Section 50: Persons detained in youth accommodation: further provision
130.This section inserts a new Chapter 5A into Part 10 of the Education Act 1996 after section 562 of that Act.
131.New section 562A of the Education Act 1996 (inserted by section 50 of this Act) provides a power to prescribe modifications to provisions of the Education Acts in their application to children and young people who are detained. Subsection (2)(a) ensures that this power cannot be used to modify the specific provisions made by this Act regarding the provision of education and training for detained persons. The power will be exercisable by the Secretary of State for England and the Welsh Ministers for Wales.
132.New section 562B of that Act imposes responsibilities on home LEAs in England and Wales to monitor the education or training of a child or young person subject to a detention order. The home LEA will have to take such steps as they consider appropriate to promote the person’s fulfilment of his or her learning potential while they are in custody and on their release.
133.The home LEA is the local education authority where the young person is ordinarily resident (excluding any period when the person is subject to a detention order) or, in relation to a child who is or was looked after by an authority under the Children Act 1989, the local education authority that is or was most recently looking after the person.
134.However, section 562B does not apply to children who, while they are detained, are looked after by a local authority (which could happen where they are detained in local authority accommodation); in those cases, local authorities have duties under section 22(3) of the Children Act 1989 which are similar to those under section 562B.
135.Following the amendments made to section 13A of the Education Act 1996 by Schedule 2 to the Act, host LEAs will be required under that section to exercise their functions under section 18A of that Act (inserted by section 48) with a view to promoting the fulfilment by every child concerned of his or her learning potential.
136.The host LEA will be the local education authority for the area where the child or young person is detained.
137.Sections 562C, 562D and 562G confer functions on both the host and home LEAs in respect of those children and young persons where an LEA was maintaining a statement of special education needs immediately prior to their detention.
138.Under 562C the host LEA must use its best endeavours to ensure that appropriate special educational provision is made for the person. This must be either the special educational provision specified in the person’s statement, provision corresponding as closely as practicable to that specified in the statement, or if it considers the provision specified is no longer appropriate, such provision as reasonably appears to the authority to be appropriate. The LEA which was maintaining the statement for the person prior to their detention must retain the statement while the person is detained.
139.Following the amendment made to section 207 of the Education Act 2002 by Schedule 2 to this Act, regulations can be made to enable host LEAs to recoup the cost of making appropriate special educational provision for a person under new section 562C from the authority in whose area the person belongs.
140.Section 562D allows an authority to supply goods and services to the host LEA or the actual person providing the special educational provision.
141.Section 562E of the Education Act 1996 makes provision for literacy and numeracy assessments to be conducted. Under section 562E(2) the host authority must arrange for the detained person’s literacy and numeracy skills to be assessed as soon as reasonably practicable after the person arrives in that particular place of relevant youth accommodation, unless the authority are satisfied that they already have evidence of the current level of the person’s literacy and numeracy skills.
142.New section 562F of the Education Act 1996 makes provision for the transfer of information relating to a detained person’s education or training from their school or previous place of learning to the home and host LEA and to providers of education in custody. Such information might include the educational achievements of the person, their current programme of study and information relating to any special educational needs the person may have. Section 562F(1) allows any person who has provided education or training for a detained person (including while they are in custody) to provide information relating to the detained person to the home and host LEA for the purposes of or in connection with the provision of education or training for the person. This enables the person’s school, or other place of learning and any provider of education in custody to share information with the home and host LEA for the purposes of securing the provision of education both during their period of detention and on their release.
143.New section 562F(2) requires LEAs to comply with any requests for such information made by a youth offending team established under section 39 of the Crime and Disorder Act 1998 (YOT), another LEA, the custodial operator of the place the person is or is expected to be detained and any provider (or proposed provider) of education to the detained person. This enables educational information to be transferred by the home or host LEA to those who will be providing education or involved in the person’s education in custody and on their release.
144.Section 562F(5) requires the Welsh Ministers to provide a copy of any relevant report of an assessment of learning difficulties conducted under section 140 of the Learning and Skills Act 2000 on request to the home or host authority.
145.Section 562F(8) requires the host authority to provide the home authority with any information it holds which relates to the detained person and may be relevant to the provision of education or training for the person on their release. The information must be provided at such time as the host authority thinks reasonable for the purpose of enabling education and training to be provided to the person on their release.
146.New section 562G of the Education Act 1996 applies where a person detained in juvenile custody had a statement of special educational needs maintained for them prior to their detention. It makes provision for the home LEA to notify the host LEA about the statement (and which authority was maintaining it) when the person is detained (unless the host LEA is already aware) and, on the person’s release, for the host LEA to provide similar information to the home LEA (unless the home LEA is already aware) and to notify the authority that was maintaining the statement about the release. Subsection (5) requires any LEA which was maintaining a statement of special educational needs for a person immediately prior to their detention to provide this to the host LEA upon request.
147.New section 562H of the Education Act 1996 ensures that upon a child or young person’s release the host LEA informs the home LEA (or, in the case of a young person over compulsory school age in Wales, the Welsh Ministers) if they believe the person has special educational needs or a learning difficulty which should be assessed.
148.New section 562I of the Education Act 1996 requires LEAs when they are exercising any of their functions under new Chapter 5A to have regard to any guidance issued by the Secretary of State for England and the Welsh Ministers for Wales.