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 Migrant crisis: Greek soldier saved 20 people singlehandedly off Rhodes beach
- 2 Sofyen Belamouadden murder: The inside story of a crime that horrified Britain
- 3 Company breaks open Apple Watch to discover what it says is 'planned obsolescence'
- 5 UK weather: Britain braced for snow as arctic air mass moves in
Migrant crisis: Greek soldier saved 20 people singlehandedly off Rhodes beach
Ian Brady: Moors murderer announces his support for Ukip and the SNP
Aaron and Melissa Klein: Oregon anti-gay bakers ordered to pay $135,000 after refusing to make cake for same-sex wedding
UK weather: Britain braced for snow as arctic air mass moves in
Bali Nine executions in Indonesia: Death row British grandmother Lindsay Sandiford says she 'just wants to get it over with'
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
The sickening truth about food banks that the Tories don't want you to know
Migrant boat disaster: Ukip candidate mocks victims in sickening Twitter post
Nigel Farage wants the BBC to stop making programmes like Doctor Who, Strictly Come Dancing, and Top Gear
Global warming: Scientists say temperatures could rise by 6C by 2100 and call for action ahead of UN meeting in Paris
General Election 2015: Britain would become a 'communist dictatorship' under Ed Miliband and Nicola Sturgeon, claims wife of Michael Gove
£14560 - £17680 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Even though their premises have...
£44000 - £48000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Marketing company based in cent...
£22000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An IT Installation / Commission...
£16000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: You will maximise the effective...