Special needs student exclusions in funding spotlight

School students in class (Getty)
School students in class (Getty)

Special education is in the spotlight for a second time in a week following a report that claims high needs students are more likely to be informally removed or excluded.

This comes after revelations autistic children have been put into isolation rooms as a way of dealing with their behaviour.

A report by YouthLaw claims special education students were grossly over-represented among children informally removed or excluded from schools.

Berhampore School Principal, Mark Potter, says these incidents show a severe lack of funding in the sector.

"There needs to be more investment in the pre-service training for teacher, so they're better prepared once they actually come across a child who might have varying needs. There also needs to be better resourcing within the system itself," he says.

Mr Potter says there is no need for teachers to exclude children from school because of their disabilities.

"They're not sure what to do about it, so the tendency is to get some kind of break or time out, which often results in these kind of temporary or Kiwi suspensions," he says.

The NZEI is calling for more funding and specialist training to help solve the problem of special needs kids being excluded from school.