Future Of Autistic School In Doubt

There are fears that the only school in Hampshire which caters for autistic children could shut - because it's losing too much money.

Up to 60 jobs would go if Hope Lodge in Southampton closes - it would affect 11 to 16-year-olds.

Hampshire Autistic Society says it's consulting on a proposal that was reached with a 'heavy heart'.

The proposal would affect 11 pre-16 students and potentially result in 35-60 job losses. However, regarding the staff the society hopes to be in a position to offer some alternative employment opportunities and will do all it reasonably can to support those individually affected staff members.

The consultation process commenced on 28th February 2012 and runs until 20th April 2012 followed by a period of full and genuine consideration for all ideas put forward. Only then will a final decision be reached and an announcement made in the week commencing 30th April 2012.

Pauline Quan Arrow, Chair of Hampshire Autistic Society states:"The Board of Trustees, which includes parent Trustees, will continue to work from a parent perspective and with sensitivity and genuinely hope that the consultation will produce alternative ideas for consideration."

The Society would like to stress that should this proposal be taken forward, then detailed and sensitive transition plans for each affected student and family would take place.

A copy of the Summary Proposal is available upon request or on www.has.org.uk