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Session 2008 - 09
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Other Bills before Parliament

Equality Bill

Section 83

Schedule 10 Accessibility for disabled pupils

Accessibility strategies

1 (1) A local authority in England and Wales must, in relation to schools for
5which it is the responsible body, prepare—

(a) an accessibility strategy;

(b) further such strategies at such times as may be prescribed.

(2) An accessibility strategy is a strategy for, over a prescribed period—

(a) increasing the extent to which disabled pupils can participate in the
10schools’ curriculums;

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(b) improving the physical environment of the schools for the purpose
of increasing the extent to which disabled pupils are able to take
advantage of education and benefits, facilities or services provided
or offered by the schools;

(c) 5improving the delivery to disabled pupils of information which is
readily accessible to pupils who are not disabled.

(3) The delivery in sub-paragraph (2)(c) must be—

(a) within a reasonable time;

(b) in ways which are determined after taking account of the pupils’
10disabilities and any preferences expressed by them or their parents.

(4) An accessibility strategy must be in writing.

(5) A local authority must keep its accessibility strategy under review during
the period to which it relates and, if necessary, revise it.

(6) A local authority must implement its accessibility strategy.

2 (1) 15In preparing its accessibility strategy, a local authority must have regard
to—

(a) the need to allocate adequate resources for implementing the
strategy;

(b) guidance as to the matters mentioned in sub-paragraph (3).

(2) 20The authority must also have regard to guidance as to compliance with
paragraph 1(5).

(3) The matters are—

(a) the content of an accessibility strategy;

(b) the form in which it is to be produced;

(c) 25persons to be consulted in its preparation.

(4) Guidance may be issued—

(a) for England, by a Minister of the Crown;

(b) for Wales, by the Welsh Ministers.

(5) A local authority must, if asked, make a copy of its accessibility strategy
30available for inspection at such reasonable times as it decides.

(6) A local authority in England must, if asked by a Minister of the Crown, give
the Minister a copy of its accessibility strategy.

(7) A local authority in Wales must, if asked by the Welsh Ministers, give them
a copy of its accessibility strategy.

35Accessibility plans

3 (1) The responsible body of a school in England and Wales must prepare—

(a) an accessibility plan;

(b) further such plans at such times as may be prescribed.

(2) An accessibility plan is a plan for, over a prescribed period—

(a) 40increasing the extent to which disabled pupils can participate in the
school’s curriculum;

(b) improving the physical environment of the school for the purpose of
increasing the extent to which disabled pupils are able to take

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advantage of education and benefits, facilities or services provided
or offered by the school;

(c) improving the delivery to disabled pupils of information which is
readily accessible to pupils who are not disabled.

(3) 5The delivery in sub-paragraph (2)(c) must be—

(a) within a reasonable time;

(b) in ways which are determined after taking account of the pupils’
disabilities and any preferences expressed by them or their parents.

(4) An accessibility plan must be in writing.

(5) 10The responsible body must keep its accessibility plan under review during
the period to which it relates and, if necessary, revise it.

(6) The responsible body must implement its accessibility plan.

(7) A relevant inspection may extend to the performance by the responsible
body of its functions in relation to the preparation, publication, review,
15revision and implementation of its accessibility plan.

(8) A relevant inspection is an inspection under—

(a) Part 1 of the Education Act 2005, or

(b) Chapter 1 of Part 4 of the Education and Skills Act 2008 (regulation
and inspection of independent education provision in England).

4 (1) 20In preparing an accessibility plan, the responsible body must have regard to
the need to allocate adequate resources for implementing the plan.

(2) The proprietor of an independent educational institution (other than an
Academy) must, if asked, make a copy of the school’s accessibility plan
available for inspection at such reasonable times as the proprietor decides.

(3) 25The proprietor of an independent educational institution in England (other
than an Academy) must, if asked by a Minister of the Crown, give the
Minister a copy of the school’s accessibility plan.

(4) The proprietor of an independent school in Wales (other than an Academy)
must, if asked by the Welsh Ministers, give them a copy of the school’s
30accessibility plan.

Power of direction

5 (1) This sub-paragraph applies if the appropriate authority is satisfied (whether
or not on a complaint) that a responsible body—

(a) has acted or is proposing to act unreasonably in the discharge of a
35duty under this Schedule, or

(b) has failed to discharge such a duty.

(2) This sub-paragraph applies if the appropriate authority is satisfied (whether
or not on a complaint) that a responsible body of a school specified in sub-
paragraph (3)—

(a) 40has acted or is proposing to act unreasonably in the discharge of a
duty the body has in relation to the provision to the authority of
copies of the body’s accessibility plan or the inspection of that plan,
or

(b) has failed to discharge the duty.

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(3) The schools are—

(a) schools approved under section 342 of the Education Act 1996 (non-
maintained special schools);

(b) Academies.

(4) 5This sub-paragraph applies if a Tribunal has made an order under
paragraph 5 of Schedule 17 and the appropriate authority is satisfied
(whether or not on a complaint) that the responsible body concerned—

(a) has acted or is proposing to act unreasonably in complying with the
order, or

(b) 10has failed to comply with the order.

(5) If sub-paragraph (1), (2) or (4) applies, the appropriate authority may give a
responsible body such directions as the authority thinks expedient as to—

(a) the discharge by the body of the duty, or

(b) compliance by the body with the order.

(6) 15A direction may be given in relation to sub-paragraph (1) or (2) even if the
performance of the duty is contingent on the opinion of the responsible
body.

(7) A direction—

(a) may be varied or revoked by the appropriate authority;

(b) 20may be enforced, on the application of the appropriate authority, by
a mandatory order obtained in accordance with section 31 of the
Senior Courts Act 1981.

(8) The appropriate authority is—

(a) in relation to the responsible body of a school in England, the
25Secretary of State;

(b) in relation to the responsible body of a school in Wales, the Welsh
Ministers.

Supplementary

6 (1) This paragraph applies for the purposes of this Schedule.

(2) 30Regulations may prescribe services which are, or are not, to be regarded as
being—

(a) education;

(b) a benefit, facility or service.

(3) The power to make regulations is exercisable by—

(a) 35in relation to England, a Minister of the Crown;

(b) in relation to Wales, the Welsh Ministers.

(4) “Disabled pupil” includes a disabled person who may be admitted to the
school as a pupil.

(5) “Responsible body” means—

(a) 40in relation to a maintained school or a maintained nursery school, the
local authority or governing body;

(b) in relation to a pupil referral unit, the local authority;

(c) in relation to an independent educational institution, the proprietor;

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(d) in relation to a special school not maintained by a local authority, the
proprietor.

(6) “Governing body”, in relation to a maintained school, means the body
corporate (constituted in accordance with regulations under section 19 of the
5Education Act 2002) which the school has as a result of that section.

(7) “Maintained school” has the meaning given in section 20 of the School
Standards and Framework Act 1998; and “maintained nursery school” has
the meaning given in section 22 of that Act.