Girl with autism excluded from school as they fail to meet her special educational needs

Bangor, Northern Ireland, Kirstie Greer, 16 has not accessed education for 2 years. This is because no school can cater for her special needs.

Kirstie was diagnosed with dyspraxia when aged 3 and with with autism at 13.

The Belfast Telegraph states that Kirstie has been home-schooled for the past 2 years because there are no schools that can offer her the help she needs.

Mum, Nuala Greer 49 said that her daughter has been bullied in the past and that rather than dealing with the bullying they concentrated instead on Kristie’s reactions to it.

She was told by the South Eastern Education and Library Board that there was no suitable placement available.

“It seems there’s no school that can cater for her at her academic level and at the same time understand her condition. The board has labelled her aggressive and violent because of the way she has reacted to bullying or to people touching her, but what she needs is concern, understanding and awareness.”

Kirstie became frustrated that she wasn’t being taken seriously. She told the Belfast Telegraph:

“I kept lashing out because no-one did anything about it,” she said. “Nobody was listening to me and when I sorted it out myself I kept getting into trouble.”

Nuala believes that there is a total lack of understanding surrounding Kristie’s difficulties and that this is due to a lack of training.

Kirstie was bullied at primary school and this continued into secondary school, because her parents became increasingly concerned for her well-being they removed her from the school.

Kirstie was then placed in a second school but Nuala was forced to give up work.

She was having to pick up Kirsie early from school as many as three times a week. It became impossible for her to continue to work.

“I was getting phone calls from the point of view of concerns for her wellbeing. They didn’t have the resources to manage her to that extent.”

You can read the full article by Claire Williamson in the Belfast Telegraph here