Is it too much to ask that young people with disabilities and learning difficulties make their own choices about their future – like their peers?

Support the rights of young people with disabilities and learning difficulties by joining them in their campaign against educational inequality.

Young people with disabilities want to develop their skills. They want to be counted – not excluded. They want to contribute to society and be active citizens.

To do that they need access to information, guidance and advice to enable them to make the right choice when it comes to post-14 education, training and employment options.

Young people with disabilities and learning difficulties want to follow their aspirations and dreams. That includes making their own decision as to which option is the best for them – and that may not be the nearest, or cheapest one.

Unless they and their families have access to impartial information, guidance and advice then how can they make informed choices?

Students with disabilities and learning difficulties started their campaign ‘Right not a Fight’ to voice their concerns about being blocked from accessing the colleges

and training options of their choice and not being given information on all education, employment and training options.

Young people and their families are not receiving the right information. They endure a revolving door of assessments, reviews and appeals.

Some families give up and accept options which aren’t right for their son or daughter while others spend months fighting the system.

Both options are highly stressful for the whole family and can waste significant amounts of public money. 

In the long run it is the young person who loses out – who doesn’t fulfil his or her potential. Young people with disabilities ask you to join with them to ask for the same rights as their peers without disabilities.

Every student has the right to be in control of their future and choose their educational path.

Every student has the right to be in control of their future and choose their educational path.

Join our campaign

Young people will demonstrate outside the House of Parliament on June 16.

The Ofsted Report “Moving Forward?” 2016 highlighted these issues stating “The provision of specialist, impartial careers guidance to learners with high needs was generally weak. The young people and their families interviewed by inspectors frequently stated that they had received insufficient information about the full range of opportunities available to them. Of the 20 local authority websites that inspectors reviewed, 16 failed to provide sufficiently detailed information”

The young people have launched a petition asking the Minister of State for Children and Families, Mr Edward Timpson, to ensure everyone who has a statement of special educational needs or an Education, Health and Care plan has a named careers adviser with the expertise and knowledge to provide impartial advice and guidance from year 9.

Our petition

Our aims

Students want the right to make their own choices on the best education, employment and training options. They want to be given clear information about what is available and how they can access it.

The Association of National Specialist Colleges is working on behalf of young people to ensure that they know about all the options available and that they can access the provision that is right for them – and their choice.

Young people with disabilities and their families are saying it is still a “postcode lottery” and things are getting worse.

The Ofsted Report “Moving Forward?” 2016 highlighted these issues stating “The provision of specialist, impartial careers guidance to learners with high needs was generally weak. The young people and their families interviewed by inspectors frequently stated that they had received insufficient information about the full range of opportunities available to them. Of the 20 local authority websites that inspectors reviewed, 16 failed to provide sufficiently detailed information”.

We are campaigning for the Minister of State for Children and Families, Mr Edward Timpson, to ensure that everyone who has a statement of special educational needs or an Education, Health and Care Plan has a named careers adviser with the expertise and knowledge to provide impartial advice and guidance from year 9.

We’re going to:

  • Make sure people are aware of specialist college provision.
  • Make sure there’s a voice for young people about accessing the college and programme of their choice.
  • Make sure specialist colleges are promoted in every local authority’s Local Offer.
  • Make sure future funding and legislation changes meet the needs of young people with complex disabilities.

Campaign coverage

Join the conversation on Twitter:

@rightnotafight

  • RT  @Henshaws : Please support  @rightnotafight  - campaign for careers advice for young people with learning disabilities https://t.co/lJxn1Gq… 4 weeks ago
  •  @Geekmoshua  Pl spread the message about our petition - https://t.co/0Jeil8OI1p You know how important it is to Alex https://t.co/yTPrklC7Uu 1 month ago
  • Read about our campaign  @tesfenews  https://t.co/95I4tXmOUf. Sign our petition at https://t.co/0Jeil8OI1p https://t.co/11BpF5RawM 1 month ago
  • Phil & Jack from  @LinkageCollege  making their voices heard at today's demo. https://t.co/Dyr0EduD3a 1 month ago
  •  @jackthorne  Thanks so much for taking time to join our demo. And signing our petition https://t.co/0Jeil8OI1p https://t.co/kCRLv3dmn0 1 month ago

Want to know more?

Press office:

If you’re press looking for more information or you’d like to get in touch with us, you can contact our press office:

Marianne Sweet

Students and parents:

If you are a student or parent wanting to know more about specialist colleges, get in touch with Natspec:

Discover the Natspec College Directory

There are 70 Specialist colleges across the UK and Northern Island, each with their own unique expertise. Find out who they are and what they can offer.