Centre for Research in Education Inclusion and Diversity (CREID)

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Disparities in rates of permanent exclusion from school across the UK

This interdisciplinary project will examine practices of permanent disciplinary exclusion from schools and trajectories for young people post-exclusion in Oxfordshire.

Past research has shown that permanent disciplinary exclusion has many negative long term consequences for young people, including: poor educational attainment; prolonged periods out of employment and subsequent scarring effects; poor mental and physical health; involvement in crime; and homelessness, all of which have concomitant costs for society. However, little is known about how these factors inter-relate. By coming together as the Excluded Lives team, researchers from the Departments of Education, Law, Psychiatry, Social Policy, and the Internet Institute, as well as colleagues who have a background in the voluntary sector (e.g. The National Children’s Bureau) will work together to address this gap in knowledge.

Oxfordshire provides an important site of investigation for this pilot study due to: the conversion of many maintained schools to Academy status; the enrolment of young people into Further Education (FE) colleges as an alternative to exclusion; cuts to behaviour support and early intervention services; and an upward trend in permanent disciplinary exclusion in primary schools – with children as young as four being excluded. These issues highlight the need to look across age groups, school types and services to investigate school exclusion. The Excluded Lives team will have exclusive access to data held by Oxfordshire County Council (OCC). By collating data from education, social care, youth offending, employment and health the group will begin to map the different services that excluded young people have contact with, and understand the interplay of the key factors. This secondary data analysis will inform a later stage of research, where both traditional and innovative methods will be used to understand the individual, school, family and societal consequences of permanent school exclusion. This investigation will therefore achieve two aims; 1) to provide OCC with a detailed analysis of the ways their departments interact and use their data to support excluded children and 2) to develop and pilot an interdisciplinary research methodology for studying permanent disciplinary exclusion.

Website of the 'Excluded Lives' project

Funder

John Fell Fund (internal to University of Oxford)

Start date May 2017
End date August 2018

Research team

  • Harry Daniels, Ian Thompson, Alice Tawell, Steve Strand, Susan James Relly, Judy Sebba, Hilary Emery, Ewart Keep and Sarah Cox (Department of Education, University of Oxford)

  • Rebecca Eynon (Department of Education and Oxford Internet Institute, University of Oxford) 

  • Lucinda Ferguson (Faculty of Law, University of Oxford) 

  • Rachel Condry (Department of Criminology, University of Oxford)

  • Mina Fazel (Department of Psychiatry, University of Oxford)

  • Mary Daly (Department of Social Policy and Intervention, University of Oxford)

  • Jill Porter (Institute of Education, University of Reading)

  • Gillean McCluskey, Ingrid Obsuth (University of Edinburgh)

  • Tony Gallagher, Gavin Duffy, Gareth Robinson and Laura Lundy (Queens University Belfast)

  • Chris Taylor and Sally Power (Cardiff University)

Outputs and Activities

Conference papers:

Papers presented as part of the session: The policy, practice and prevalence of school exclusion in the UK

  • Daniels, H., Thompson, I. and Tawell, A., 2017. Patterns and processes: exclusion from school in England. Paper presented at the Scottish Educational Research Association Annual Conference: Educational futures in a changing landscape: bridging boundaries or "mind the gap"?, University of West of Scotland, Ayr, Wednesday 22nd November.
  • Duffy, G., 2017. Patterns and processes of school exclusions in Northern Ireland. Paper presented at the Scottish Educational Research Association Annual Conference: Educational futures in a changing landscape: bridging boundaries or "mind the gap"?, University of West of Scotland, Ayr, Wednesday 22nd November.
  • McCluskey, G., 2017. Patterns and processes: exclusion from school in Scotland. Paper presented at the Scottish Educational Research Association Annual Conference: Educational futures in a changing landscape: bridging boundaries or "mind the gap"?, University of West of Scotland, Ayr, Wednesday 22nd November.
  • Power, S., 2017. Patterns and processes of school exclusions in Wales. Paper presented at the Scottish Educational Research Association Annual Conference: Educational futures in a changing landscape: bridging boundaries or "mind the gap"?, University of West of Scotland, Ayr, Wednesday 22nd November.
Papers/reports:
  • Tawell, A., Daniels, H., Strand, S., Thompson, I., Keep, E., Cox, S., Ferguson, L., Condry, R., Arnez, J., Porter, J., Fazel, M., Eynon, R. and Daly, M., (in progress). Working paper: A cross-disciplinary literature review on the causes, patterns and consequences of permanent exclusion from school.