Warwickshire probe over councillor SEND comments

By William Eichler | 07 February 2024

Warwickshire CC has launched an investigation after a video showed councillors making disparaging remarks about children with special educational needs and disability (SEND).

Speaking at a children and young people’s overview and scrutiny meeting last month, councillor Clare Golby suggested that the increasing demand for SEND provision could be the result of families ‘swapping tips on how to get their children diagnosed’.

Confused as to why spending on children with SEND had rapidly increased, councillor Brian Hammersley asked if it was ‘something in the water’.

Councillor Jeff Morgan then argued the council should not automatically accept that ‘Little Willy has ADHD [Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder] when in fact Little Willy is just really badly behaved and needs some form of strict correction'.

Warwickshire’s chief executive Monica Fogarty said the council was taking the concerns of residents ‘extremely seriously’ and had launched an investigation.

Council leader Izzi Seccombe added: ‘I am so sorry for the distress this situation has caused, particularly to SEND children and their families.’

The three councillors involved have apologised.

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