Driver Youth Trust Director of Education, Jules Daulby, has appeared on Sky News to discuss Pupil Referral Units and the impact of SEND and literacy on exclusions.

Contributing to a Sky News discussion on the sharp rise in the number of pupils excluded from English state schools, Jules emphasised that the majority should be included within mainstream education, but schools aren’t incentivised – by Ofsted or the government – to be inclusive and support these learners.

Identifying SEND and poor literacy as a common characteristic in this cohort of children, Jules noted that pupils are seven times more likely to be excluded if they have special needs “and that’s usually linked to literacy and language”.

On how to respond to this issue, Jules highlighted DYT’s view on the need to help schools support children with SEND and literacy. “We need specialist support, behaviour support, early intervention and funding”.

Jules’ appearance on Sky News follows DYT’s recent research on specialist teachers which found that Local Authorities across the country are facing a shortage of specialists to support learners with literacy difficulties.

Driver Youth Trust calls for an increase in the availability and effectiveness of specialist services, early intervention and dedicated funding. You can read more about our view in our recent response to the Education Committee’s enquiry into the use of alternative provision.

You can watch the full clip of Jules on Sky News here.