A SHOCKING number of children and teenagers have been 'permanently excluded' from schools in Bridgwater during the current academic year.

Areas included in the data revealed by an Freedom of Information (FOI) request by the Mercury include the following wards: Bridgwater Sydenham, Bridgwater Victoria, Bridgwater Eastover, Bridgwater Hamp, Bridgwater Quantock, Bridgwater Bower.

Across these areas, since September 2023, a total of 20 pupils have been expelled from their schools by March 31, 2024.

The total number is just six expulsions off the figure from the 2022-23 academic year, in which 26 students were expelled from September to the end of July.

The following reasons resulted in the 20 expulsions in Bridgwater so far during the current academic year:

  • Damage
  • Persistent disruptive behaviour
  • Physical assault against adult
  • Physical assault against pupil
  • Use or threat of offensive weapon
  • Verbal abuse/threats to adult
  • Verbal abuse/threats to pupil

Somerset Council declined to provide information on the schools from which these children were expelled or excluded, due to 'commitment to ensuring that the personal data held on students remains confidential'.