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COURT BACKS LANCASHIRE CC IN SPECIAL NEEDS SCHOOL DECISION

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A Lancashire couple's attempt to have their brain-damaged son admitted to a mainstream school has failed. ...
A Lancashire couple's attempt to have their brain-damaged son admitted to a mainstream school has failed.

Peter and Wendy Crane want their son Niki, 14, to attend their local secondary school, Tarleton High School.

But their hopes were crushed when Lancashire CC, instead decided Niki, who has 'severe learning difficulties' should attend a school for children with special needs, The Elms in Preston.

Believing Niki would be better off in a mainstream school with some specialist support, the Cranes appealed to a Special Educational Needs Tribunal (SENT) to overrule the county council.

But the tribunal accepted the council's argument that to allow Niki to attend Tarleton High School would be 'detrimental to the education of other pupils' since it did not have the resources to cope with him.

The Cranes then took their battle to London's high court in May this

year, urging judge Mr Justice Popplewell, to overturn the SENT's refusal of their appeal, as mistaken in law.

But he dismissed their case and their battle finally ended in defeat when the civil court of appeal in London refused them leave to appeal against Mr Justice Popplewell's decision.

Giving judgment, Lord Justice Kennedy with the agreement of his colleague Lord Justice Chadwick, said it was 'perfectly clear' the SENT had considered Niki's needs and the merits of both schools, and there were no grounds for interfering with the tribunal's decision.

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