HC Deb 26 April 2004 vol 420 c819W
Mrs. Iris Robinson

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what training student teachers receive on the needs of children with autistic spectrum disorders. [167722]

Mr. Gardiner

There is a comprehensive range of core competences to be covered by student teachers during their Initial Teacher Education (ITE) courses when most of a student's time is spent on school placement.

As such, special educational needs provision mainly covers the recognition of pupils' special needs and focuses on strategies to meet those needs. Current ITE provision is, nevertheless, under review with the intention of developing approaches which match, more closely, the needs of teachers entering the profession.

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