Sidcup dad is still struggling to find school for disabled daughter

Sidcup dad is still struggling to find school place for his disabled daughter

Paul Jenkins with wife Karen and Lily-Rose, two, and Billy, seven

Paul with daughter Lily-Rose

First published in News
Last updated
News Shopper: Photograph of the Author by , reporter

A Sidcup dad's nightmare is continuing as he struggles to find a school place for his disabled daughter.

News Shopper revealed in February how Paul Jenkins, 32, of Ashcroft Crescent, was shocked to discover there was no space at special schools in two different boroughs for two-year-old Lily-Rose to start in September.

The doctors do not currently know what the toddler is suffering from but she is unable to communicate, sit, crawl, walk or feed herself and Mr Jenkins is concerned about her falling behind even further.

He and wife, Karen, were told in February it was unlikely there would be space in the Bexley special school they viewed and  were told there was no space for her in the Greenwich facility either.

Two months on and the family are still struggling to find a suitable school for the tot in either borough.

Mr Jenkins told News Shopper: "We were advised that Shenstone would be named as her school.

"It will be taking over part of Royal Park School, though there is no guarantee it will be ready by September.

"We have therefore decided to appeal the decision to try to get Lily into Willow Dene School in Greenwich and I am putting the paperwork through at the moment."

News Shopper: Paul with daughter Lily-Rose

A Bexley Council spokeswoman said: "Lily-Rose’s Education, Health and Care Plan recommends that she receives additional support in her current nursery placement and that offer of support has been made to her parents.

"We are continuing discussions with specialist schools that we think might be able to meet Lily-Roses’ needs when she is due to start school later this year. 

"We are in regular contact with the family. Should they wish to discuss their concerns further they should speak to their case officer - who would be happy to help them - as we all want the best outcome for Lily-Rose."

A Greenwich Council spokesman said: “We have no vacancies at Willow Dene School and the responsibility lies with Bexley Council to find Lily-Rose a space.”

Comments (2)

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11:57pm Tue 15 Apr 14

lollie,erith says...

'not having a space' can be challenged through taking it to Tribunal. if a parent chooses the school as suitable and that child has a statement, then the school will have to show its going to have major difficulty accepting that child and the school should put their reasons in writing. a friend of mine had similar issues and the school finally offered her son a place. you can also apply to schools out of the borough if you feel a local one does not meet your child's needs.
'not having a space' can be challenged through taking it to Tribunal. if a parent chooses the school as suitable and that child has a statement, then the school will have to show its going to have major difficulty accepting that child and the school should put their reasons in writing. a friend of mine had similar issues and the school finally offered her son a place. you can also apply to schools out of the borough if you feel a local one does not meet your child's needs. lollie,erith
  • Score: 2

12:13pm Sat 19 Apr 14

mumcabs says...

She is only two years old. What is the great urgency?
She is only two years old. What is the great urgency? mumcabs
  • Score: 1

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