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We Don't Solve Problems, We Create Markets

Keep-calm-and-drink-kool-aid-15Note: Anne Dachel has been writing about the meteoric rise of special education for almost 18 years. Why is it that the world can "unite" (in some fashion) behind say, climate change or a pandemic, and radically alter behavior? And yet, children suffering and unable to learn goes unnoticed? Money. Our big "problems" are really big markets where billions are at stake.  Color us jaded.  Green, like money.

By Anne Dachel

The BBC is one of the most well-known news outlets in the world, perhaps the most esteemed one out there. Their stories are cited everywhere by other print and broadcasts news sources.

The BBC is supposed to be journalism at its best, giving us thoroughly investigated news reports.

The truth is, the BBC is an example of the epic failure of the media today when it comes to the decline of children in the 21st century. After two decades of following autism coverage from sources all over the world, I can say that the BBC, more than any other news outlet, reports on the massive numbers of special needs children. They do it constantly!

Actually, when it comes to the enormous and ever-increasing costs of special education and the increasing demand because of more and more disabled children flooding British schools, the BBC is more like a foreign visitor who just landed in the country.

It isn’t that the BBC doesn’t report on the soaring costs and numbers, and the fact that students have “more complex needs,” it’s just that they don’t see any real crisis.

A story one day has no relationship to the next story they publish.

The BBC does this kind of reporting on almost a daily basis, so you’d think someone there would ask the million dollar question: WHY ARE THERE ALWAYS MORE DISABLED STUDENTS?

Taken together, the stories about what’s happening in British schools is nothing short of a national emergency. The BBC is dedicated to reporting on it without being the least bit curious about why it’s happening. It makes no sense. Everything keeps getting worse, but by now, it’s just expected.

Here’s why I can say this. Below are some of their stories from the last month. Numbers and costs are always increasing, along with the level of need of so many children. This is now a normal part of education in the UK, and that’s how the BBC covers it.

As you can see, these stories are from everywhere in Britain. (Notice how often AUTISM is a factor in the coverage.)

May 14, 2024, BBC News: Parents' anger over special needs response

Parents have heckled senior councillors at a meeting over delays to assessments for children with special educational needs.

About a dozen parents were at the Essex County Council meeting on Tuesday.

Only about 1% of children in the county receive an assessment for an educational health care plan (EHCP) within the legal time limit of 20 weeks. . . .

Mrs Harding, 39, has a six and ten-year-old with additional needs, including autism, and said she could be waiting up to a year for an assessment to be carried out on her youngest.

The qualified teacher said: "Unfortunately I have not been able to work for the vast majority of two years.

And on the current system for assessments she added: "It is a minefield and it is utterly soul destroying every single day to constantly be emailing and chasing."

May 15, 2024, BBC News:  Special education cost-cuts plan backed by council

Plans to reduce costs within special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) in Warwickshire have been approved by councillors.

SEND spending is forecasted to reach £267m [$338M] by 2028, but by progressing with four new measures in conjunction with a government plan, it could be reduced by up to £115m, [$146M] the council said.

Warwickshire is one of 55 education authorities taking part in the Delivering Better Value programme as SEND spending is vastly outstripping the government funding allocated for it.

. . . The council has now said the current costs situation was "unsustainable" and the government programme would help to mitigate the forecasted overspend. . . .

The council said it has "consistently" increased SEND spending year after year, rising from £78.5m [$99M] in 2021-22 for higher needs, to £90.8m [$1B] in 2022-2023.

(In the story below, the BBC added information on autism from NHS, where we were told, children are born with autism.)

May 16, 2024, BBC News: Family frustrated as daughter left waiting for autism diagnosis

A family have shared their frustration about an 18-month wait for their child to receive an autism diagnosis amid a city-wide freeze in assessments. . . .

Their MP, Labour's Alex Sobel, discovered that all pre-school autism assessments in Leeds had been suspended for six months due to a lack of staff.

 The government said it was "taking action to reduce assessment delays", adding it understood the importance of children having a "timely diagnosis of autism".

"We made £4.2m [$5.3M] available last year to improve services for autistic children and young people, including autism assessment services, and NHS England has published a national framework to help speed up autism assessments," a government spokesperson said.

