A local school for children with complex needs is taking legal action in an attempt to stop a boy with autism from being readmitted on the grounds that his behaviour has allegedly put staff and students at risk.

According to the Irish Times, the 15-year-old – who has a moderate to severe intellectual disability and is non-verbal, was expelled from the special school in Meath in November.

The school is said to have documented a number of incidents last September where the boy was alleged to have kicked a staff member, attempted to headbutt a therapist and used his fists to hit staff members.

However, the Department of Education last month directed the school to arrange for the boy’s return to class after finding that his expulsion was not warranted.

The newspaper reports that a three-person committee found that “all reasonable efforts to allow the boy participate and benefit from education had not been fully exhausted”.

The fact that the teen had been out of school for six months due the COVID-19 pandemic, was seen as a “major contributory factor” in the frequency of the incidents.