SEND sector recognised in New Year Honours list

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Professionals and volunteers linked to the field of special educational needs and disability (SEND) are among those that were singled out for recognition in the 2016 New Year Honours list

Among these the highest award was Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE), awarded to Professor Barry Carpenter for services to SEND.

Professor Carpenter, who has an adult daughter with Down Syndrome, holds honorary chairs at the Universities of Worcester, Limerick, Hamburg, and Flinders (in Australia), and is an acknowledged international expert in caring for people with learning disabilities. He had previously been awarded an OBE (Officer of the Order of the British Empire).

He is author of numerous books and articles on SEND, including From vulnerability to resilience for Special World. Professor Carpenter said:

It’s a great honour to receive this recognition. I know as a father how much attitudes towards caring for people with learning disabilities have changed hugely in the 30 years I’ve been working in the area, and overwhelmingly for the better. ‘Everybody in the sector works amazingly hard but there’s still a lot to do, particularly as the demographic trends show there will be more and more people with disabilities who need help in the community.

The British Honours system can be traced back to the Order of the Garter, created by Edward III in 1348. Used to recognise people who have made achievements in public life or committed themselves to serving and helping Britain the system has evolved over centuries. Today attention focuses on approximately 1,350 honours awarded at New Year and in mid-June on the date of the Queen’s official birthday.

In this New Year list OBEs were awarded for services to SEND to David Bartram, assistant headteacher, Lampton School, Hounslow, London; Dr Helen Jones, headteacher, Beacon Hill School and Business and Enterprise College, Tyne and Wear; Bernadette Knill, lately headteacher, Priory Woods Special School, Middlesbrough; and Gillian Robinson, executive headteacher, Castle Hill School, Huddersfield.

Among those awarded MBEs (Member of the Order of the British Empire) were Susan Broughton, lately acting chair of the trustee board of Deaf Education Through Listening and Talking; Hilary Dobbie, lately principal, Moor House School and College, Oxted; Trudi Harris, lately chair of trustees, Cherry Trees Respite Care, East Clandon; and Chris Howard, lately chair of governors, Saxon Wood School, Basingstoke.

MBEs were also awarded to Janet Leach, head of Disabled Children’s Services, London Borough of Enfield; Carol Nice, founder, Stepping Stones Play and Learn Group, Colchester; Diane Price, founder, InDiGo; Lindsey Rousseau,    founder and facilitator, National Sensory Impairment Partnership; Catherine Tindall, lately head of early years, Newfield Special School, Blackburn; and Christopher Williams, psychological support services for young people, Lancashire.

Finally, British Empire Medals (BEM) were awarded to Janet Bucknell, lately school support worker, Lonsdale School, Stevenage; Gail Hall, vice chair, Warrington Parents and Carers; and Keelie Hill, teaching assistant, Sherbourne Fields School, Coventry and Sherbourne Stars Coach.

Special World congratulates them all.

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Special World, from Inclusive Technology, is a free website linking 125,000 special education teachers, speech therapists and occupational therapists in 150 countries. Special World readers and contributors work with children who have additional needs or special educational needs including those with severe, profound and multiple learning difficulties and disabilities.

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