Permanent exclusion can have a serious effect on children who are removed from school and isolated from their peers. It is therefore essential that each case where a child would be permanently excluded is considered in depth and follows the government guidelines correctly.
However, this task has been made more difficult as just weeks after introducing new exclusion guidelines, the government has been forced into backing off their new, tougher stance, thus causing yet more headaches for school leaders and governors who now need to refer back to the 2012 guidance which had been replaced.
The U-turn came after lawyers defending pupils threatened with permanent exclusions argued that under the new guidelines, even more children would be facing exclusion from school. They also threatened legal action against the education secretary, Nicky Morgan, claiming the changes were introduced with no prior warning.
Nick Gibb, the schools reform minister, was forced to withdraw the revised guidance following the complaints. The Department for Education (DfE) has stated that updated guidance would be issued in due course. Handsam will of course keep clients up to date with the new guidance once issued.
The decision to repeal the guidance was welcomed by Just for Kids Law, which represents children in exclusion appeals. The organisation went on to warn that the new guidelines may have already adversely affected some pupils. Continue reading