Impartial information for parents & carers around school exclusion


Schools (includes academies, free schools and pupil referral units) may exclude a pupil for breaches of their behaviour policy. An exclusion is for a given number of days known as 'fixed-term' or might be permanent.

Statistics show that a disproportionate number of children with SEN are excluded. Head Teacher's should consider what extra support might be needed to identify and address the needs of a child in order to reduce their risk of exclusion.

The statutory guidance for schools (including academies) is available on the Department for Education web pages:

Read the Department for Education exclusions guidance for schools (Annex C, pages 55-61 is a guide for parents)

Read the Department for Education behaviour and discipline guidance for governing bodies

Also their 'mental health and behaviour in schools' guidance

There is also some really useful information for parents via Child Law Advice:

Read the school exclusion information from Child Law Advice

As a parent what can I do?

You could ask school whether further assessment might be needed to identify your child's needs.

You should be able to find a copy of the school's SEN and behaviour policies on their website. There will also be a SEN information report available to view.

If you have any questions or concerns about an exclusion decision for your child, speak to the Head Teacher as soon as you are told about the exclusion. You can also contact the governing body.

If you believe your child has been discriminated against under the Equality Act 2010 you can make a claim to the First Tier Tribunal for Disability Discrimination  If you take this route you must do so within six months of an incident (exclusion).

Read our factsheet 'Managing multiple exclusions for your child' for our tips

Watch our video presentation explaining how children with SEN should be included in education:


We can tell you what the law says and the responsibilities schools and the local authority have. You should find the answers to some of your questions by clicking the FAQ button or any of the tiles below. You may also find it useful to read our section SEN Support.

Frequently asked questions (exclusions)



 Asking a parent to pick up their child at lunchtimes, early, sending a child home to ‘cool off’, or recommending a parent moves their child to another school or to home educate are unlawful practices.   


Parents should not feel pressured into removing their child from school because of a threat of exclusion. Parents can contact the local authority about this by emailing unofficialexclusions@suffolk.gov.uk 

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