On May 30th, Inclusion Ireland addressed the issue of reduced timetables for children with disabilities at the Oireachtas Education and Skills Committee.
Mark O’Connor, Community Engagement Manager with Inclusion Ireland, told the committee that children with a disability were being denied their right to an education by being put on short school days. This common but hidden practice significantly impacts on the education and wellbeing of the child and parents involved. In rare occasions a parent is told to wait outside of the school as the child may only be in school for an hour.
Inclusion Ireland asked for:
- The commencement of the Education for Persons with Special Educational Needs (EPSEN) Act
- Short school day use to be stopped
- Greater therapy and Child and Adult Mental Health Services (CAMHS) to support schools and children
- Better special education training for teachers in the sector and
- Monitoring and appeals of this practice in schools.
Inclusion Ireland and the Technical University of Ireland will be conducting further research on this issue. If your child has experienced a short school day and you would like to take part in the research contact firstname.lastname@example.org
You can watch the presentations at the Oireachtas Committee meeting at this link
You can read Inclusion Ireland's submission to the Committee at this link