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Permanent Exclusion

What is a Permanent Exclusion?

Where a decision is made to permanently exclude a child, a child is no longer allowed to attend the school and their name will be removed from the school roll.

A Permanent exclusion should only be taken:

  • in response to a serious breach, or persistent breaches of the school’s behaviour policy; and
  • where allowing the pupil to remain in school would seriously harm the education or welfare of the pupil or others in the school.

Any exclusion from school can have serious implications for a pupil and should only be used as a last resort. Before deciding to exclude, the school must have tried all other methods of help to support your child in school.

During the first 5 days you as parents are responsible for your child’s whereabouts, you must make sure that they are not in a public place without reasonable justification during school hours. You could be prosecuted if your child is found in a public place when they’re not supposed to be.

Who decides to issue an exclusion?

Only the Head teacher or acting head has the power to exclude a child but this must be upheld by the Governors to be effective. You should be informed of the exclusion as soon as possible (usually by telephone). You should also be given a letter explaining the reasons for the exclusion, the fact that it is permanent and your right to make representations without delay. It will also inform you of your right to attend a meeting where the school Governors have a duty to consider the exclusion.

Schools should set and mark work for the first 5 days of an exclusion and the Local Authority has a duty to provide suitable full time education from and including the sixth day of any permanent exclusion. If your child has an Education, Health and Care (EHC) Plan, the alternative provision must be able to meet your child’s needs as set out in the EHC plan, and the provision must be identified in consultation with parents.

Unofficial exclusions which ask you to keep your child at home to “cool off” without excluding them are not lawful, even if you agree to it. Children should also not be asked to stay at home due to the school not being able to provide for their special educational needs. If your school raises concerns about meeting your child’s needs, you may wish to talk to the Special Educational Needs Coordinator (SENCO). It may also be useful to see our factsheet on SEN Support and EHC Assessments.

Meeting with school

If you do not agree with the reasons behind exclusion, you as a parent must be invited to attend a meeting with the Governors of the school and put forward your views. This meeting must take place within 15 school days of them being informed about the exclusion.

The Governors Meeting

This meeting consists of:

  • Panel of at least three Governors
  • Yourself and your child (you can be accompanied by a friend, Independent Parental Supporter or legal representative, if you wish)
  • The Head Teacher
  • A representative of the Local Authority
  • Any witnesses to the incident
  • A person to take the minutes

Procedure at the Meeting

At the start of the meeting, the Chair (a Governor) will introduce everyone present.

The Head Teacher will explain the reason he/she decided to exclude your child. You will have the opportunity to ask questions.

You will have an opportunity to speak on behalf of your child, they may wish to speak themselves or provide their views in writing. The Head Teacher may ask you questions. Please contact the service if your child would like impartial information, advice and support to put their views across as the Young Person’s Information Officer could support them with this, if you feel the exclusion relates to their special educational needs or disability. Our service may also offer support for you as a parent/carer.

The Governors can ask questions of both parties.

The Local Authority representative will give their view of the exclusion.

After both the Head Teacher and parents/carers have been given the opportunity to summarise, everyone except the Governors will be asked to leave the room to allow them to reach a decision.

The Governors can confirm the Head Teacher’s decision to exclude your child or allow him/her to return to school. You will be informed of their decision in writing without delay school day.

If your child has a disability this should be taken into account when making the decision to exclude as schools are under a duty to make reasonable adjustments to ensure that children who have a disability are not placed at a disadvantage to other pupils who don’t under the Equality Act 2010. Disability discrimination claims have to be made within 6 months of the exclusion.

What happens if the permanent exclusion is upheld?

If the permanent exclusion is upheld by the Governors then you have the right to appeal to an Independent Review Panel (IRP). You have the right to appeal within 15 school days of notice being given to you the parent by the Governors of their decision or within 15 school days of the final determination of a claim of discrimination under the Equality Act 2010.

The IRP’s role is to review the decision of the Governors, although they are unable to reinstate your child at school. They can recommend or direct the Governors to reconsider the exclusion. You can request a SEN Expert at an IRP who can provide impartial advice to the panel about how SEN could be relevant to the exclusion.

Find out more

Further Information and guidance can be obtained from the Department for Education.

See the statutory guidance on exclusions

© 2020 Rotherham SENDIASS

Unless otherwise stated.