Funding for special schools summer fun

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Pupils at special schools will be able to enjoy summer schemes this year thanks to funding from Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council.

Members backed a motion at the monthly meeting on April 30, calling for equitable access to summer schemes and programmes for children and young people with special needs.

As part of the proposals, special schools will each receive funding of up to £5,000 to deliver a summer scheme.

The proposal stated: “The practical needs for children and young people with severe/more complex additional needs, are best met through the provision of schemes/programmes delivered by the five special schools. To this end, and to support equitable access for children and young people with additional and special needs, it was proposed that the council make a contribution up to a maximum of £5,000 to each special school in the borough.”

Voicing support for the proposal, Cllr Stephen Ross said: “There are a number of additional needs schools in the Threemilewater DEA and I know that parents and the schools will welcome this.”

Seconding the council item, Ald Mandy Girvan added: “It’s important we give the same opportunities to the most vulnerable children in our borough as we do to able bodied children.”

Backing the initiative, Cllr Annmarie Logue said: “I support the equitable approach by council. I know there have been requests through the years for access to these sort of summer schemes.

“I recognise we have a diverse young population out there with special needs and children who are disabled.

“I really hope the schools take up on this offer.”