             Children listed a wide range of specialist facilities that they would
              need to help them, along with trained support staff.

   5.   Should children with a lot of needs go to a local school with extra help or travel to a separate school?

             Pupils should go to schools that help them with their needs best,
              rather than the school that is around the corner.

   6.   Some children need so much help they can‟t go to school near home. What do you think about a local
        school being changed to be able to provide this help?

             It is a good idea but it will be too expensive and take too long.
             It will not be possible to change all schools to meet everyone's
              needs.

   7.   Some children‟s behaviour is extremely difficult and they cannot go to their local school. What sort of
        school should they go to?

             They should go to a school where they can't harm anyone.


   8.   What are your views on making no changes and keeping all the current special schools and resource
        bases the same as they are now?

     I like my school and don't want to go to a different school or make
     changes to it but I want things to change for others who don't get all the
     help they need.
Consultation with Children and Young People – Final Report April 2006   page 29 of 29


Appendix 3

Text of letter to all pupils responding to the consultation on the Strategy for Special
Provision

April 2008

Dear Pupils

Thank you very much for sending us your ideas for how we could improve the help and
support we give to children with special needs in schools in Birmingham. Over 800 of you
sent in your thoughts and we enjoyed reading all of them. Here is a quick summary of what
you told us:

You said that you were happy at your schools. You liked the idea of mainstream and
special schools working more closely together and gave us lots of creative suggestions.
Some of you thought it would be difficult to help children with different kinds of difficulty if
they all went to the same school. All of you said that children who had really difficult
behaviour should go to a different school until their behaviour had got better enough to not
hurt others or stop them learning.

Many of you were worried that it would cost a lot of money to make schools Ok for
wheelchairs but you still thought it was a good idea to try, so that more children could go to
a school nearer their home. You reminded us how important it was that all children were
safe, cared for and got help to learn.

Children who went to school in a taxi or minibus did not say this was a problem for them.
You said you felt safe going to and from school in this way. You reminded us that some
pupils could not walk to school, however near it was, and you hoped they could get help if
they needed it.

All your ideas have been put together in a report for the group of people who will meet in
June to decide what to do next. (You can read the full report if you want at
www.bgfl.org/cypconsultation.) They will look at your ideas and the suggestions from
other working groups. They will then make a plan. Parts of this plan might take 10 years to
happen so please don‟t worry that your school will change overnight. You told us about
how much you liked your school and that the help you got was good….we will not make
things worse for you. When the final plan is written we will tell you about it.

Please thank the staff who helped you to send in your ideas. They did a great job!

Your views are very important so thank you again.



Fiona Wallace
Chair of the Consultation with Children and Young People Group

								
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