Luke Hall MP today met with Year 8 teacher and Outreach lead for Culverhill Special School, Sarah Holt, to discuss the support and protection for the school’s pupils, as well as for those living with disabilities in the wider community.
On the agenda was the legislation and guidance in place to help schools tackle bullying and discrimination, specifically in relation to those with disabilities and special needs, as well as the obstacles disabled adults and young people face in seeking employment.
Following Luke’s meeting with Sarah, who has over 19 years of experience in the field, the MP wrote to Government Minister Victoria Atkins MP, Minister for Equalities, to seek assurances that disabled children do have the necessary protection and support in schools.
Luke acknowledged that the Government has continued to make advances in recognising LGBT rights, and tackling racism and sexism in society. Attention in South Gloucestershire is now turning to supporting the disabled community, with South Gloucestershire Council’s proposals to increase funding for SEND schools at the forefront of this push.
Luke said, “South Gloucestershire Council has taken the bold step to a transfer and refocus £3 million of funding towards our most vulnerable young people - in effect topping up the SENS budget. As our MP I feel that we should be proud that the Government and our Council are area is actively investing in SEND provision right here in our community”.
The MP continued, “I was delighted to meet with Sarah at Culverhill to discuss this matter in greater detail, and will be doing everything I can as our MP to ensure the disabled community here in South Gloucestershire has the upmost help and support.
Sarah Holt added, “It was great that Luke came to visit Culverhill School to discuss issues around learning difficulties, social exclusion and inequality. I am pleased that Luke is going to write to the equalities minister to take our concerns forward and work with us to continue to raise awareness of disability, particularly with regard to employment.”
“Culverhill School is part of Enable Trust and fully committed to supporting the growth of inclusive attitudes and approaches throughout society through Enable Trust Holistic Outreach Service (ETHOS).”
Already, South Gloucestershire Council currently spends £317 per head to top our mainstream schools with SEND pupils, exceeding the English national average of £217. With the MP’s involvement, it is hoped great strides will continue to be made throughout Thonbury and Yate.