The rules on suspensions and expulsions are different depending on whether you go to a public government school or a private school. This page only applies if you go to a public school in Queensland. If you attend a private, independent or Catholic school please contact us here with your question.
Every Australian child has a right to education . This means your school cannot suspend or expel you without very good reasons and a clear process. It also means your school must act fairly if they are planning on suspending or expelling you from school. If you think you are being unfairly punished, you may be able to appeal the decision.
Suspension is when the school asks you to leave school for a short time (between 1 and 10 days) or a longer time (11 to 20 days).
Your school rules (also called a Responsible Behaviour Plan) explains what behaviour your school expects and what you can be suspended for. However, there are also general rules that apply in all public schools in Queensland:
You can be suspended from your school by your Principal if:
When deciding whether to suspend you, the Principal also has to consider your individual circumstances. You can be suspended for stuff that happens outside of school hours, or not on school premises.
Before the suspension begins, the principal must:
Shortly after the suspension starts, the Principal should give you a written notice outlining how long your suspension is for, and why you are suspended. If the suspension is for more than 10 days, the notice has to give you information about how to appeal it.
While you are suspended, the school has to make sure (within reason) that you can continue to learn. This may include giving you stuff to work on from home. The school also has to tell you who you can talk to at the school while you are suspended.
You can’t appeal a suspension if it is for less than 10 days. If you think your school acted unfairly and didn’t follow the rules or correct process, you can make a complaint to the Department of Education
For more information on how to do this, see: http://education.qld.gov.au/schools/about/pdfs/making_a_complaint.pdf
If you’ve been suspended for more than 10 days, you can appeal the decision. If you want to appeal, you should do this as soon as possible after you are told about your suspension. You should send a written letter to the Director-General. You can find their details on the notice that your principal gave you when you were suspended. In the letter to the Director-General, you can explain why you think the decision was unfair and the facts you are relying on to prove your argument. For an example letter you can use, see page 2 of this document: http://education.qld.gov.au/behaviour/docs/submission-guide-disciplinary-absences.pdf
The Director-General will consider your application as soon as practicable and let you, your parents and the principal what the outcome is. They also need to give a written notice of what their decision is.
Click here for more information about discrimination at school.
Your suspension or exclusion will be recorded. However, information about your suspension or expulsion is not public information. You and your parents will have access to your records.
When applying for a job, your report card will not show whether you have been suspended or excluded but it will show how many days you didn’t go to school (including absences because of suspensions or exclusions).
If you have been suspended or expelled from school you should get independent advice about your rights as soon as possible. You need to act quickly to ensure that you minimise as much as possible any disruption or break in your education.
People you can talk to:
|Youth Advocacy Centre in Wilson:
Ph: (07) 3356 1002
Email: [email protected]
Logan Youth Legal Service in Logan
Phone: (07) 3826 1500
Finally, if you are finding that being out of school is very difficult and stressful and you are feeling a bit down you can call Kids Helpline or check them out here: http://kidshelpline.com.au/teens/
The Helpline is free and you don’t have to tell them who you are. You can also call them for free on 1800 55 1800.
If you have a problem or a question, you can send it to us today and we can provide you with free advice, information and referrals to help solve your problem. Just click on the button below.Get help now