Last reviewed on 12 May 2022
School types: All · School phases: All
Ref: 7022

If parents wish to withdraw their child from a subject due to their faith, read our article for help with finding a compromise.

Withdrawal is only a right in certain subjects

In state-funded schools, parents have an automatic right to withdraw their child from:

  • Religious education (RE)
  • Some aspects of relationships and sex education (RSE) *

As for other subjects:

  • In maintained schools, it's up to you to decide whether to grant a request for withdrawal
  • In academies, check your funding agreement before deciding whether to grant a request for withdrawal

In independent schools, there's no automatic right to withdraw pupils from any subject. You can decide how to deal with withdrawal requests.

For more information on the rules, read our article on withdrawing pupils from subjects.

* Parents can withdraw their children from sex education, apart from the aspects covered by the science curriculum. They can't withdraw their children from relationships or health education. Find out more about parents' right to withdraw their children from relationships and health education (primary) and relationships and sex education (secondary)

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