Parents seeking support for children with special educational needs face unlawful practices, buck passing and a “treacle of bureaucracy”, MPs say.

The Commons Education Committee said the government had set councils up to fail by upping parents’ expectations while cutting council budgets overall.

Already stretched families were being torn apart, its report said, as they fought for their children’s rights in schools, with councils and in tribunal.

Ministers say they are boosting funds.

The government has also commissioned a “root and branch” review of the system.