Some schools ask parents to take a pupil home or to keep the pupil at home without officially excluding. Parents may have the impression that the school is being compassionate by not adding an exclusion to the pupil's school record. However, this practice can result in pupils losing out on their education and parents losing their right to make representations in writing to the governors or in person at a meeting to consider the decision.
‘Informal' or ‘unofficial' exclusions, such as sending pupils home ‘to cool off', are unlawful, even if the parents have agreed to it. Any exclusion of a pupil, even for short periods of time, must be formally recorded and follow the correct procedure. Exclusion for an indefinite period of time is also unlawful.