Permanent exclusion from school

1. Overview

Permanent exclusion

If your child has been excluded, you can download our detailed guidance. Download the guidance

Permanent exclusion means the pupil is not allowed to return to their school.

A headteacher can only permanently exclude if

  • a child seriously or persistently breaks the school’s behaviour policy
  • allowing them to stay in school would seriously harm their, or other pupils’, education or welfare

How does the exclusion process work?

Only the headteacher (or the most senior teacher in their absence) can exclude a pupil.

If the headteacher decides to exclude your child, the school will phone you as soon as possible. They’ll also write to you within 24 hours to explain

  • why your child has been excluded
  • your right to give your views to the Governing Board about the decision

The school will tell us at ISEND Education Support Behaviour and Attendance Service (ESBAS). We will explain your rights and information about your child’s future education.

Your child's future education

During the first five days of your child’s exclusion, the school must provide work and mark it. We’ll then contact you and arrange alternative education for your child.

Advice and support

The Governing Body meeting

The governors must meet to consider any exclusion that triggers a compulsory review within 15 school days of the imposition of the exclusion, according to Regulation 24 of the Exclusion Regulations.

The following exclusions should trigger a compulsory review:

  • All permanent exclusions;
  • Any suspension that takes the total number of school days that the student has been excluded to more than 15 in any one term;
  • An exclusion that would result in a young person missing a national examination or test.

You will be invited to attend this and can be supported by a friend or advocate. You can send written information for the governing board to consider before the meeting. The school should explain how to do this. You can also request that the meeting is held remotely.

As a parent, you will have the chance to explain why you think your child should not have been suspended or permanently excluded and why they should be reinstated. You may also be asked questions.

Advice and support

Independent Review Panel

Independent Review Panel

If the Governing Body does not overturn the exclusion, you can ask for an Independent Review Panel hearing. Requests for a hearing must be

  • in writing and
  • made within 15 school days from receiving confirmation of the decision

The decision letter from the Governing Body will provide more details about the deadline and where you must send your review request.

At an Independent Review Panel meeting you can

  • present your case against the exclusion yourself, or
  • ask a friend or legal representative to speak for you

Independent review panels have the power to

  • uphold the exclusion decision
  • recommend that the Governing Body reconsiders the decision, or
  • reject the decision and tell the Governing Body to reconsider the exclusion

The decision of the panel is final. The pupil, parents, Governing Body, headteacher, local authority and (for an academy) the Academy Trust must all follow the decision.

Questions on exclusion review process

Contact the East Sussex School Appeal Service on

Telephone: 01273 482290 

Email: School Appeals

Advice and support