schools for SEN children - pic by Getty courtesy of CEC

Cheshire East Council has won government backing for two new schools for children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities.

The successful bid means the Department for Education will build two new special schools, in Middlewich and Congleton.

The schools will create 120 places for children and young people from five to 19 years old.

The new schools will support children and young people requiring an education, health and care plan (EHCP).

Such plans assess a child’s special educational needs, the support they need and their aspirations for the future.

Additional special school places means more children and young people can remain in Cheshire East and avoid longer distances to similar schools outside the borough.

The first school will be located at Cledford House in Middlewich and will provide 60 places for children and young people with social, emotional and mental health needs.

Currently around 25% of children with an EHCP have this need.

The second school will be on the Giantswood housing development site in Congleton and will provide 60 places for children and young people with autism spectrum condition.

Deborah Woodcock, executive director of children’s services at Cheshire East Council, said: “This is great news, as the two schools will provide much needed local places for children and young people with special educational needs.

“Our aim is for all schools to be more inclusive, offering the right support to meet the needs of all children and young people.

“By doing this, children can attend a local school, reducing the pressure on school transport costs and our high needs dedicated school grant.

“Both of these are currently overspent due to the increase in demand and lack of local provision.

“We know that having the right school for all children and young people is key to supporting them to achieve their potential and help them to develop the range of skills and experiences they need to equip them for adulthood.

“Alongside the Department for Education, we are now seeking proposals from organisations which are interested in establishing and running the new schools.”

The next stage will call for trusts to apply to establish the new schools.

The council is reaching out to multi academy trusts who may be interested in running the schools.

For further information, contact Create: Schools – the Department for Education’s supplier of support to free school applicants – by visiting:

(Image by Getty, courtesy of CEC, for display purposes only)

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