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Special Educational Needs

Most UK boarding schools will claim that they offer separate provision for special needs children (i.e children with learning difficulties). However, the top academic schools only offer limited facilities and such schools might only be prepared to consider very mild dyslexics. (Let’s call these schools Category 1) Conversely, there are some excellent boarding schools, which have very well staffed SEN sections able to cope with a range of conditions including dyslexia, dyscalculia, dyspraxia and ADHD, whilst absorbing these children into the normal curriculum. (Let’s call these Category 2) They are very unlikely to take children with behavioural problems likely to disrupt school life, especially in boarding houses. Another problem is that they usually have strict quotas on how many they will accept.

Further down the spectrum there are excellent schools focussed almost entirely on special needs children, equipped not only with Special Learning Centres, but also curriculum options specially suited to SEN children. (Category 3) At the furthest end of the spectrum are very small private boarding schools, set up exclusively for children with severe learning difficulties or behavioural problems, where one-on-one supervision is necessary, (Category 4) but we do not list these schools in this website.

We are often approached by parents who want their SEN child to be in a “normal school” with SEN provision (ie what we have described as Category 2). However, the level of SEN provision in these schools can sometimes be lightweight and we sometimes counsel parents that Category 3 can be more suitable.

If you would like bespoke advice on an appropriate boarding school for your SEN child, then either phone +44 (0) 1622 813870 or fill in the enquiry form in the following link. Note that we do charge a fee for these placements, depending on the complexity of the case. We will need to see an Educational Psychologists report or we can recommend specialists in the UK to carry out these assessments.