Education Select Committee report on alternative provision and...
Responding to the Education Select Committee’s report Forgotten children: alternative provision and the ever increasing scandal of exclusions, Stuart Gallimore, ADCS President, said:
“We welcome the focus on inclusion in this report. Schools sit at the heart of our communities, they should work for all children and young people but too many learners are being excluded or placed in alternative provision despite this not being in their best interests. Inclusion, not exclusion, should be at the heart of our education system, alternative provision should be an intervention but for too many young people it is becoming a destination.
“ADCS is concerned that increased accountability and competition in the school system, a high stakes inspection regime and significant exam, curriculum and funding reforms are resulting in a growing number of children and young people being squeezed out of the mainstream school system or disappearing entirely from sight. An inclusive system would not see 40 children and young people permanently excluded each day in 2016/17, up from an average of 35 per day in 2015/16 and 30 per day the year before that. We know children eligible for free school meals are more vulnerable to exclusion than their peers, as are children with SEND, from some BME groups and in care, for many this is the first step along a journey that ultimately ends with social exclusion in adulthood too. This cannot be an accepted reality for our children and young people. We hope government hear and, crucially, act on the recommendations in this report.”