If you believe there is an element of discrimination involved with your child’s permanent exclusion you are able to bring a claim to a First-Tier Disability Discrimination Tribunal (FTT) at any time from the date of exclusion.
The Equality Act 2010 defines discrimination as treating someone less favourably then you would treat others due to a protected characteristic.
Protected characteristics are:
While the discrimination needs to be in relation to the decision to exclude in some instances a comment in respect of a protected characteristic is enough.
FT claims exist so as to ensure that decisions to permanently excluded disabled children are not done as a result of conduct directly related to their disability. It also is to ensure that prejudices of Head Teachers are not influencing their decision to exclude.
When there is an element of Special Educational Needs involved with a child a school has a duty to make reasonable adjustments to procedures in place to allow for that child’s education. This can include such matters as disregarding behaviour in direct consequence of their disability. What is vital is to distinguish is if the decision to exclude a disabled pupil for behaviour which arises as a consequence of their disability is unlawful disability discrimination unless the choice to exclude was a proportionate means of achieving a legitimate ends. Proportionate means it was the least extreme option available.
The full guidance can be viewed here.