Resolution reached in case aimed at securing appropriate school place for teen with special needs

The boy, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, has Autism Spectrum Disorder, and a moderate intellectual disorder, court hears

High Court proceedings aimed at securing an appropriate school placement for a teenage boy with special needs have been resolved.

The boy, due to his health and educational needs, had been searching for but had been unable to find a school placement that would address his needs.

As a result of not been able to get a place the boy, through his mother, brought High Court judicial review proceedings against the Minister for Education and Skills, the National Council for Special Education (NCSE), Ireland and the Attorney General aimed at obtaining a school place.

When the case, which was launched last October, was mentioned before Ms Justice Niamh Hyland on Thursday, Michael Lynn SC for the boy said that the matter had been resolved.


Mr Lynn, appearing with Brendan Hennessy BL, and instructed by KM Solicitors said that following discussions between the parties an interim school place had been obtained for the teen.

It was hoped that a more suitable, permanent place at a more geographically convenient location can be identified for him in the future, the court also heard.

The judge welcomed the settlement and praised the parties for their efforts in bringing about a resolution.

Previously the court heard that the boy, who cannot be identified for legal reasons, has Autism Spectrum Disorder, and a moderate intellectual disorder.

He has no sense of danger, has been aggressive with others, and has a history of attempting to abscond from his home.

He has been placed in residential setting by the HSE as his family could not manage his behaviours at home.

While the residential setting had worked very well for him, his mother claimed that it was not meeting his educational needs.

It was claimed that the boy was unable to obtain a school place due to a lack of available places.

His mother feared that he would be permanently prejudiced and would never reach is potential unless he got a school placement.

In the High Court action it was claimed that the respondents had failed in their legal and constitutional obligations to give effect to the boy’s constitutional rights, including his right to an adequate education.

Various orders and declarations were sought in the action including an order compelling the Minister, and the NCSE to provide the teen with an adequate and appropriate school education.

They also sought a declaration that the respondents had failed in their duties, as set out in the Irish Constitution, the 1998 Education Act and the 2004 Education for Persons with Special Educational Needs Act to provide the boy with an adequate primary school education.

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