SAVE OUR SPECIAL SCHOOLS IN BRISTOL! Children with Special Educational Needs (SEN) will be forced to bear the brunt of the local authority\'s financial problems, if Bristol City Council gets its way. HITTING THE VULNERABLE HARDEST: Bristol City Council is planning to save money by reducing state special school places, and closing down one of its state special schools. It is absolutely wrong that the most vulnerable members of our society should be paying the price for council finance problems. SEN CHILDEN: TURFED OUT OF THE BEST, INTO THE WORST: Special Schools in Bristol are good, very good or outstanding. But sadly state schools in Bristol have one of the worst records in the country. It is madness to turf children with special needs out of our good schools, into struggling schools. An extra influx of children with extra needs will make the challenges facing Bristol state schools even greater. This is not fair on SEN children whose needs won\'t be met, teachers who will be stretched beyond their capacity, and children without SEN who will inevitably be deprived of attention in class. IT IS THE COUNCIL MISTAKES THAT ARE COSTING SO MUCH! Much of the financial crisis has arisen simply because of the Local Authority\'s mismanagement of the special needs budget and education policy: Bristol City Council has one of the highest rates of appeals to the Special Educational Needs Tribunal in the Country. Substantial numbers of parents are taking cases to Tribunal, and winning. The Local Authority either loses and pays the cost, or climbs down and sends the child to an independent (private) special school at higher cost. All these Tribunal cases show that the council isn\'t performing its duty and SEN children are being denied the care they need and deserve. BY-PASSING STATEMENTING: The Council policy is to bypass statementing to give money straight to state schools to follow the SEN child. But every child with significant greater learning needs than other children has the legal right to be assessed for a statement of special educational needs. Therefore its policy may be well be in breach of the 1996 Education Act. PENALISING THE POOREST: The council is using back-door methods to justify closing our state special schools. But it is our most vulnerable children who will suffer. Many parents cannot afford to pay for their child to go to a private special school. If the Council closes its special schools down, these children will have to go to a mainstream state school. It is time that the people who are really affected have their say: ONE OF OUR STATE SPECIAL SCHOOLS IS THREATENED WITH CLOSURE. SIGN THIS PETITION NOW AND SHOW THAT SPECIAL EDUCATIONAL NEEDS SHOULD BE AT THE FOREFRONT OF OUR EDUCATIONAL PROGRAM. NB: WHEN YOU SIGN THE PETION,THIS SITE WILL ASK IF YOU WANT TO MAKE A DONATION. THIS IS COMPLETELY VOLUNTARY. DO NOT DO SO UNLESS YOU SO WISH.