Evidence is undisputable that consistency of education is vital for success. At North Yorkshire Virtual School, we work very hard to avoid moving Looked After Children whenever possible and we try to work with schools to avoid permanent exclusions.
The stability within a home placement and school placement is vital for secure attachments and yet we know that past issues which have impacted on a child's upbringing, result in Trauma and Attachment difficulties, causing a detrimental effect on their behaviour, social and emotional development.
If you have concerns about the behaviour of a child who is Child in Care, the Personal Educational Plan (PEP) meetings are the best place to discuss any issues. It is not necessary to wait until the next scheduled meeting, any person- carer, school representative or pupil can request that an additional meeting is held.
Exclusion from school should be a last resort for any children, so it is vital that Foster Carers and the whole team around the child, work with the school as soon as a child's behaviour becomes a cause for concern.
If you are worried about a Young Person who is at risk of permanent or a fixed term exclusion, please contact the Virtual School Head straight away. Email Julie.Bunn@northyorks.gov.uk. This is to enable the Virtual School Head, working with others, to:
- Consider what additional assessment and support (such as additional help for the classroom teacher, one-to-one therapeutic work or a suitable alternative placement) needs to be put in place to address the causes of the child's behaviour and prevent the need for exclusion;
- Make any additional arrangements to support the child's on-going education in the event of an exclusion.
The school should tell Foster Carers and the child's Social Worker the reasons for the exclusion. The Social Worker should inform the parents, if appropriate. After talking to the child and their parents the Social Worker must then look at whether to appeal against the decision to exclude the child. The child's Social Worker must also inform the child's Independent Reviewing Officer.
If a child is excluded from school for a fixed period, the school will provide work for the first five days of the exclusion. The child's Social Worker, or your Supervising Social Worker, must talk to you about suitable arrangements for making sure the child does schoolwork during the day and ensuring that the child does not go out during school hours, except as part of a planned arrangement. From the sixth day the school should provide a place for the child to be educated.
If the child is in primary school and receives a fixed term exclusion or is in secondary school and is excluded for more than five days, the Social Worker should make sure a meeting is held within the five days to discuss the child's return and how best this can be supported.
When a child is permanently excluded but remains in the same foster home, the Social Worker should speak to the Local Education Authority to find another school placement. In the case of permanent exclusion, a meeting of the school governors will be held within fifteen days to review the decision. If the meeting decides to uphold the decision to permanently exclude, an appeal can be made within fifteen school days.
Contact the Schools Exclusion team on: 0113 350 7024
Useful resources and further guidance
- NYCC website page for the Exclusion of Pupils
- DFE Statutory guidance on exclusion from maintained schools, academies and pupil referral units in England
- Improving Attendance and Reducing Exclusions