It's fairly rare when a government report uses stronger words than I might in condemning the lack of attention to students with special needs. This must-read report is damning of the system. It's also frustrating beyond words to read it as a parent of a child with SEND and as someone engaged in efforts to support other families.
Adopting a child with a Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder is life changing, no doubt about it. But so is adopting any child. When I was adopted back in the 1960s it changed my parents' lives. They drove me home through some of the biggest snowdrifts of the 20th century, stopping to feed me in the back of the car and realising they had little idea what to do. They managed.
To anyone who has adopted or is close to networks supporting those with adopted children, there is sadly no surprise at these figures. Adoptive families across the UK are feeling relieved that their struggles are being noticed.
As a radical feminist, I believe that women's bodily autonomy is sacrosanct. As an aunt to a beautiful nephew with FASD, I worry. And, I worry because cuts to health, social services, education and legal aid will increase the number of women and children trapped in violent homes.