Mum to quit job after disabled son's nursery place vanishes

A mother who was told her disabled son will miss out on a place at a specialist nursery just two days before he was due to start has said she will have to quit her job.

Friday, 2nd September 2016, 6:30 pm
Updated Friday, 2nd September 2016, 7:36 pm

“It is looking like I am going to have to go on benefits,” she said. Emma Kane’s three-year-old son Caleb has been diagnosed with a condition known as global development delay and requires specialist care.

The working mother said she had been given a date months ago for son Caleb to begin at Buttercup Nursery, part of Rossmar School in Limavady, who are able to offer specialist care and education for children with learning difficulties and other special educational needs. However, just days before the beginning of the school year, Emma said she was told her son no longer had a place at the school.

“I was given two days notice”, she said. “In around May I was contacted by the nursery to bring Caleb in for a sort of settling in period. We were up once a week to get him settled in. I had signed forms up there and everything was looking great.

“I got the phone call on Tuesday morning from the Principal who said they had got a finalised list of all the pupils and Caleb’s name wasn’t on it. They contacted the education authority who said they weren’t funding what they call minus two years - sort of earlier than pre school places. I don’t hold the school responsible at all because they were in the same position as me.

“He’s lost his place in the créche so I will have to quit my job to look after him.”

When contacted, Rossmar School said it was a matter for the Education Authority.

An Education Authority spokesperson said: “We are aware of an issue raised relating to communication with a parent and are currently investigating this matter further.”