Alternative Learning Provision

Alternative Learning Provisions (ALP's) offer an opportunity to pupils who are unable to attend mainstream education settings for health, emotional or behavioural reasons.

Alternative provision (AP) is defined as:
“Education arranged by local authorities for pupils who, because of exclusion, illness or other reasons, would not otherwise receive suitable education; education arranged by schools for pupils on a fixed period exclusion; and pupils being directed by schools to off-site provision to improve their behaviour”

(Alternative Provision Statutory Guidance for Local Authorities. DfE January 2013).

In Bath and North East Somerset, the local authority retains responsibility for providing education for pupils who have received a permanent exclusion and for those who due to ill health cannot access school. These are both commissioned services with registered DFE providers overseen by the Alternative Learning Team. 

Our Day 6 provision for pupils who have been permanently excluded is provided by the following DFE registered providers:
For Primary: Lansdown Park Academy
For Secondary: St. Matthias Academy

Our Hospital Reintegration Service (HERS) is provided by The Partnership Trust, based at Abbot Alphege Academy.  Details of this service and the referral process can be accessed via the HERS page on The Hub

External Commissioning of Alternative Provision

Schools and other education providers are able to commission their own alternative providers. The majority of these are DFE unregistered providers. Bath and North East Somerset have produced a directory which enables external commissioners to look at the provision that is on offer in the local authority. The organisations and agencies in this list have completed due diligence checks in the local authority but the school or education setting, as commissioners, remain responsible for ensuring that the provision being offered meets the statutory educational and safeguarding requirements outlined by the Government. Schools should refer to the advice outlined in the relevant documents.

School Inspection Handbook (

Alternative Provision: Statutory Guidance for Local Authorities

Schools are expected to conduct their own quality assurance of all places commissioned and where possible it is recommended that schools use Local Authority approved providers. 

Advice for schools and education settings commissioning external alternative provision

For detailed advice about commissioning and quality assuring external alternative provision see BNES AP Guide for Schools and Commissioners found below. Further advice is also available on our Alternative Provision page over on The Hub.
For further information contact: