Schools in Hertfordshire have increased their capacity to support pupils with special educational needs and disabilities.

From last month, places have been created in six Special Resource Provisions (SRPs) to support children with speech, language, communication needs and autism, who don't need a special school, but do need additional support so they can access learning in a mainstream school.

The new SRPs are at four mainstream primary schools - Margaret Wix in St Albans, Sauncey Wood in Harpenden, Warren Dell in South Oxhey and Downfield in Cheshunt. 

Each of these are providing support for 12 pupils who have an Educational Health and Care Plan (EHCP) with an identified support need.

New SRPs have also opened at two mainstream secondary schools - Bushey Meads in Bushey and Avanti Grange in Bishops Stortford - with 20 places offered at each.

This is in addition to the SRP at The Priory School in Hitchin, which opened with 20 places in September last year.


Hertfordshire County Council says its multi-million-pound investment in the development of new SRPs "is helping to address a current gap in the county’s SEND service and meet increased need in Hertfordshire for SEND support".

It comes as campaigners prepare to protest in St Albans city centre for SEND reforms.

Action by the national SEND Reform England campaign group is due to take place outside St Albans Museum & Gallery in St Peter's Street from 11am until 2pm on Friday (October 13).

SEND Reform England hopes to encourage more specialist schools and school places, more funding for SEND pupils in mainstream schools, easier and quicker access to diagnostic services and support, and a dedicated minister for SEND.

The group began in May this year as a group of 10 mothers from across the country.

Following a protest in London, a petition with 60,000 signatures was delivered to Downing Street.


Campaigner Michelle Cox said: "Support and funding for children with special educational needs and disabilities has been squeezed more and more over recent years.

"We hear from parents, carers and educators daily who tell us how lack of support is having devastating effects on children and their families.

"SEND Reform England are demanding a complete reform of the SEND Education system and are working with central government and local authorities across the country to ensure these stories are heard.

"We will not stop fighting until every child in England has equal opportunities and disabled children have a chance to thrive, not just survive."


Hertfordshire County Council says the support in SRPs is tailored to each individual pupil, with the number of places kept small, with higher ratios of staff.

"Support will look different for every pupil, and the aim for each pupil is to help them develop their social and communication skills and confidence, to allow them to increase the time they are able to access mainstream classes," a spokesperson for the local authority explained.

Councillor Caroline Clapper, the county council's executive member for education, said: "We want all children in Hertfordshire, including those with SEND, to have their needs met with a range of inclusive provision available through our mainstream schools, specialist resource provision, alternative and special school provision.

"We’re committed to providing the right education in the right place at the right time, and we know there is a need to create more provision in Hertfordshire so that our children and young people with SEND can attend the most appropriate education setting, and achieve the best possible outcomes, as close to their home and community as possible."

For more information about SEND Reform England, you can visit