Part of Prayers – in the House of Commons at 9:37 am on 19th July 1991.

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Photo of Mr Terry Dicks Mr Terry Dicks , Hayes and Harlington 9:37 am, 19th July 1991

I am sure that my hon. Friend will correct me if I am wrong, but I understand that education legislation relating to special needs does not include the special needs of exceptionally bright children. Will my hon. Friend ensure that the new schools, as well as looking after the special needs of the mentally disabled and children with other disabilities, also look after the needs of exceptionally bright children? If we forget such children, we may as well forget the future leaders of our country.

My understanding is that the law does not provide for schools to take account of those special needs. With the widening choice that the Government are providing, we now have an opportunity to ensure that parents of bright kids can say to a school. "You are legally obliged to provide facilities for my bright child, in the way that you provide them for backward or disabled children."