“Disabled young people cannot wait another day for a statutory transition strategy” Pam Duncan-Glancy has said.
The Scottish Labour MSP is currently moving a bill through the Scottish Parliament which will require the Scottish Government to introduce and implement a National Transitions Strategy to improve outcomes for disabled children and young people as they progress into adulthood. The proposed legislation would also mandate that a Scottish Government minister to be assigned special responsibility for transitions.
As part of her programme of engagements on the bill, Ms Duncan-Glancy this week visited New Struan School in Alloa which is an independent day and residential school run by Scottish Autism. It has been supporting young people with Autism aged 5-18 for over 35 years through personal support packages catering for pupils with different levels of communication, social understanding and sensory needs.
The visit also highlighted the need for more support for schools like Struan and children with Autism in Scotland. Pam Duncan-Glancy believes more must be done to ensure that all school staff receive better local and national Government support so that students, particularly ASN pupils, receive the support they rely on.
Commenting, Scottish Labour MSP Pam Duncan-Glancy said:
“Visiting schools like New Struan Additional Support Needs School in Alloa showed the great work and reaffirmed that young disabled people and the people that support them cannot wait another day for a statutory transition plan.
“For too long, disabled children and young people and their families have been project managers in their own lives, that burden cannot continue to rest solely on their shoulders.
“From Alloa to Inverness, and right across the country the current system is failing disabled young people. My bill would allow disabled young people a fighting chance at achieving their dreams, and ensure that the people supporting them are better equipped to do so.
“Schools like New Struan need resources from local and national government to keep doing what they’re doing. More needs to be done to make sure staff have the tools they need to continue providing the high level of support that their students rely on. Pupils cannot be left to take the brunt of budgets being squeezed.
“Without a national transition plan there is no guarantees for any young disabled people when they age out of school. Young disabled people deserve a fighting chance to pursue and achieve their dreams. That is what my bill aims to achieve.”