It had launched a £13m [$16M partnership to improve specialist support for neurodiverse children in primary schools, they added.

[Autism] is not a disease or an illness but a condition somebody is born with.

May 17, 2024, BBC News: EHCP: Councils missing education plan deadlines for children with complex needs 

Thousands of children in England with complex needs are missing out on support as councils fail to meet care plan deadlines, BBC News has found.. . .

BBC News has found eight councils met the deadline in fewer than 5% of cases, from April to December last year.

Councils say growing demand and insufficient funding cause delays. . . .

Examples of extra support might include one-to-one lesson time, or help to learn at home for those with such complex needs that school is unsuitable. . . .

More than 1.5 million pupils in England have special educational needs or disabilities (Send).

The latest figures from the Department for Education show 517,000 children and young people were on an EHCP in 2023 - the highest on record.

The government has said "high-needs funding" for those with complex needs is rising to £10.5bn [$13.3B] in 2024-25 - an increase of more than 60% since 2019-20.

May 18, 2024, BBC News: Children face two-year wait for autism assessment

Children and young people in Lancashire and South Cumbria are facing "unacceptably long waits" of more than two years for autism and ADHD assessments, a report has revealed.

The Reporting from Committees: Escalation and Assurance Report said demand in Lancashire and South Cumbria had "risen exponentially" since 2022.

May 19, 2024, BBC News: Nottinghamshire: Family faces SEND delays despite progress claim 

A local area inspection in 2023 by Ofsted and the Care Quality Commission identified issues with children and young people having to wait too long to have their needs accurately assessed, in order to have an EHCP issued.

 This meant that in Nottinghamshire, four out of five children were waiting longer than the government's target of 20 weeks, and some, with "particularly complex needs", were waiting about 37 weeks.

 Now the county council has pointed to £1.5m [$1.9M] investment in resources, including an additional nine education psychologists to help speed up access to education, health and care needs assessment. . . .

The board's independent chairwoman, Dame Christine Lenehan, said: "We had a disjointed and confused system where people didn't know who was doing what.

May 29, 2024, BBC News: Son will not start school due to SEND row – parents 

Parents say their son will not be starting secondary school in September unless they get the special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) support he needs.

Michelle and Neil, from Warwickshire, were offered a place at St Benedict’s High School in Alcester for their son Mylo.

But they say the 10-year-old, who has ADHD, autism and anxiety, needs a specialist school, as he would “shut down” in a secondary school setting, and have lodged an appeal with Warwickshire County Council. . . .

According to Neil, medical professionals said Mylo would need to be educated in smaller-sized classrooms.

He said they had found a private school that had classrooms of four pupils but the council told them it was too expensive.

May 29, 2024, BBC News: New special school will give 'best start in life'

A new school for children with special educational needs and disabilities has been backed by senior councillors.

The school for 190 children will be the first of its kind to be built in the Rochford district and was agreed by cabinet members on the Tory-run Essex County Council. . . .

According to cabinet reports, the DfE says Essex’s special schools are currently operating at “significantly beyond” their physical capacity.

It is estimated that by 2026, Essex will need an extra 612 special school places to meet the anticipated growth of children and young people with an education health care plan (EHCP) who need a special school place.

May 30, 2024, BBC News: Fight for son's school place 'a nightmare' – mum

A mother has described trying to get her five-year-old son a specialist school place as a "living nightmare".

Sam, from Chester, said the council had disagreed about her son Harrison's needs and placed him in a mainstream school.

The 39-year-old said the "fight" to get him a special education needs and disability (SEND) place was "taking its toll" on the family.

Cheshire West and Chester Council said there was more demand for specialist places than availability. . . .

Cheshire West and Chester Council said: "The aim is to support all young people to access education in a school or setting that can meet their individual needs and within their local community wherever appropriate."

But it said it was working in "incredibly challenging national circumstances" with "demand for special school places outnumbering the actual number of places available".

It said as well as increased demands, costs had gone up "putting pressure on the system".

The authority said it had created 50 more places in September and was planning additional capacity over the next three years.

