Newlife the Charity for Disabled Children welcomes today's news from Minister for Vulnerable Children and Families Edward Timpson regarding a £215million cash injection for pupils with special educational needs and disabilities.
The funding will be spread over three years from 2018, with every local authority in England and Wales getting at least £500,000.
Newlife Head of Operations Stephen Morgan said: "As the UK's leading charity provider of specialist equipment for children with disabilities and terminal illness, Newlife welcomes this announcement to expand and improve SEND (special educational needs and disabilities) provision. As these changes will come in during 2018, we anticipate in the meantime that we will continue to come under pressure to supply vital equipment that will change lives in the classroom.
"This financial boost is very much needed by local statutory services as charities like Newlife have been increasingly plugging the funding gap. In the past five years we have seen applications for essential equipment rise by 64 per cent; many of these have been for items such as wheelchairs and walking frames to improve mobility within the school environment and for seating and communication aids so that children with disabilities can make the most of classroom opportunities."
Mr Morgan added: "We look forward to seeing how this will impact on individual children's Education, Health and Care Plans to ensure they get the right equipment at the right time. However, we should recognise that while this will help children at school, those same children will still have an urgent need for equipment at home, in hospital and hospices and within their communities. Newlife will continue to work with government and local policy makers to meet these needs."
Pictured: Newlife provided Lucy with specialist radio aids which has allowed her to make excellent progress at school.