A child‘s right to learn: the struggle to find a place in school for children with special needs

Demand for school places for children with special needs is rising, but schools say they can't add classes due to lack of space, staffing and funding issues

Conor Heffernan and his wife Amy, with their 6 month old son Shane and their other son Tony (3). Picture: Alan Place

Amy Heffernan has found out the hard way how difficult it can be to find a school place for a child with special needs.

She is driving a total of 184km every day to bring her three-year-old son Tony to and back from the closest specialised preschool available.

He was diagnosed with autism last year but there were no suitable preschool places available for him near their home in Caherconlish in Limerick.

So since last ...