May 31, 2024, BBC News: Autism care plans rise by nearly 400% since 2015\

The number of under-25s with an autism care plan in North Yorkshire has risen by almost 400%, it has been revealed.

North Yorkshire Council said the significant increase had put the authority under "enormous pressure" to fund support for young people with special educational needs.

Autism is now the most common "primary need" in the county, a council report said.

It blamed a "spiralling" numbers of referrals and inadequate government funding for the situation.

Between 2020 and 2023, the number of plans being funded in the county rose by 43%, compared to a national rate of 33%.

Autism accounts for 39% of the plans in place in North Yorkshire - a 387% increase since 2015.

June 5, 2024, BBC News:  Ex-school's demolition to make way for new special school

A date for the demolition of a former school in Huddersfield has been set as plans to build a new special school in its place move forward. . . .

The site will be the new home of Woodley School and College, which caters for students up to the age of 19 with complex autism. . . .

Another special school in Kirklees, the Joseph Norton Academy, is also going to be moved and rebuilt in Deighton.

June 6, 2024, BBC News: Parents' three-year 'nightmare' over son's ADHD assessment

A boy with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is still waiting for an assessment for the condition three years after originally applying for one, his father has said.

Jack, 14, from Barnsley, who is non-verbal, was diagnosed with autism when he was 18 months old and as he got older he showed behaviour associated with ADHD.

Mark said: “It feels like the demand for ADHD assessments is so high that private clinics are spoilt for choice and can be choosy who they accept. We were just too complex."

June 7, 2024, BBC News: Two new schools set to be built in city for SEND children

Two new schools, which will provide a specialist learning environment for children with additional needs, could be built in Bath.

The land has been held for educational use since the academy closed in 2018, which a report stated had cost the council a net £158,000 [$200K] in 2023. . . .

June 7, 2024, BBC News: New special educational needs units to be created

Two new special educational needs (SEN) units will be created in East Lancashire after the county council's cabinet approved the plans. . . .

Jacqui Old, Lancashire County Council's executive director of education and children's services, said: "The demand for specialist provision continues to increase and we are working hard to create and enhance existing provision so that we can fulfil our statutory duties." . . .

June 10, 2024, NI BBC: Lack of school place for autistic boy 'stressful'

"Kids with special needs are among the most vulnerable in our society and they're getting treated like second-class citizens."

That is according to Christopher Flanagan-Kane from north Belfast, whose 11-year-old son is autistic and is still waiting for a post-primary school place for September.. . .

But the Department of Education (DE) has previously said that there is a big rise in the number of children with special educational needs who require a school place this year. . . .

"They just don't have enough schools to provide for special education."

This very recent story below sums things up quite well. Notice that we hear about mounting deficits, growing demand and a ‘broken system,’ but there is not even the hint of an explanation for why there are so many special needs students.

June 18, 2024, BBC News: Fears for children as special educational needs budgets tighten

Councils in England are forecasting a massive shortfall in budgets for supporting children with special educational needs.

The BBC has found councils face a deficit of almost £1bn [$1.3B] in schools’ funds for these pupils.

Parent groups say they fear children could suffer in a push to cut deficits as demand rises at the same time as councils face growing pressure on their budgets.

Since 2019, the accumulated deficit in England for Special Educational Needs or Disabilities (Send) has reached £3.2bn [$4B],according to the County Council Network, with every sign of the gap between funding and spending increasing since last year.

The BBC contacted 153 councils in England to request their financial forecasts for this year, of which 113 responded.

Sarah Morgan is one of the parents caught up in seeking the right support for a child, having gone through a legal process last year.

Her daughter Isla, aged 11, is autistic and struggling to attend the special school where she has been given a place.

Sarah describes the process of getting Isla’s needs set out in an Education Health and Care Plan (EHCP) as “really hard and overwhelming”.

Like many parents, she resorted to going to a tribunal to get the plan updated.

Official statistics published this month show almost 600,000 children and young people now have an EHCP in England.

These EHCPs mean councils have a legal duty to meet the child or young person's needs.

Last year saw a 26% year-on-year increase in the number of new plans issued across England.

