Suspension and permanent exclusion from school

School behaviour policies, education during a suspension, education during an exclusion and how to ask for an independent review.

School should be a calm, safe and supportive place for your child to be. It should be free from disruption and fear of bullying. 

School behaviour policy

Every school has a behaviour policy setting out how all pupils should behave. You can ask your child’s school for a copy of their policy, or you may find it on the school's website. 

If there's anything about the policy you want to discuss, contact the school directly. 

A headteacher can issue a suspension or permanent exclusion if your child breaks the rules set out in the behaviour policy, in or outside of school. 

Suspensions and exclusions

A suspension means your child cannot go to school for a set number of days and must return on a set date.

A permanent exclusion means your child can no longer attend that school unless one of the following is true:

  • the school governing board says they can return 
  • the headteacher cancels the permanent exclusion

GOV.UK has a full guide for parents on school behaviour and exclusion

The guide is designed to help parents and carers understand: 

  • why your child’s school has a behaviour policy 
  • how to support your child 
  • the school suspension and permanent exclusion process 
  • how to challenge a suspension or permanent exclusion 

Education during a suspension  

The school is responsible for providing a suitable full-time education for students suspended for more than 5 school days in a school year. 

The school does not have to provide education for suspended students in year 12 and 13 who attend school sixth form.

Education for permanently excluded students 

If your child is permanently excluded from school, we (Haringey Council) are responsible for providing a full-time education from day 6 of the exclusion or sooner. We have places at the Haringey Learning Partnership in Wood Green where students can study. You are expected to make sure your child attends.

We do not have to provide education for permanently excluded students in year 12 and 13 who attend school sixth form. 

Independent review request

If you challenged a permanent exclusion and are unhappy with the decision, you can ask for a review of that decision by an independent review panel.

The decision letter you get from the school governors tells you how to ask for an independent review panel meeting.

You have 15 school days from the date on the letter to ask for a review. If your request is received any later, you will not get a review so it’s important to make the request as early as possible.

When you ask for a review make it clear:   

  1. Why you are asking for a decision review. 
  2. If you want a special educational needs (SEN) expert to attend – you can ask for this whether or not your child has been assessed as having SEN. The expert will not assess whether your child has SEN needs. 

The independent review panel must be arranged within 15 school days of getting your request. Panels have the power to start a review and continue at a later date if needed.