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Special Schools

Special Schools

Pupil Referral Units (PRUs) are a type of accommodation for pupils who might not otherwise receive a suitable and appropriate education in school because of exclusion or the likelihood of exclusion or for other reasons (alternative Provision).

PRUs are maintained by local authorities and are subject to the Education (School Premises) Regulations 1999  but with certain modifications e.g. relaxing the need for some types of rooms and for playing fields. However, PRUs should ‘provide accommodation suitable for their purpose’ and more detailed information on them is contained in Section 5 of the Welsh Assembly Government Circular 47/2006 and its Annex 5i – Pupil Referral Units.

See commentary on the then English DfES PRU guidance. (document below)

Because of the varied nature of the requirements for Alternative Provision, the range, type and size of PRUs will vary accordingly and the local authority will make provision according to their assessment of local needs.

Although many PRUs are likely to have pupils with behavioural problems, they are not SEBD Special Schools. They may accommodate pupils for a short time before rejoining mainstream education or for longer periods and pupils ages can range from the lower to the higher limits of the statutory school age.

PRUs are generally separate institutions but PRU-type accommodation (e.g. pupil support units) can also be located on school sites, particularly where short term intervention is appropriate to avoid permanent or temporary exclusion from a mainstream school.

Useful links and documents: