Suspensions and exclusions guidance: changes from September 2022

Updated guidance on suspensions and exclusions came into effect from September for new cases arising from that point onwards. Here we help you sort through what's changed and what hasn't so you can start the new year with confidence.

Last reviewed on 8 September 2022
School types: All · School phases: All
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  1. Quick summary: what's changed and what hasn't?
  2. Your role in monitoring pupil moves
  3. Changes to the board's procedures for reviewing suspensions and exclusions
  4. Using off-site direction and managed moves to prevent exclusions
  5. Reporting on suspensions and exclusions
  6. Involving the pupil in the decision to suspend or exclude
  7. Providing education during the first 5 days of suspension or exclusion
  8. Off-rolling and unlawful suspensions and exclusions
  9. Suspending or excluding children with social workers
  10. The DSL's role in suspensions and exclusions
  11. The roles of the virtual school head (VSH) and social workers in suspensions and exclusions
  12. Successfully reintegrating pupils following suspension

Quick summary: what's changed and what hasn't?

The updated guidance on suspensions and exclusions came into effect on 1 September 2022, and applies to maintained schools, academies, alternative provision academies and pupil referral units.

The changes aren't as sweeping as anticipated

While the government's response to the Timpson report in 2019 suggested some major changes might be on the way, it's now clear that:

  • Your school still won't be held accountable for the outcomes of permanently excluded pupils
  • LAs continue to bear financial responsibility for placing pupils who are permanently excluded

Additionally, the promised guidance on the use of removal from classrooms (also called 'internal exclusion') can be found in the DfE's updated behaviour guidance.

Here are the headlines on what's changed

Information on how you should monitor and use suspension and exclusion data Some changes to your procedures when reviewing a suspension or exclusion, including: An updated list of