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The Special Educational Needs and Disability (Northern Ireland) Order 2005

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This is the original version (as it was originally made).

Accessibility strategies and plans

Accessibility strategies of board

17.—(1) Each board shall prepare, in relation to controlled schools under its management—

(a)an accessibility strategy;

(b)further such strategies at such times as may be prescribed.

(2) An accessibility strategy is a strategy for, over a prescribed period—

(a)increasing the extent to which disabled pupils can participate in the schools' curriculums;

(b)improving the physical environment of the schools for the purpose of increasing the extent to which disabled pupils are able to take advantage of education and associated services provided or offered by the schools; and

(c)improving the delivery to disabled pupils—

(i)within a reasonable time, and

(ii)in ways which are determined after taking account of their disabilities and any preferences expressed by them or their parents,

of information which is provided in writing for pupils who are not disabled.

(3) In preparing its accessibility strategy, a board shall have regard to—

(a)the need to allocate adequate resources for implementing the strategy; and

(b)any guidance issued by the Department as to—

(i)the content of an accessibility strategy;

(ii)the form in which it is to be produced; and

(iii)the persons to be consulted in its preparation.

(4) An accessibility strategy shall be in writing.

(5) Each board shall—

(a)keep its accessibility strategy under review during the period to which it relates and, if necessary, revise it; and

(b)have regard to any guidance issued by the Department as to compliance with the requirements of sub-paragraph (a).

(6) It is the duty of each board to implement its accessibility strategy.

(7) A board shall—

(a)if asked to do so by the Department, give to the Department a copy of its accessibility strategy;

(b)if asked to do so by any other person, make a copy of its accessibility strategy available for inspection at such reasonable times as it may determine.

(8) In this Article “disabled pupil”, in relation to a school, includes a disabled person who may be admitted to the school as a pupil.

Accessibility plans for schools

18.—(1) The Board of Governors of a grant-aided school and the proprietor of an independent school shall prepare—

(a)an accessibility plan for the school;

(b)further such plans at such times as may be prescribed.

(2) An accessibility plan for a school is a plan for, over a prescribed period—

(a)increasing the extent to which disabled pupils can participate in the school’s curriculum;

(b)improving the physical environment of the school for the purpose of increasing the extent to which disabled pupils are able to take advantage of education and associated services provided or offered by the school; and

(c)improving the delivery to disabled pupils—

(i)within a reasonable time, and

(ii)in ways which are determined after taking account of their disabilities and any preferences expressed by them or their parents,

of information which is provided in writing for pupils who are not disabled.

(3) In preparing an accessibility plan, the Board of Governors or proprietor shall have regard to the need to allocate adequate resources for implementing the plan.

(4) An accessibility plan shall be in writing.

(5) During the period to which the plan relates, the Board of Governors or proprietor shall keep the accessibility plan under review and, if necessary, revise it.

(6) It is the duty of the Board of Governors or proprietor to implement the accessibility plan.

(7) An inspection of a school under Article 102 of the 1986 Order may extend to the performance by the Board of Governors or proprietor of functions in relation to the preparation, publication, review, revision and implementation of an accessibility plan for the school.

(8) The annual report for a grant-aided school prepared under Article 125 of the Education Reform (Northern Ireland) Order 1989 (NI 20) shall include information as to—

(a)the arrangements for the admission of disabled persons as pupils at the school,

(b)the steps taken to prevent disabled pupils from being treated less favourably than other pupils,

(c)the facilities provided to assist access to the school by disabled pupils, and

(d)the accessibility plan for the school.

(9) The proprietor of an independent school shall—

(a)if asked to do so by the Department, give a copy of his accessibility plan to the Department;

(b)if asked to do so by any other person, make a copy of his accessibility plan available for inspection at such reasonable times as he may determine.

(10) In this Article “disabled pupil” includes a disabled person who may be admitted to the school as a pupil.

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