They said ... We say ..

23rd November 2007 at 00:00
'Thousands of rowdy pupils are allowed back after appeals'

Sunday Mirror

Situations where violent pupils are reinstated in schools are very distressing for the teachers involved. Our page 3 report makes this clear. Even though St Peter's Junior in Raunds, Northamptonshire, was not eventually forced to take back a rowdy pupil, the legal battle was enough to to cause its governors to resign en masse and its headteacher to take long-term sick leave.

But it is extremely misleading to suggest that this happens in "thousands" of cases. As we reported last week, the latest available figures show that there were 9,170 permanent exclusions in 2005-06, of which 1,060 led to appeals. Of these, 240 were decided in favour of the parent, of which only 130 led to the reinstatement of the pupil.

So in what proportion of cases did appeals lead to reinstatement? Just 1.41 per cent. We do not know how many of those pupils were "rowdy" or had been expelled for other offences, such as breaking their school's drug policy.

The Sunday Mirror claimed that heads are "reluctant to expel pupils permanently in case they have to take them back". They should not be.

Log-in as an existing print or digital subscriber

Forgotten your subscriber ID?


To access this content and the full TES archive, subscribe now.

View subscriber offers


Get TES online and delivered to your door – for less than the price of a coffee

Save 33% off the cover price with this great subscription offer. Every copy delivered to your door by first-class post, plus full access to TES online and the TES app for just £1.90 per week.
Subscribers also enjoy a range of fantastic offers and benefits worth over £270:

  • Discounts off TES Institute courses
  • Access over 200,000 articles in the TES online archive
  • Free Tastecard membership worth £79.99
  • Discounts with Zipcar,, Virgin Wines and other partners
Order your low-cost subscription today