88% reduction in school exclusions!

The information for my headline is there but well down the page. Not anywhere, of course, is the wider context about school exclusions across Scotland and in comparison with anywhere else.

Not for the first time, I’m going to be lazy and repeat some research I did a few years ago. Apologies but I feel sure some of the A students who visit here will dig up something more recent .

From TuS in August 2019:

Permanent school exclusions from Scottish schools have been falling in the period of SNP government. In 2006/7, 248 pupils were permanently excluded, and the figure has fallen steadily to only 5 in 2016/17.


In England, even national figures from the Department for Education indicate that 6 685 pupils were permanently excluded in 2015/16. That would be a staggering one thousand three hundred times more than in Scotland, but the problem may be even more serious:

‘A study by the Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR) thinktank claims these figures mask the true scale of the problem, with pupils forced out of mainstream schools by informal methods that are not captured in national exclusions data. The report, published on Tuesday, says 48,000 pupils are being educated in the alternative provision (AP) sector, which caters for excluded students, with tens of thousands more leaving school rolls in what appear to be illegal exclusions.’


If correct, English schools are permanently excluding pupils at nearly ten thousand times the rate in Scotland – 8% of the population but only 0.010416% of the permanent school exclusions.

Just one of the reasons why school exclusions need to be minimised is revealed in a further Guardian article:

‘Excluding children from school may lead to long-term psychiatric problems and psychological distress, a major new study has shown. The research by the University of Exeter also finds that poor mental health can lead to school exclusion. The study found a “bi-directional association” between psychological distress and exclusion: children with psychological distress and mental health problems were more likely to be excluded but their exclusion acted as a predictor of increased psychological distress three years later on.’


Previously, I’ve written about possible differences between life in Scotland and that in England with a view to suggesting Scotland is becoming a more collectivist, communitarian, inclusive place, maybe even a ‘better nation’, while poor England, especially under (under is the word) the Tories, is becoming a more divided, unequal and brutal place. Here are earlier reports suggesting a difference that makes a difference:

Scotland takes nearly 26% of Syrian refugees settled in UK with only 8% of the UK population

58 000 baby boxes to help increase life chances and now Scotland will be the first country in the world to provide free sanitary products to ‘end period poverty’. This is the kind of country I want to live in.

Scots the least respectful of the upper classes: More evidence of a difference that makes a difference?

Scientific evidence that Scots tend to be different from the other groups in rUK?

Racial hate crimes increase by 33% in England & Wales while falling by 10% in Scotland: Who says we’re not different?

‘Scottish tooth fairies are the most generous.’ See, even more evidence we are different.

Who said Scots were not more left-wing than those in the rest of the UK?

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is untitled.png

6 thoughts on “88% reduction in school exclusions!

    1. Dear ad ( or do you prefer the more formal ad 98832376 ? ) , Your Daily Mail response is typical of the line taken by many who shamelessly insult Scottish Education ( and its Government ) behind an anonymous byline !

      School exclusion is rarely for simple bullying as you imply .
      Having worked many years in Scottish schools the reasons for permanent exclusions are many and varied .

      I look forward to your thoughts on solving other social problems with the deep insight that you clearly bring to any discussion .

      Liked by 2 people

  1. Have you seen this.

    Douglas Ross claims Nicola Sturgeon will step down as First Minister by next election.
    Plenty of magic mushrooms in Moray,I suppose we will be bombarded with his rubbish next week,all over BBC and them praising the Tories and the new Lord.
    Barstewards all of them

    Liked by 4 people

  2. Research? You did research, John? No wonder the BBC dismisses your feeble complaints, based on nothing but facts!

    The BBC Way:—you pluck a number out the air, double it, then take away 16. Voila!

    Every schoolboy (in Eton) knows this!

    Liked by 4 people

  3. Schools used to far too readily exclude children I am sure in Scotland, when the Labour party were at the helm at Holyrood. Sadly many children excluded have learning difficulties, and very often are undiagnosed but are on the autism spectrum. Excluding children saves the LEA and council and whichever gov is in power, money. Schools age children not in school, saves what, £15k a year? It’s much more if the child has special educational needs for eg for learning disability, because those kids require a lot of support which costs money.

    My son was temporarily excluded by the school (which he found hellish), I can’t even remember why now but the head teacher said, ‘don’t let it spoil your weekend’!!! OMG, that was it, home education from then on, cost me a career, saved the Labour council £25K a year for oh, let me see, at least 5 years in which they reneged on their duty to educate my child according to his’ age, aptitude and ability’. They were clearly delighted when we took him out of school for good!
    He went on to teach himself to write and speak Japanese, and passed the exams with flying colours. An amazing young man, but actually he was let down by the Labour party, in their failure to fulfil their duty, not surprised at all though.

    The Labour council, Labour government at Holyrood and the school and their dreadful staff, totally let down children they were supposedly educating, disgraceful.

    To exclude a child should never ever happen, they and their families should be supported, and all avenues covered in terms of diagnosis etc, which will not happen in England, not when money is going to be tight, even more now. Can’t see English councils affording to have children properly dignosed and appropriately supported,
    but of course, societally, it will cost more in the long run, but who cares, not the Tories or Labour!!!

    I hope that Scotland is moving forward re this now, because in the long run, it costs less to cater for childrens’ needs appropriately, rather than chuck them on the scrap heap! Not everyone can choose to or would want to home educate, as an alternative to inadequate provision in education by the state.

    Liked by 3 people

Leave a Reply to James Mills Cancel reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.