EXCLUDED schoolchildren in Brent will be educated by a new virtual school.

The local authority has bought 25 seats from Accipio - a company that specialises in providing education for children with behavioural problems. And the new scheme means for two days a week they will be home-schooled.

Currently Brent Council will provide the service to Year 10 pupils and they will also attend a Pupil Referral Unit (PRU) for three days a week.

While at home they will use the latest educational software packages and will continue their education into Year 11 where they will have the chance to take GCSEs in core subjects and decide if they want to go on to college.

Paul Roper, head of alternative education services at Brent Council, said: "The virtual school provides an important resource in addition to the PRU and means that by also studying at home the students can fit in everything they need to learn.

"Accipio really understands our needs, the social and educational issues of educating excluded children and always adapts to our requirements."

The latest developments are an advance on the already established Pupil Referral Unit that has run for the last three years. The pupils with behavioural problems will take 45 minute lessons using subject specific teachers who take the register at the start of each class and set assignments for homework at the end.