Ministers act to cut school exclusions
Tuesday 12 May 1998
Just one-quarter of secondary schools are responsible for two-thirds of permanent exclusions and one-quarter do not exclude any pupils. Last year, the exclusion rate in Hammersmith and Fulham, in west London, was four times that of Newham in east London and more than six times that of Oxfordshire.
The report from the Prime Minister's Social Exclusion Unit wants to reduce exclusions by encouraging schools to intervene earlier to cope with unruly pupils. It says:
t inspectors should be sent in to schools which exclude the most pupils.
t league tables should show how many pupils each secondary school excludes permanently.
t schools should introduce "sanctuaries" where disruptive pupils can cool off.
The report says that some pupils are being excluded for wearing nose studs or trousers not bought from an approved supplier. There is anecdotal evidence that schools are excluding difficult children so poor results do not affect their position in examination league tables.
Exclusions have risen four-fold since 1990. Last year about 13,000 pupils were permanently excluded. The report also aims to cut truancy from the Government's estimated figure of one million children each year - out of around 7.5 million pupils.
Stephen Byers, the school standards minister, said: "By reducing the levels of truancy and school exclusions we will effectively cut off one of the main supply routes to welfare dependency, joblessness and criminal behaviour."
For the first time, pupils who are permanently excluded will have the right to full-time education either in a "sin-bin" or pupil referral unit or at another school. Some receive only three or four hours tuition a week.
David Blunkett, the Secretary of State for Education, is hoping to receive money for the changes from the Government's comprehensive spending review due to report in July so that they can start to introduce the new arrangements from next year. Costs in pupil referral units are four times as high as those in ordinary schools.
David Hart, general secretary of the National Association of Head Teachers, said: "Setting artificial targets for the reduction of truancy and exclusions will not, of itself, achieve anything unless heads are given the support they need to deal effectively with those pupils who ruin the education of their fellow pupils."
- 1 Woman falls to her death as she celebrates marriage proposal at the edge of Ibiza cliff
- 2 Venezuela Expo Tattoo 2015: Extreme body art from 'Vampire Woman' to 109mm earlobes
- 4 Dad attempts revenge on teenage daughter, plan backfires spectacularly
- 5 Ball pool for adults opens in London
9 reasons Greece's experiment with the radical left is doomed to failure
Have we reached 'peak food'? Shortages loom as global production rates slow
Greece elections: Syriza and EU on collision course after election win for left-wing party
British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford faces execution by firing squad in Indonesia
Liberal Democrat minister defends comments suggesting immigration causes pub closures
King Abdullah dead: We can't afford not to hold Saudi Arabia's royals to account
Negotiable: Tradewind Recruitment: My client is an excellent, large partially ...
£90 - £140 per day: Tradewind Recruitment: I am currently working in partnersh...
£100 - £150 per day: Tradewind Recruitment: Year 3 Teacher Birmingham Jan 2015...
£45000 - £50000 per annum + Excellent benefits: Ashdown Group: Lead Web Develo...