On Friday (January 14), East Sussex County Council’s lead member for education Bob Standley is set to consider plans to create a special education facility at All Saints CE Primary School in Sidley.
The facility would cater for up to 12 pupils with Special Education Needs and Disability (SEND).
It would be the latest in a series of such facilities established by the county council as it seeks to increase SEND places in light of a rise in children with Education, Health and Care Plans (EHCPs).
In a report to be considered by Cllr Standley, a council officer said: “Over the last few years, the local authority has been implementing its strategy to develop more places for SEND pupils. This includes securing new free special schools and the development of more specialist facilities within mainstream schools.
“The local authority undertook a consultation in 2021 on its SEND place planning strategy. Feedback from the consultation agreed that a priority for the local authority should be the creation of specialist provision in mainstream primary schools for pupils with neuro-diverse profiles, such as Autism Spectrum Disorder and associated needs, in the Rother area.
“The local authority would therefore like to establish a facility for up to 12 pupils at All Saints CE Primary School in Bexhill to address this.”
The facility would be based within the former nursery building on the All Saints site, although some internal adaptations will be required. Funding for these adaptations has been identified within the local authority’s capital programme.
According to council papers, a consultation carried out late last year saw ‘overwhelming support’ for the proposals.
If given the go ahead by Cllr Standley, the establishment of the facility would need to go through a further statutory consultation process. A final decision could not be made until this process has been completed, but is expected to be made in April.