Sunday, 7 March 2010


Which twelve?

A lady has visited a CE centre in the United Kingdom. She is Leah Fraser, a local PPC (Prospective Parliamentary Candidate). Blogging her visit, she describes the centre that she has seen as –

… one of 12 in Britain

What does she mean? What can she have heard? If twelve do it, what do the others do?

Does she mean that only twelve do it properly? If so, which twelve?

Is this lady breaking a long-standing taboo, a conspiracy of silence? Twenty-odd years into the internationalisation of Conductive Education are people ready now to consider the old adage that all that glisters is not gold.

This is certainly a long overdue topic for consideration – and not just in the UK. Twelve is a handy, arbitrary number to start thinking around? Are there indeed twelve in Britain? More? Less? Twelve in North America? Twelve in Germany?

Criteria, anyone?

References and notes

Frazer, L. (2010) Stick'n'Step, Leah Fraser: working to be the next MP for Wallasey and Morton, 5 March

By the way, a footnote to Ms Fraser's' blog helpfully explains

Cerebral Palsy affects one in 400 children and limits mobility, speech and confidence, but it doesn’t reduce life expectancy or intelligence.

Really? My own simple understandings of these two matters is something as follows.

My own reading of intellectual abilities and cerebral palsies tends to the interpretation that about half of children with cerebral palsies have some degree of learning difficulty but others have normal or above intelligence . I know that there are other readings...

As for longevity, with improved care, the life expectancy of cerebral palsy patients is lengthening. Many of those with a mild cerebral palsy have a normal life expectancy. A two-year-old with mild palsy has a 99% chance of living to the age of 20, compared with someone with a much severer condition, where the figure can be as low as 40%. Poor prognosis is associated with severe quadriplegia, epilepsy, mental retardation and medical complications such as reflux and pulmonary disease.

This lady may is a potential future legislator. She deserves to be better informed.


  1. Andrew,

    I decided not to guess on the criteria, I have asked Leah Fraser what she means on her blog.

    I referred her to your posting so maybe you will get an answer in the next few days.


  2. Andrew

    Leah Fraser replied very promptly to my enquiry.

    She tells me that the management at Liscard informed her that the centre is one of twelve centres "like this" in Britain, the twelfth has just recently opened.

    She has been informed, also by Liscard, that all the other CE centres in the UK are part of larger facilities such as schools.

    So the criteria had nothing to do with doing it properly or not doing it properly as you suggested.

    It appears that it has to do with doing "it" in a place of your own.

    I now wonder about the other eleven with their own places and the many more that are part of larger facilities.

    Does it actually make a difference?

    It certainly does here in Nürnberg. The fact that we are separate unit but a part of a huge "Verein" has helped us survive through many a financial crisis over the past 15 years.

    It also means that we are part of a system, with movement between different departments. It makes CE a part of something larger, a part of life, perhaps just as it should be.

    I wonder what others think.

  3. Susie, has Leah Fraser not been somewhat misinformed as to facts? "12"? "... part of larger facilities"? etc

    As to Andrew's point (as I understand it), there are some places, even in the UK, that claim to be delivering conductive education that I would personally not wish Paces to be bracketed with under a common label. Defining the "it" might yet be important for us all.