Exclusion can have an adverse impact on not only a child’s education but also their wellbeing, and a long-term consequence of a disrupted education is the limiting prospects for their future. The School Exclusion Service, thanks to funding from the Department for Education, most recently via the Autism Education Trust, aims to change this.
The National Autistic Society’s School Exclusion Service aims to empower families to secure the education their children need and deserve – this includes preventing exclusion, helping to challenge decisions and getting the correct support.
The service also aims to effectuate wider change by ensuring education professionals have access to free resources which aim to encourage understanding of autism and minimise exclusion.
In addition to helping individual families (successfully as demonstrated by the overwhelmingly positive feedback they receive), the service also works closely with external affairs colleagues and contributed to the successful ‘tendency to physical abuse’ loophole upper tribunal appeal led by policy colleagues.
The service has supported over 5,000 families since it began in 2013 and free resources have been prepared and shared with almost 80,000 education professionals.
The School Exclusion Service is coordinated by Andy Cutting who was previously a deputy head and primary school teacher, and is supported by volunteer advisers.