Can Statements of Special Educational Need help children, who are in public care with local authorities, 'enjoy and achieve'?

Prof Doc Thesis

Horwood, Ben 2008. Can Statements of Special Educational Need help children, who are in public care with local authorities, 'enjoy and achieve'? Prof Doc Thesis University of East London School of Psychology
AuthorsHorwood, Ben
TypeProf Doc Thesis

This research posed two questions. The first question was in three parts: firstly it asked
professionals, including carers, how they explained why Children and Young People in
Public Care were more likely to have a Statement of Special Educational Needs, then
low Statements helped them to "enjoy and achieve" and lastly to describe how
Statements could be improved. Transcripts of focus group discussions and interviews
with carers were thematically analysed. The professionals identified that early traumatic
experiences will lead to a greater number of Statements and that the Statements help
Children and Young People in Public Care "enjoy and achieve" by offering protection
and resources. However, Statements can also stigmatise and label. Statements could be
improved if they adopted a more holistic view of needs, had more than an educational
remit, and included therapeutic provision.
The second question asked the Children and Young People themselves to report their
experiences. Transcripts of individual interviews were scrutinised using Interpretative
Phenomenological Analysis. The participants reported that they have a desire for
normality. They struggle to incorporate the concept of Special Educational Needs and
having a Statement into their sense of self. Statements also have a negative impact on
their perception of themselves. A cost/benefit balance results from having a Statement
and there is a particular emphasis on their sense of difference. There is also a significant
lack of the involvement of the children and young people in the process. The researcher
concludes that the concern over the impact on them is such that there is a need for a
review of the current systems of assessment of Special Educational Needs and resource
allocation through Statements. Recommendations are made to Children's Services.

Publication dates
PrintJan 2008
Publication process dates
Deposited30 Jun 2014
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