It’s part of a complex picture of growing demand, which councils are struggling to meet from the central government funding they receive for special educational needs and disabilities.

The BBC asked all the local authorities in England about the gap between funding and what they are actually spending out of their high needs budget.

The 100 that responded about the last financial year reported a deficit of £586m [$745M].

When asked about this year, 113 councils, not all the same ones, forecast a collective shortfall of £926m [$1.2B].

The financial pressures have become more visible and urgent, with 38 local authorities entering into bailout agreements with government.

In these “safety valve” deals, they receive some extra funding in return for an agreement to cut Send deficits. . . .

In our BBC investigation, the council with the biggest shortfall in proportion to its funding is not in the government’s bailout programme.

Cheshire East had a budget of around £56m [$71M] for Send for the last financial year, and ended up spending £88m [$1.1B].

Under a special agreement in place with all councils in England until 2026, that deficit is added to what is called a “negative reserve”.

Cllr Sam Corcoran, the Labour leader of the council, describes this as hiding the problem, and says it’s part of a “broken system” that isn’t working for councils or families.

“It means that in 2026 we have a huge problem," he says. "It's a bit like we've put the money on a credit card, and that credit card has to be paid back in two years' time.”

In the meantime, he says the council will have to pay between £3m and £6m in interest on that borrowing.

Cllr Corcoran is also the deputy chair of a cross party network representing County Councils.

Their research suggests that if the deal to keep these deficits off the books isn’t renewed, or the extra money found by 2026, around a quarter of councils might need to ask for a government bailout.

The economists at the Institute for Fiscal Studies has said that, since 2015, meeting Send needs has absorbed around half the cash increase in school spending in England, around £3.5bn [$3.4B].

The National Association of Headteachers has called for any new government to write off the accumulated deficits in council budgets.

At Fishponds Church of England Primary in Bristol, headteacher Michelle Omoboni says she has seen a marked increase in children with additional needs.

Bristol is in a “safety valve” agreement and she is not sure how the council will manage to reduce spending.

For one child who the school thought needed one-to-one support, the top-up funding they received from the council was £81 a month [$102], and the actual staffing cost was £140 [$178] a day. . . .

In every year up to 2029-30, the plan for Bristol says it will receive some extra cash, £4.6m  [$5.8M] this year, in return for putting in place steps to cut the Send deficit from a forecast £64m [$81M]. . . .


None of the main parties mentioned the shortfall in Send budgets directly in their manifestos.

The Conservatives say they would deliver on a promise of 15 more special schools, while Labour promised to increase early intervention and support in mainstream schools.

The Lib Dems say they would establish a national body for Send to manage funding and give local authorities additional funding to meet the rising demand.

The Greens say they would push for £5bn [$5.4B] of Send investment within mainstream schools.

Reform UK did not mention Send in their "contract".

I’m sure politicians, who are even less interested than the press in why this is happening, will call for more funding and more accommodations, but this can’t continue forever.

If the BBC wanted to authentically report the truth, they’d have to admit it hasn’t always been this way, or else schools would be readily able to provide for these children.

When the system ultimately collapses, we will remember how the BBC never asked why Britain was becoming the land of the chronically ill and disabled, but they were right there telling us all about it.

What the BBC is really doing with all this detached coverage is to ensue its place in history when we look back and ask why no one sounded an alarm.


Angus Files

‘If Europe does not wake up, you will all be dead,’ says Naomi Wolf, author of Facing the Beast

Well worth a listen.

Pharma For Prison



We thought that our leaders were people that came from among us.
That after WWI the royalty and ruling class were the ones that really lost that war.
We thought that public health, and a population with high IQs along with common sense was what our nation's leaders wanted.

But apparently they had a plan to put us back into serfdom.

Neil Oliver interview with Tucker Carlson explained beautifully that for only a few generation a large segment of the population has not been slaves. Something that some ruling class above us tends to fix, and if it has lessen our brain power so be it.

Angus Files

Its as if by reporting regularly the viewer's will become desensitised at the same time the BBC and others regurgitate its press releases in lieu of doing actual journalism and investigate the cause.

Pharma For Prison


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