Best Practice

Exclusion in education: Why exclude?

Exclusion can sometimes be a necessary last resort, but increasingly the evidence is pointing to many ‘offenders’ for whom this solution is just not appropriate. Karen Sullivan explains

Since writing my last article looking at the increase in permanent exclusions from secondary schools and examining some of the reasons for this phenomenon (Behaviour and exclusion, SecEd, January 2018), Ofsted has indicated that they will be writing to schools whose fixed-period exclusion rates are double or, in some cases, triple that of the national average.

In her annual report, published in December, Amanda Spielman, Ofsted chief inspector, suggested that schools are using exclusions in order to boost their academic results, and asked for inspectors to look closely for signs that pupils were being taken illegally off the school roll.

She confirmed that exclusions should only be used when pupil behaviour justified it (i.e. threatening teachers, violence or compromising the ability of other students to learn and so on).

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