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Better support for children with complex needs

13 November 2019

National is looking at substantial reform to support children with complex needs so that all children have the opportunity to succeed in life, National’s Education spokesperson Nikki Kaye says.

“National’s vision is to see children funded for their learning and health needs. We know it takes a huge toll on families when they have inadequate support for a child that has additional learning, behavioural and mental health needs.

“We have previously said supporting children with complex needs is not just about additional funding, it is about reforming the system itself to ensure greater collaboration between our health and education system. Today we are proposing a number of policies to address this, including:

• Funding for additional learning support for schools based on need
• Establishing more multidisciplinary teams in secondary schools and early learning centres, equipped with professionals such as GPs, nurses and guidance counsellors
• Incentivising child and youth specialists through scholarships
• An improved legislative framework

“National is also proposing to track the needs of children in a single record. We are focused on a social investment approach that will cater to the needs of every child.

“We believe there needs to be bolder reform so parents and schools have greater certainty about the support available to them.

“National is aspirational for New Zealanders. We want to ensure every child has the support they need to thrive and become healthy, skilled and motivated learners.”

The discussion document can be found here.


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