Ofsted has slammed the council for failing special needs children in Bracknell.

After meetings with children and young people with SEND, parents and carers, and local authority The education watchdog said that a Written Statement of Action (WSOA) is required because of significant areas of weakness in the area's practice.

The scathing report described many parents as ‘feeling exhausted at having to continually fight to be heard and to have the needs of their children assessed and met’.

Michelle Hey, who is a parent of an SEND child and was involved in the parental meeting with Ofsted said: “I don’t think there was one parent there that was happy in the meeting. Bracknell Forest are literally systematically failing our children.

“I’ve been met with ‘a wall of silence’ through the entirety of my childs life that is just disgusting. You get painted as a bad parent until you fight for a diagnosis.

“I’ve paid thousands of pounds to go private which is the only thing that is going to get your child where they need to be and that is disgusting.”

Her teenage boy is currently in year 11 and is applying for colleges however without the assistance of Bracknell Council this is proving ‘impossible’.

Ms Hey explained: “At the moment he has no assistance from the local authorities about where he’s going to go afterwards and doesn’t have an updated EHCP which I’ve been trying to get for the last 2 years.

“I had letters in November saying they are going to update it and I’m still waiting. The legal cut off date for year 11 students is 31 of March which will is obvious that they are not going to make.

It's not been specifically updated now for 4 or 5 years. It’s supposed to give you an outside view of what that child is like without meeting them. If you pick up my son’s it doesn’t reflect him as a child or as a person.”

Cllr Gareth Barnard, Executive Member for Children, Young People and Learning, responded on behalf of the council. He said:

“We are very aware that although we have started to address areas for development, there are still significant challenges ahead. We fully recognise that current standards are not at the high level we expect of ourselves, or at the standard our children, young people and their families deserve.

“Communication with families need to improve to ensure their children and young people are being fully supported. This is an area we are already addressing.

“Some of these changes will take time to establish, but we will work together with our partners and SEND families to ensure we put children, young people and families at the heart of what we do.”

Parents however do not feel that this response is adequate to address the situation as a whole.

Hey commented: This has been going on since 2014 since the reforms. We’re in 2022, it should be done by now. These kids are suffering and they are making the parents job twice as hard as it needs to be because our lives are as complicated as much as it is without having to chase down the local authorities.

“This is an ongoing situation from them. They can post their response, but I would imagine they don’t have the manpower now to sort out the problem so I don’t know where to go from here really.”