The number of children with autism being excluded has risen dramatically in recent years, government data has shown, with campaigners claiming they are being “shut out” of schools. Department for Education statistics obtained via a Freedom of Information request by the charity Ambitious about Autism, show a 59 per cent rise in exclusions among this group of children, from 2,831 in 2011/12 to 4,485 in 2015/16. Over the same period, which covers the most up-to-date information available for England, exclusions for all pupils rose by just four per cent. Ambitious about Autism said that although there has been an increase children with autism in schools, the exclusion rate remains disproportionate to their number. Children with autism account for just over one per cent of the school population, but make up 2.5 per cent of all exclusions. Read more.