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Special Needs Children

A child has special educational needs if they have a "learning difficulty" which calls for "special educational provision" to be made for them. A "learning difficulty" is where a child has a significantly greater difficulty in learning than the majority of children of their age or has a disability which prevents or hinders them from making use of educational facilities of a kind generally provided for children of the same age in schools.


Several points arise from this:

  • Disability is not in itself a special educational need

  • Educational facilities generally provided in schools refers to mainstream state-funded school, so the fact that a child might be able to manage in home education or in a private school with very small classes is irrelevant

  • Giftedness is not regarded in law as a "special educational need" although a child may be gifted AND have a disability which prevents them from accessing mainstream education

If you have taken a child out of school to home educate them which of the following factors applied

  • You liked what you heard about home education = 27.0%

  • Child not making progress at school = 37.8%

  • Child unhappy at school = 68.2%

  • Child too anxious to attend school = 48.6%

  • Child being bullied 37.2%

  • Child being excluded (temporarily or permanently) = 14.9%

  • No suitable school in area = 12.8%

  • Disagreement over allocated school place = 6.1%

  • Someone suggested/recommended home education = 14.2%

  • Other = 20.3%

  • Source 2016 Parents Survey

The earlier a child can be diagnosed and an effective programme of treatment and assistance can be put in place, the greater the chances of helping that child reach their full potential. This is why we place the emphasis on early intervention.

You do not need to wait for a formal diagnosis to begin helping your child. At such a young age, intervention will be a way of life and will be enjoyable and rewarding for both you and your baby or toddler.

As a parent, you will be able to tell if something isn’t ‘right’ very early on. It is then a race against time to get your child the help and assistance they need as quickly as possible, setting up new learning patterns that are specifically designed to help children facing the challenges of the autistic spectrum and other learning difficulties such as language delay. A young, healthy mind is eager to learn, to grow and to develop. If that mind has the right coaching, guidance and assistance, it can develop into a healthy, well-adjusted adult that can reach its full potential. This is why early intervention is so important. Children suffering from behaviour disorders and those on the autistic spectrum may be reluctant to interact normally. But with the right stimulation, they can be as eager to learn new skills as any other child.

You don’t have to have a diagnosis in order to talk to us or begin an intervention. The earlier you begin intervention, the better the results. Your child may get to the stage that they do so well that they may not even need a diagnosis. And intervention isn’t as scary as it sounds - it’s about teaching in the natural environment and encouraging the child’s natural curiosity to encourage it to change destructive behaviour patterns into constructive ones. We achieve this by teaching the child new motivations and new language, social and behaviour skills.

We put as much emphasis on listening as on teaching or counselling – listening to both the child and the family. In this way, we can understand the individual challenges faced by each child and, with the help of the family, our expert behaviour analysts can develop a programme that will help the child in everyday situations, expand their social skills and reduce the chances of the child feeling isolated or alienated. By incorporating applied behaviour analysis and verbal behaviour techniques, we can build up a relationship with your child at an early age and encourage them to develop their communication and social skills.

Our aim is to help every child lead as normal a life as possible. By introducing positive learning patterns at a very early age, we can help to prevent destructive behaviour patterns from becoming established. If left, these destructive patterns can be much harder to redirect into positive learning, which is why early intervention is so effective. Whilst the child is still in the optimum learning stage, experienced psychologists and behaviour analysts can gently guide the child in the right direction, helping both them and their families to create a positive environment and initiating acceptable responses to social situations.

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