Special educational needs and disabilities Contents


231.The responsibility of conducting this inquiry and producing this report has sat heavily on our shoulders. We have carefully considered many of the issues that have arisen throughout our inquiry. We recognise that for many, this is not an inquiry, it is their daily life. In September this year, the Department for Education announced its own review of the SEND reforms.667 Five years on from the Children and Families Act 2014, this is a timely and prudent exercise.

232.However, the weight of the evidence, gathered through our inquiry and by others in their own work, reviews and experiences, is clear. The system is not working—yet. There are clear and fundamental problems that need fixing now, not left waiting on the outcome of another review. Apparently random examples of children getting good support are not enough. A reliance on relationships, luck or family circumstance is not enough. Families are in crisis, local authorities are under pressure, schools are struggling. And they cannot wait for the outcome of another review: they have waited patiently for long enough.

The Government must act decisively and soon. It must implement our recommendations with immediate effect and move swiftly to address the many other problems that we identify in our report. A generation of children depends on it.

667 Department for Education, ‘Major review into support for children with special educational needs’, accessed 23 September 2019

Published: 23 October 2019