Special schools consultation

Update on the consultation

We are pleased to report that we received responses from a wide range of stakeholders in relation to our consultation on special educational provision across the Wigan Borough. The responses received are as follows:

Responses on consultation
 Type of respondent Number of responses made
 A school, academy or free school  9
 Any other member of the public  12
 Carer  12
 Child or young person  1
 Community group  1
 Elected Member  1
 Governor  15
 Headteacher  24
 Local Trade Union  2
 Parent  101
 School staff  112
 Support worker  6
 Total  296

We are currently giving the responses due consideration. Should we wish to pursue proposals on changes to the current provision available, all stakeholders will be consulted and provided with an opportunity to provide feedback on any proposals made.

Any final decision will ultimately be taken by Cabinet who will have full access to any feedback and representations.

This consultation closed on 11th April 2018.


We are very conscious that any review or consultation on current provision can cause parents, children and staff some anxieties. We want to reassure you that this is not about removing or cutting provision. We currently do not have enough places in the borough and need to expand and we want to ensure that we have considered your views on how we do this before we make some proposals.

The Deal for Children and Young People

Wigan’s Vision for children and young people is that, as valuable assets themselves, as they grow and mature they will take increasing responsibility for their own health, wellbeing and achievements.

We would like our children, young people and their families to be confident and resilient individuals who are connected to their community and make an effective contribution as citizens. They feel safe and care about their health, education and employment, and their community.

Through our system wide, whole life-course ‘Deal’ we are building a different relationship with our communities and transforming services to work with families, not ‘doing to’ them and working hard to relentlessly connect children, young people and families into community assets and resilient factors in communities.

We are committed to putting children, young people and families at the centre of the process and ensuring they can have their say about the support they need. We want children, young people and young adults with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) to be able to access support when and where they need it without delay.

Tell us what you think

This is an exciting opportunity for you to give us your views on how we develop our specialist provision for the future. We need to make sure that we have the right school provision in the Borough to support the needs of our children and young people and we want to do this with all members of the borough.

This is a very early informal consultation and will inform the development of some proposals at a later stage.

The current position - our special schools

In Wigan we currently have six special schools that are maintained by the council:

Special schools in Wigan
 School Caters for OFSTED rating
Hope School,
Kelvin Grove,
Marus Bridge,
Age range: 2 to 19 years
ASD - Autistic Spectrum Disorder
MSI - Multi-sensory Impairment
SLD - Severe Learning Difficulty
PMLD - Profound and Multiple Learning Difficulty

Number of children on roll: 202
Outstanding (June 2014)
Rowan Tree Primary School,
Green Hall Close,
Age range: 2 to 11 years
ASD - Autistic Spectrum Disorder
MSI - Multi-sensory Impairment
SLD - Severe Learning Difficulty
PMLD - Profound and Multiple Learning Difficulty

Number of children on roll: 104
Outstanding (September 2017)
Oakfield School and College,
Long Lane,
Hindley Green,

(Aspire Federation)
Age range: 11 to 19 years
MLD - Moderate Learning Difficulty
SLD - Severe Learning Difficulty

Number of children on roll: 182
Outstanding (April 2014)
Landgate School,
Landgate Lane,

(Aspire Federation)
Age range: 4 to 19 years
SLCN - Speech, language and communication
ASD - Autistic Spectrum Disorder

Number of children on roll: 78
Good (November 2016)
Newbridge Learning Community,
Moss Lane,
Platt Bridge,
Age range: 11 to 16 years
SEMH - Social, Emotional and Mental Health

Number of children on roll: 89
Good (November 2017)
Willow Grove Primary School,
Willow Grove,
Age range: 5 to 11 years
SEMH - Social, Emotional and Mental Health

Number of children on roll: 68
Outstanding (January 2016)

Locations of schools

Whilst all our special schools are rated either Good or Outstanding by Ofsted, we are thinking of making changes to the provision because:

  • There has been a slight increase in the number of children who need special school places and as a consequence some children have to attend special schools that are not in Wigan. This means some children have to travel some distance to out of borough schools and in turn spend more time away from their families and the communities in which they live. 
  • Some schools require modernisation to ensure they have suitable space and equipment to ensure our children and young people are provided with up to date facilities.
  • The new housing developments planned across the Wigan borough in the long term will increase the number of children. Therefore we have projected that some additional capacity and/or places are needed to make sure there are enough places available for all children and young people who will need them.


This consultation is now closed.

This consultation is to gather views and ideas and is open from 14th March 2018 to 11th April 2018.

Responses to the consultation will be considered once the closing date has lapsed. We will publish the findings of the consultation and details of any further action the council intends to take should it wish to progress any ideas to a further stage.

Following your initial views, we will then develop clearer proposals and will consult with you again more formally on these.

© Wigan Council