The Virtual School is committed to reduce school exclusions of children in care. Whilst the number
of children in care receiving fixed term exclusions has decreased in
recent years, we are all too aware, exclusions not only result in missed time
in school but can also increase pressure on the care placement.
Headteachers should, as far as possible, avoid excluding any child in care. The Virtual School should ensure that carers and social workers know where to seek advice about their role and responsibilities. Where a school has concerns about a child in care's behaviour, the Virtual School should be informed and, where necessary, involved at the earliest opportunity. This is to enable the Virtual School, working with others, to:
- consider what additional assessment and support (such as additional help for the classroom teacher, one-to-one therapeutic work or a suitable alternative placement) needs to be put in place to address the causes of the child’s behaviour and prevent the need for exclusion
- make any additional arrangements to support the child’s on-going education in the event of an exclusion.
The Inclusion team within the Virtual School monitors all exclusions and will work with both the school and other professionals to try
and prevent further exclusions.
The Inclusion team also work closely with the Alternative
Education Commissioning Service to seek solutions to exclusion. Any changes to
provision, including positive referrals or alternative provision should be
discussed with the Inclusion team.
Clare Davis is the Inclusion Commissioner for the service and is supported by Hedda Wright and Gemma Keating. Hedda covers the social care areas of Mid and North Essex and Gemma covers South and West.
Statutory guidance on the exclusion of pupils from local-authority maintained schools, academies and pupil referral units. (DfE June 2012, updated Sept 2017)