For every 5% of possible school sessions missed as a result of an unauthorised absence and for every additional day missed as a result of fixed-term exclusions, there's a price to be paid in reduced GCSE grades.

As well as having higher rates of exclusion, there are certain groups of pupils with additional needs who are particularly vulnerable to the impacts of exclusion. This includes children in care.

Children in care are subject to the same legislation as all other pupils; however there are certain considerations that schools should make before issuing a fixed-term or a permanent exclusion.

Statutory guidance to head teachers on the exclusion of pupils with statements of SEN and children in care:

  • Head teachers should avoid excluding permanently any child in care.
  • Schools should engage proactively with carers in supporting the behaviour of pupils with additional needs.
  • Where a school has concerns about the behaviour, or risk of exclusion, of a child in care, it should, in partnership with others, consider what additional support or alternative placement may be required.
  • In the case of children in care, schools and local authorities should work together to arrange alternative provision from the first day following the exclusion.
  • If a child has more than five consecutive school days of exclusion, then education must be arranged for the sixth school day of exclusion, regardless of whether this is as a result of one fixed-period or more than one fixed-period exclusion.
  • When a child in care is excluded, the school and the local authority should work together to arrange alternative provision from the first day following the exclusion, but where it is not possible, or not appropriate, to arrange alternative provision during the first five school days of an exclusion, the school should take reasonable steps to set and mark work for the pupil. Work that is provided should be accessible and achievable by the pupil outside school

The Virtual School works closely with schools to reduce the number of fixed-term exclusions and ensure that children in care to Leicestershire are not permanently excluded.