The Governors may disagree with the Head teacher’s decision to permanently exclude the child, the exclusion is cancelled and the child is allowed to return to school.
The Governors may agree with the Head teacher’s decision to permanently exclude the child. The parent has three options in the event that the Governors uphold the Head teacher’s decision:
If the parent believes the exclusion was unlawful because it was discriminatory on the grounds of disability then they can apply to the First-Tier Tribunal (FTT) up to 6 months after the date of exclusion. The advantage of applying to the FTT first is that your claim will be expedited, and will be heard within 6 weeks of lodging the claim. If after the FTT the parent wants to apply to the Independent Review Panel (IRP) then they have 15 days to apply from the decision on the FTT claim of discrimination.
You can make an application to the FTT alongside an application to the IRP. This is less favorable as the FTT proceedings will be stayed until the IRP have reached a decision; an FTT application at a later stage will take up to 20 weeks.
The parent may wish to only take the claim to an IRP if, for example, the child does not have a disability which has a long-term and substantial impact upon their day-to-day functioning. The parent has 15 days from the date of the GNC decision to bring a claim to the IRP.
The IRP may quash the decision made by the Governing Body, and direct that the Governing Body reconsider whether or not they agree with the Head teacher’s decision to permanently exclude the child.
The IRP may recommend that the Governing Body reconsider whether or not they agree with the Head teacher’s decision to permanently exclude the child.
The IRP may agree with the Governing Body’s decision, and uphold the exclusion.
NB. The IRP does not have the power to order reinstatement, but does have the power to order a financial readjustment to the school’s budget in cases of maintained schools and pupil referral units, and to the Local Authority in Academy cases. A financial readjustment is ordered when an IRP quashed the decision made by the Governing Body and directed reconsideration and when the Governing Body has not offered to reinstate the pupil within 10 school days of notification. If these tests are satisfied then £4000 is due automatically, and the IRP does not need to reconvene.
The FTT may decide that the exclusion has not been unlawful on the grounds of discrimination.
The FTT may decide that there has been discrimination and can order actions that will help make up for opportunities the child has missed or prevent future discrimination. Section 8 of the FTT claim form asks you to consider what you would like the Tribunal to order if they decide in your favour. Examples include, an order for the:
NB. The Tribunal can only make orders against the responsible body for the school, not against an individual, and cannot make an order of payment of compensation.