Mum’s battle over special needs room

Picture is Katie Hughes(right) who is leading a campaign along with other parents for Sheffield Springs Academy to re-instate the special educational needs room
Picture is Katie Hughes(right) who is leading a campaign along with other parents for Sheffield Springs Academy to re-instate the special educational needs room
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PARENTS and pupils have called for a Sheffield school to reinstate a special educational needs room.

Mother-of-one Katie Hughes is leading a campaign for Springs Academy, Arbourthorne, to bring back a classroom designed to cater for its youngsters with learning difficulties.

Ms Hughes says she sent her son Robert, who has a form of autism and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, to the school in September believing he would be able to access the separate support via the Special Educational Needs room.

But the facility is no longer on offer to her 11-year-old and other children like him.

A Sheffield Springs Academy spokesman said they had made ‘positive developments’.

“We have undertaken a restructure of our inclusion team and have re-evaluated our support for our most vulnerable children to ensure we meet all their needs appropriately,” he said.

“We have also reviewed staffing to ensure children’s needs are met within the classroom, rather than needing to be withdrawn.

“We have made some very strong external appointments to the inclusion team in school, and have also engaged with outstanding external advice in order to ensure our provision is of the highest standard.

“We encourage regular discussions with parents, so we ensure they feel confident the needs of their children are being fully met.

“If parents have concerns about any issue, we would encourage them to make contact with the school, and then to arrange to discuss with the appropriate staff.”

Ms Hughes, 32, of Gleadless, has submitted a complaint to schools watchdog Ofsted.

She said: “It is wrong what they have done. Robert has been struggling in classes. He has a needs statement and I don’t think the school is meeting it.”

Ofsted said Ms Hughes should raise concerns with the Department of Education.