National | Education

Northern Principals plea for more support with Special Education & Behavioural Concerns

The Northland Principals Association has conducted a survey around Special Education and Behavioural concerns within their schools and they say the survey is a reaction from principals who are fed up with their concerns on the issue not being heard.

Northland principals are noticing a marked increase in severe behaviour amongst children with special needs.

The Northland Principals Association says they're fed up with their schools being blamed for an issue that comes from decades of massive socio-economic deprivation.

Pat Newman says, “It's totally serious and I don't know whether you can use this, but I have an ex-pupil that fitted this category that went to court for murder as a seventeen year old this week.  He was one of these children that we started screaming about from when he was six.  It’s serious!”

104 Northland principals took part in a survey on Special Education Behavioural concerns, with over half of them saying there's not enough resources or assistance provided to deal with the issue.

Also 14% of those who took part say the level of stress and violence to their staff is now at a serious stage.

Robert Clarke says, “The biggest problem is the lack of adequate funding and resources provided by the ministry to Northland schools to deal with behavioural issues at school.”