More cuts to the most vulnerable school pupils put forward

Newbury today is reporting that more cuts to services helping the most vulnerable school pupils are being proposed by West Berkshire Council in a drive to make savings of more than £1m.

New proposals have been put forward to cut by half a service that supports children who are expelled from school, and to close two pupil referral units for excluded children at Newbury and Thatcham.

Explaining the decision, the council, which is responsible for arranging suitable provision for excluded pupils, blamed a lack of funding for the proposed cuts. It said: “Like many councils, we have to make difficult decisions about how we spend money. We can no longer afford to deliver alternative provision in the same way.”

The proposals include allowing some excluded pupils to continue their education at the same mainstream schools from which they were excluded, and bringing the number of PRUs down from six to four.

Defending the cuts, the executive member for education, Dominic Boeck, said: “Our proposal is to extend the delivery of our current service. At a high level, we would like to prioritise our resources where we can make the biggest difference to vulnerable pupils and students.

A final decision will be made at a meeting of the executive committee on January 19 and, if approved, change would be implemented from September 2017.

More at: More cuts to the most vulnerable school pupils put forward

Do you think an excluded pupil could continue their education at the very same school from which they were excluded? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below or on Twitter ~ Nellie

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Comments

  1. fionawallace20

    SchoolsImprove Changes afoot for COBSPRU too – already offer traded outreach. Schools must understand real cost of supporting excl pupils

  2. JamieGBarry

    SchoolsImprove I’m sure this isn’t a unique situation. Similar cuts being faced in Bristol. Worried what the future holds for our children.

  3. @gov2 The Academies Commission (2013) said the academies programme risked the emergence of a group of hard-to-place children.  http://www.localschoolsnetwork.org.uk/2013/03/las-cant-direct-academies-to-accept-pupils-this-could-have-negative-effect-on-hard-to-place-pupils-academies-commission-warns
    At the same time, financial restraints make it more difficult to support these children adequately.

  4. @gov2 The Academies Commission (2013) said the academies programme risked the emergence of a group of hard-to-place children.  http://www.localschoolsnetwork.org.uk/2013/03/las-cant-direct-academies-to-accept-pupils-this-could-have-negative-effect-on-hard-to-place-pupils-academies-commission-warns
    At the same time, financial restraints make it more difficult to support these children adequately.

  5. wasateacher

    It makes me so angry to see stories like this whilst so many of the education stories are about: ‘free’ schools which open briefly at huge expense and then close because they are nearly empty; ‘free’ school projects which are given money but never open; academies and ‘free’ schools which are the victims of fraud; the number of academy trusts which have ‘financial notices to improve’.

    The Government is determined to push through its failing academies agenda and the victims are the vulnerable.

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