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Government expands support for pupils with SEND

New schools providing dedicated support for over 2,000 children with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) are to open in 16 areas across England. 

From Bury to Surrey to Solihull, the schools will provide vital specialist spaces for pupils whose needs cannot be met in mainstream education. A competition for academy trusts to run the schools will be launched in the coming days.   

The announcement follows investment of 105 million confirmed by the chancellor at this year's spring budget, and is part of the government's plan that is delivering 60,000 more special school places the largest ever expansion in capacity. This is helping to increase capacity, following a decrease in pupils in special schools from 1997 to 2010.

It comes as a further 7 special free schools are one step closer to opening in Merton, Cambridgeshire, Kent, and Norfolk to create over 1,000 places as the trusts have now been selected to run them.  

The government is sticking to the plan to ensure every child can receive the education they need to fulfil their potential and be well prepared for adulthood and employment. 

The government has already opened 108 schools as part of the special free schools programme since 2010, with a further 93 planned to open in future years. 

Special schools ensure pupils with special needs such as autism, emotional and behaviour disorders, severe learning difficulties and more can flourish thanks to specially trained teachers, programmes, and equipment.