EXETER House special school in Salisbury has been given £100,000 to increase in size and take on more pupils with special educational needs.

The money will come from the government’s Designated School Grant to meet the increasing numbers of children with Special Educational Needs (SEN).

Headteachers and education experts sitting on the authority’s school Forum committee heard that the authority saves between £25,000 to £65,000 per pupil by educating children with SEN within the county.

The money is saved because the child does not need to be placed out of county in an independent school not overseen by Wiltshire council.

Exeter House opened a Vocational Centre in the former John Ivie Centre on Friary Road in the city in 2016 to teach a class of pupils aged 15-19.

While the school can currently take on 124 pupils, from September, 140 additional places are needed.

An application was made to give the school an extra £100,000 in its budget to help with the costs of running its two sites, that are around two miles apart, as they both increase to take on more pupils.

All schools that have split sites receive an extra payment per pupil and School Forum voted unanimously to give the special school the cash to increase in size.

Outlining the reason for the increase in funding, Grant Davis, schools strategic financial support manager at Wiltshire Council, said: “Demand continues to outstrip supply.

“The school has not been able to expand on its one site, Wiltshire Council is formally asking the school to expand across two sites.

“Placing pupils out of county is considerably more expensive.

“In order to meet growing demand we need to reconfigure accommodation of pupils and support the needs of pupils on both sites.”