Primary legislation to prevent schools from selecting by ability has been introduced in parliament today.
The Education and Inspection Bill will ensure the practice of interviewing parents of prospective pupils will be outlawed and schools will need to act in accordance with a tough Admissions Code.
In addition, school staff’s power to tackle disruptive behaviour will be set down in the legislation. Powers on confiscation, detention, using force and tackling unacceptable behaviour will be set beyond challenge to demonstrate that poor behaviour will not be tolerated.
Badly-behaved pupils could be forced to work at the weekends or face end of term detentions to catch up on work.
“Greater use of parenting contracts and reintegration interviews will make parents tackle problem behaviour, and ensure their child is properly supervised during short suspensions,” said an overview of the Bill.
Parents also face fines for a new offence of allowing an excluded child to be found in a public place during school hours without good cause.
The Bill also allows for local authorities to take on a decision-making status about issues such as school expansion and will have new powers to intervene in failing schools.
There will also be measures to promote healthier school meals.