Family plea after Sheffield girl, 11, who has PDA autism is 'rejected by 26 schools'

Specialist theatre classes are the only educational input Grace Wild currently receives. Credit: ITV

The family of an 11-year-old girl from Sheffield who has been diagnosed with a rare form of autism, say she has been abandoned by the system after she was rejected by dozens of schools.

Grace Wild has a condition called Pathological Demand Avoidance, which means she can struggle to deal with demands - prompting rushes of anxiety that can lead to violent outbursts.

Her mother Tracey says she has been told Grace, who has been out of school since July, may have to wait another year until she can get a suitable school place.

Now Tracey is calling for better support for children with complex needs amid fears there are hundreds of families across the country in the same situation.

In response to Grace's story, a Department for Education spokesman said it recognises councils are facing cost pressures and is investing £6billion pounds to help young people with specialist education needs this year.

The PDA Society charity, which is fighting for better recognition of the condition, told Calendar that PDA children's symptoms are often misunderstood.

For further information on PDA click here.