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A young girl receives help with her schooling

A crucial review of special education is about to hit the Cabinet table.

At present the vast majority of students, with special needs - approximately 76 000 - are educated in a regular school setting.

However 2,500 students still attend one of the country's 34 special schools.

Are these an out-of-date provision? Should they be closed or does mainstreaming negatively impact on the learning of other pupils?

Penny MacKay looks at the options on the table.