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Hannah is a lovely little girl with a real spirit for life and her smile is infectious. However, Hannah was diagnosed with a Severe Speech development delay/speech impairment which makes it increasingly difficult for her to communicate with others.
Hannah has been attending a school which has a specialist unit attached which has the expertise, knowledge and experience to help her to meet her potential and develop in confidence and skills. Since being in the school since January 2012, Hannah has developed so much, she is full of confidence and while her speech is very slow to progress she is more able to communicate her needs and able to interact with others.
Sadly Hannah has not been offered a place in this school for Reception and after an appeal with the local council the decision to offer her a place has been declined due to class size legislation. Class size legislation states that there is to be one teacher per 30 children, teaching assistants do not count in this calculation. The school go over numbers for children with statements.
The reception class for September is at 30 children, so the council are saying that to admitt Hannah would disadvantage the needs of these other children. However, Hannah has a statement pending which will provide her with her own Teaching assistant, which would mean that the impact on the other children would not be an issue.
The local authority which Hannah is under has agreed to give Walsall the money for a full time teaching assistant to support Hannah in this learning environment until her statement is finalised, when they will then continue to provide finanically to support her.
Walsall Admissions are refusing to offer her this place until a statement is given, despite it being at no financial cost to themselves. To not give her this place would mean that Hannah would have to start in another school which would not meet her needs, this is not only moving her away from an environment in which she is settled and confident in but will also have a negative affect on her socially, emotionally, educationally and on her speech. Hannah is at very high risk of selective mutism and her speech problem could get worse without the right help and support, the effects could be irreversable.
All professionals (speech and language, Educational psychologists, advisory teachers, consultants, doctors etc) all agree this is the place for her.
Please sign this petition in support of Hannah to maintain her place and to hopefully overturn Walsall admissions decision which has no firm basis of disagreement, especially as funding, support and assistance is in place.
All children are entitled to an education.... lets make the ALL in this statement true!!
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