Permanent exclusions in primary schools on the rise

Academies more than twice as likely to permanent exclude a child

The DfE’s annual report on exclusion rates in England, released today, shows that permanent exclusions in primary schools in the 2013/14 academic year were up from 670 pupils in 2012/13 to 870.

This sharp rise is a dramatic increase when compared to the relatively steady exclusion numbers over the last half-decade, which ranged from 610-690 pupils per year.

The research also showed that while 15,297 non-academy primary schools have excluded 730 pupils, the 1,536 primary academies have permanently excluded 140 pupils. To put it another way, primary academies are more than twice as likely to permanently exclude a pupil than primary non-academies. However, it is worth noting that this comparison is not like for like as academies are often set up when a struggling school is taken over by a sponsor.

The changes in January this year giving headteachers more powers to exclude children have made it easier for these figures to rise in next year’s findings if not used responsibly. The Guardian reported on one six year old, for example, who was excluded for four days for bringing Mini Cheddars in his lunch that were against his school’s healthy-eating policy.

Read the full statistics from the report here.

Pie Corbett