The campaign against cuts in Early Years SEN Service

As many of you know, the campaign to oppose cuts in Early Years SEN Service is now starting to get media coverage. The Argus, has covered the story: here

The campaign also featured on ITV Meridian news: here
Please share these links wherever you can!

A website has now been set up so that parents can tell their stories about how these vital services have supported them and explain the devastation the cuts will cause: here 
The twitter address is: @SOSServicesB_H

Please continue to tweet  @BrightonHoveCC and @PinakiGhoshal (The Director of Children’s Services) using the #SOSBrighton to explain why you oppose the cuts.

Please continue to spread the word by forwarding the link below to your friends and asking them to sign the petition here:

We will soon be posting details of an event you can attend to show the strength of our opposition to these cuts.


Cuts in the Pre-School Special Educational Needs Service in Brighton and Hove

The National Union of Teacher’s Representative of Brighton and Hove’s Pre-School Special Educational Needs Service has issued this press release.

The National Union of Teachers staff in Brighton and Hove City Council’s Pre-School Special Educational Needs Service (PRESENS) believe strongly that the council’s proposed redesign of the Learning Support Services, which entails significantly reducing the number of pre-school teachers, and deleting the highly regarded PRESENS team from the council’s structure, will result in some of the most vulnerable pre-school children with Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND) receiving a significantly diminished service. It is likely that these cuts will damage these children’s life-long educational outcomes.

In addition to the likely negative impact on educational outcomes for children, these cuts could eventually cost the council more money than it saves, if parents and carers lose confidence in the council’s ability to make good provision for pre-school children with SEND and their families.

We understand that the budgetary pressures that have forced the council to consider these cuts have been caused by central government’s reduction to the funding of local authorities.

We accept the need to redesign the Learning Support Services, but we would ask the council to work with us and find a way to redesign the service in ways which preserve quality teaching provision for vulnerable pre-school children.

For more detail of the proposals, see Simeon Elliott’s blogpost further down this page.

Simeon Elliott, NUT staff team representative for PRESENS

Paul Shellard, Secretary of Brighton and Hove NUT

What the cuts will mean for Brighton and Hove’s Pre-School Special Educational Needs Service

Below is an important blog by Simeon Elliott a member of the team to be disbanded. Please read it and then please please sign the petition here and spread the word.

“I know this is a long post but I would ask you all to read it as I need to tell you what is happening. Thank you. In all my working life I have never worked in a team as good as the one in which I work: the off-site team of Brighton and Hove’s Pre-School Special Educational Needs Service. This team is greatly valued by all the parents and pre-school settings in the city. We make it possible for children with the most complex special needs and disabilities to be included in mainstream schools. We offer hope to parents and carers at the critical time when they are coming to terms with the severity of their children’s needs.

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One rule for grammar schools, another for the rest of us?

If we can provide additional grammar school places by building annexes to existing schools does that mean we can provide additional local authority comprehensive school places in the same way?

The announcement that a grammar school in Kent is to be allowed to open an annexe in a separate town raises interesting questions for the Free School proposal in Brighton and Hove. The rationale which has always been given by both the Local Authority and the University of Brighton is that a Free School is the only way to provide Brighton with the additional secondary school places it is going to need in the near future. For the Local Authority it is the explanation of why they were happy to support the University of Brighton Free School application while the University of Brighton have said they were happy to respond to the Local Authority’s invitation to put in a bid as part of their ‘civic responsibility’.

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