Havering schools issue almost 1,500 exclusions, latest figures reveal
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Schools in the borough issued more than 1,000 exclusions last year, government figures reveal.
State-funded primaries, secondaries and special schools in Havering issued a total of 1,432 fixed period exclusions punishing 879 youngsters out of a total 39,958 by telling them to stay away from school for a set length of time.
There were 248 short term exclusions issed for attacks on pupils and 192 for threatening adults.
Of the outer London boroughs Enfield issued the most (2,951) with Kingston upon Thames issuing the least, 380.
Nationally, fixed term and permanent exclusions have risen over the last five years from 7,616,870 in 2012-13 to 8,025,075 last year.
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London regional secretary for the National Union of Teachers Martin Powell-Davies said: “Unfortunately, these are not figures that come as a surprise.
“Schools are under enormous pressure. They are being told that if they fail to reach externally imposed targets for exam results at primary or secondary school they risk being deemed failing schools.
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“Yet at the same time the government is cutting back on support services.”
As a result students with behavioural, mental health or special educational needs failed to get the support they required, Mr Powell-Davies said.
“For some schools the only way they can cope is to exclude rather than give the support they would like to,” he added.
And he predicted exclusions could increase if the funding pressures on school worsen.
“We have got more alienated pupils not enjoying school because teachers are driven to teach to the test. That provides an environment which is harder for students who are struggling. They can feel demoralised. That creates behavioural issues,” he said.
There were 44 permanent exclusions – where children were kicked out of a school – in Havering. Across London, Ealing permanently excluded the most at 78.
Schools minister Nick Gibb said: “We want every child to benefit from a world class education, with the right support in place, so they have the opportunity to fulfil their potential.
“Schools should only use permanent exclusions as a last resort but we do support teachers in taking proportionate steps to ensure good behaviour.
“Whilst we know there has been an increase in exclusions there are still fewer than the peak 10 years ago. We recognise some groups of pupils are more likely to be excluded than others which is why we launched a review to look at why certain groups are disproportionately affected.”