Excluded from School Because of SEN

Schools aren’t allowed to exclude students just because they have special educational needs (SEN)

All schools must have a behaviour policy which describes what a student can get excluded for. It’s usually for behaviour that is dangerous or illegal, for example:

  • Serious breaches of the behaviour policy (like bullying or bringing illegal substances to school)
  • When letting that student stay at school would seriously harm them, or another student

Students can’t be excluded for things like not completing homework, being late or not wearing the proper uniform.

A school can’t exclude anyone just because of poor academic scores. They also cannot just send a student home to ‘calm down’ if the student has lost their temper.

What exclusion means

The only way a student can be legally excluded is by the school giving the parents or carers proper notice of permanent or fixed term exclusion.

A permanent exclusion means that the student can’t go back to that school at all. A fixed term exclusion is when the student cannot come back to school for a set number of days.

Illegal exclusions

The only time an exclusion is legal is when it’s made by the proper person and is properly recorded. Unofficial agreements between teachers and parents are illegal, and so are all of the following:

  • If an exclusion is issued by a teacher that isn’t the head teacher, or teacher in charge of the Pupil Referral Unit or principal of the academy
  • If a teacher sends a student home for the afternoon. For example just after lunch or only on certain days
  • If a school asks a parent or carer to only send their child in to school on a part time basis