Clause 19 - Procedure

Part of Special Educational Needs and Disability Bill [Lords] – in a Public Bill Committee at 11:45 am on 3rd April 2001.

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Photo of Margaret Hodge Margaret Hodge Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education and Employment) (Employment and Equal Opportunities) 11:45 am, 3rd April 2001

I hope that I can respond to the good, detailed and technical questions that hon. Members have asked. The first point raised by the hon. Member for Daventry concerned whether separate hearings could take place. I hope that he agrees that the structure that we are attempting to set up is designed to bring everything together into one hearing. That is why we have chosen the format of the SEN tribunal.

Following the passage of the legislation, we will make regulations that set out the precise circumstances in which a hearing can be a joint hearing on issues of discrimination and SEN. We will hold consultations on the issue, so there should be some clarity on it. Of course, nothing in the legislation would prevent two hearings from being held, if that were appropriate.