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The School Exclusions Service, run by the National Autistic Society, offers advice and information to parents of children and young people on the autism spectrum on all aspects of school exclusion in England. This includes advice on informal (illegal) exclusions; fixed-period and permanent exclusions; how to challenge your child’s exclusion and what you can do if you are concerned that your child is at risk of exclusion.
Children on the autism spectrum are particularly vulnerable to being excluded from school. Sometimes behaviour associated with this hidden disability can be confused with disobedience because of a lack of awareness by both pupils and school staff. A pupil with autism trying to cope with the unstructured social aspects of school life can feel overwhelmed and become anxious, stressed and aggressive, resulting in a meltdown. Head teachers may feel that exclusion is the only solution in order to maintain the safety and well-being of other pupils. Indeed it may be the case that a mainstream school is not the best setting for a particular child. However, disruptive behaviour can be an indication of unmet needs and schools have a duty to make reasonable adjustments to policies and practices to ensure that pupils on the autism spectrum also feel safe, confident and able to experience success.
The Department for Education is funding this service through the AET, to provide information and advice to parents, when a child or young person on the autism spectrum is excluded from school, or is at risk of exclusion; and to support professionals in early intervention strategies and good practice to avoid the need for exclusions.
We aim to reply within five working days. Please note that it may take us longer than this if our Exclusions Adviser is away.
You can find more information on exclusions on the below link.
Our partner, the National Autistic Society, offers up-to-date advice on exclusions from school, college and university in: