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The Education (Northern Ireland) Order 1996

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IntroductoryN.I.

Meaning of “special educational needs” and “special educational provision” etc.N.I.

3.—(1) For the purposes of the Education Orders, a child has “special educational needs” if he has a learning difficulty which calls for special educational provision to be made for him.

(2) For the purposes of this Part, subject to paragraph (3), a child has a “learning difficulty” if—

(a)he has a significantly greater difficulty in learning than the majority of children of his age,

(b)he has a disability which either prevents or hinders him from making use of educational facilities of a kind generally provided for children of his age in ordinary schools, or

(c)he has not attained the lower limit of compulsory school age and is, or would be if special educational provision were not made for him, likely to fall within sub-paragraph (a) or (b) when he is of compulsory school age.

(3) A child is not to be taken as having a learning difficulty solely because the language (or form of, the language) in which he is, or will be, taught is different from a language (or form of a language) which has at any time been spoken in his home.

(4) In the Education Orders, “special educational provision” means—

(a)in relation to a child who has attained the age of two years, educational provision which is additional to, or otherwise different from, the educational provision made generally for children of his age in ordinary schools, and

(b)in relation to a child under that age, educational provision of any kind.

(5) In the Education Orders, “special school” means a controlled or voluntary school which is specially organised to make special educational provision for pupils with special educational needs and is recognised by the Department as a special school.

(6) In this Part, “ordinary school” means a grant-aided school which is not a special school.

(7) In this Part, “child” includes any person who has not attained the age of nineteen years and is a registered pupil at a school.

(8) For the purposes of paragraph (7) a person who attains the age of nineteen years at any time during a [F1school year] at any school shall be deemed not to have attained that age until the day after the end of that [F1school year] .

(9) In this Part, “the Tribunal” has the meaning assigned to it by Article 22(1).

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