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School Place Planning

Special Educational Needs and Disability Provision in Solihull

Latest News:  On 11 March 2019, the Secretary of State for Education approved the bid by Solihull Council to establish a special free school.  The next stage in the process is to advertise the opportunity for potential trusts to apply to establish the new school.  The deadline for applications was 30 September 2019. It is expected that the Secretary of State for Education will make an announcement on successful Trusts early in 2020.

The school at the heart of this project will cater for pupils with a diagnosis of Autism and associated high level Social Emotional and Mental Health Needs.  Pupils may have co-occurring needs but these will be secondary to the autism in their impact on pupils’ development and learning needs.

We will publish more information about this exciting development as the project moves forward.

What school places are available in Solihull?

Children and young people with Special Educational Needs are educated in a range of provision in Solihull.

How are we planning for the future?

The 2019/20 Special Educational Needs & Disability (SEND) School Place Commissioning Strategy was approved on 25 September 2019 and seeks to set a baseline for specialist provision across Solihull and consider a range of factors that are driving the need for change.  The strategy provides information regarding the current and future SEND pupil population and draws conclusions regarding the need to add or make changes to specialist provision.  The aim of the Strategy is to help the Council, schools, parents and the wider community understand the need for specialist provision planning and to establish future demand.  It will provide a basis against which future specialist provision will be planned.

The data within the Strategy suggests that the priorities for development are:-

  • To implement the proposal to create a 100 place Special Free School with a focus around Autism.
  • Develop further Austism additionally resourced provision in the secondary phase.
  • Consider the development of Post-16 Autism and SEMH provision.
  • Consider the further expansion of SLD places at Reynalds Cross and Merstone Schools
  • Develop SEMH additional resource provision in the primary phase (North Solihull)
  • Review places in both MLD special schools once the long term accommodation is agreed with the College following on from the two year pilot schemes
  • Explore and develop spend to save initiatives through the creation of additionally resourced provision to target out of borough placements.

How are new school places funded?

The Government has provided a grant to Council’s to support the physical expansion of specialist accommodation and buildings.  For Solihull the grant equates to over £1 million over a 3 year period.  The table attached shows how Solihull’s grant is being invested to benefit children and young people.

The Council’s High Needs Block Funding provides the funding for the school place, including the teacher and resources a pupils needs.

How to get involved?

The School Place Planning Team is really keen to hear your views about our plans for creating specialist provision in Solihull.  Where new provision is planned we will carry out consultation with parents/carers, schools and all other interested parties.  However if you want to comment on any of the information published on this page please email