Permanent Exclusions - Frequently Asked Questions

What does permanent exclusion from school mean?

A permanent exclusion from school means that, if upheld by governors, the pupil is removed from the school roll and is unable to return to the school.

What can you be permanently excluded for?

You can be permanently excluded for either a serious breach of the schools behaviour policy or repeated breaches (often known as suspensions). In both cases allowing the pupil to remain in school would seriously harm the education or welfare of the pupil or others in the school.  For more information view our lesson on reasons for a permanent exclusion.

What happens after a permanent exclusion?

From the sixth day the local authority where the child lives is responsible for putting in education. During this time parents can apply for a school place. It is though worth liaising with the local authority and their education provider to look at what is the next best steps for your child.

This could include:

  • assessments
  • interventions to support with an unmet need
  • a fair access panel that names a new school for the child to attend
  • an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHCP) which names a provision or provides additional support

Can a permanent exclusion be withdrawn?

A headteacher can withdraw a permanent exclusion up until the point that governors meet to review the head’s decision.  This meeting is called a Pupil Disciplinary Committee Meeting (PDC). It must take place within 15 school days of the permanent exclusion being issued.

Can you appeal a permanent exclusion?

As part of the exclusion process, set out in the Department for Education Suspension and Exclusion Guidance, every permanent exclusion has to be reviewed by a panel of governors. At this meeting parents have an opportunity to make a statement. If governors agree with the headteachers decision you can request request an independent review. For more information view our lesson on outcomes and next steps.

How many suspensions can a child receive before they are permanently excluded?

In the case of persistent breaches of the school behaviour policy there is no set number of suspensions (fixed period exclusions) before a pupil can be excluded. The headteacher would need to ensure that they had exhausted all possible strategies before excluding a child. A reasonable expectation would be that they had used a range of internal and external strategies.

For a serious breach it is possible for a pupil with no previous suspensions to receive a permanent exclusion. The schools behaviour policy should outline what actions would constitute a serious breach. 

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