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schools 'freedom' to exclude pupils comes with a heavy caveat

25 November 2010

The Government’s white paper has set out plans to pilot a new approach to permanent exclusions. Under the plans, schools will be free to exclude pupils but will then be responsible for finding and funding alternative provision themselves. The Government suggests that schools could collaborate with other schools to provide suitable places or buy them from the local authority, voluntary sector or local colleges.

If the responsibility for finding and funding alterative provision is not enough of a disincentive for schools to exclude pupils, schools will also be held accountable by retaining excluded pupils’ ongoing academic performance in their performance tables.

The government is keen to discourage schools from shifting problem pupils on to someone else’s turf and incentivise schools to ensure pupils get good alternative provision. Head teachers, local authorities and the government will begin working together soon to test the new approach.

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