Westminster schools to benefit from £2.1m cash boost creating places for children with special educational needs

Up to 50 new school places for children with special educational needs (SEN) are to be created in Westminster by 2021.

In total, 11 schools across the city will receive more than £2.1million to help increase provision and fund new facilities for pupils.

The funding from central government, aims to improve special provision for children and young people with Education, Health and Care Plans (EHCPs). Schools were invited to bid for the capital funding earlier in the year.

Councillor Timothy Barnes, cabinet member for economic development, education and skills at Westminster City council, said: “We have listened to what families have said they need and want for their children.

“This funding will help provide everything from a simple changing bench for disabled children to more classroom places so that they can attend local schools.”

Some projects have already been delivered – All Souls Church of England School got £270,000 to set up provision for children with autism; Westminster Special Schools received £380,000 to increase its capacity and improve its outdoor space for learning.

The additional projects in the pipeline are:
  • ARK Atwood Primary Academy – £20,000 to create a new dedicated teaching area for children with autism
  • Barrow Hill Junior School – £70,000 to improve entrance facilities for children with SEN
  • Churchill Gardens Primary Academy – £8,000 to install a changing bench for disabled children accessing short-breaks
  • Gateway Academy – £10,000 to improve provision for children with autism by creating a new dedicated teaching area which recognises sensor needs
  • St Marylebone Bridge School – £50,000 to improve the school’s sports’ centre
  • Millbank Academy – £500,000 for building works to provide extra places for children
  • Queens Park Primary School – £10,000 to reconfigure classrooms to provide more space for pupils
  • Robinsfield Infant School – £50,000 to reconfigure classrooms
  • St Augustine’s C of E High School – £200,000 to improve acoustics for pupils with hearing impairments
  • Wilberforce Primary School – £100,000 towards installing a new lift

Hend Rahman, chairwoman of Make it Happen, the Parent Carer Forum, said: “As a parent of a child with SEN, it’s important to know that our voices have been heard.

“This funding will improve the lives of families and help to continue to build positive relationships between parents and their schools.”

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