The Virtual School is committed to reducing school exclusions of children in care
There is a dedicated Inclusion Team to support schools, Carer, Social Workers and other professionals. Clare Davis is the Lead Inclusion Officer for the service and is supported by Hedda Wright. Hedda covers the social care areas of Mid and North Essex and Clare covers South and West.
The number of fixed term exclusions has reduced but we are aware that exclusions result in missed time in school and can increase pressure on the care placement. Headteachers should, as far as possible, avoid excluding any child in care. Where there are concerns about a child in care's behaviour, the Inclusion Team should be contacted at the earliest opportunity. Any changes to provision, including positive referrals or alternative provision should be discussed with the Inclusion Team.
The role of The Virtual School is to
- Track all exclusions and work to reduce further exclusions
- Ensure carers and social workers know where to seek advice about exclusions
- Consider what extra assessment and support is required to address the causes of the child's behaviour
- Make any extra arrangements to support the child's on-going education in the event of an exclusion.
Statutory guidance on the exclusion of pupils from local-authority maintained schools, academies and pupil referral units. (DfE June 2012, updated Sept 2017)