15 Aug 2010

Special education grant may be re-examined

11:02 am on 15 August 2010

Associate Education Minister Heather Roy says the special education grant, which goes to every school, may be re-examined.

Recommendations from a review of the special education sector are about to go before Cabinet.

The grant is based on the socioeconomic level of a school's neighbourhood and its roll.

But a former head of Autism New Zealand says this means funding goes to schools with no special needs students, which is unfair.

Former chairman Roy Belton says the funding should be based on the number of students at a school who need it.

Ms Roy says the funding is being re-considered.

Options in the review include:

Whether to close special schools, or use their teachers and resources to bolster the mainstream

Keep matters as they are with a choice between mainstreaming and special schooling

Or allow easier access to special schooling.

More about special education can be heard on Insight on Sunday.