COUNSELLING should be offered to children excluded from Flintshire schools, a councillor says.

The suggestion came during a meeting at County Hall where councillors discussed the best options for children looked after by the council.

Llanfynydd councillor Hilary Isherwood said behavioural therapy would help tackle problems with unruly children.

She said: “Exclusion from school does not help the children at all. They are put in a box and nothing is done with them.

“If we have got the same children being excluded time and time again, we need to give them cognitive therapy.

“These children could have suffered sexual or physical abuse and I want to know that the children have access to it.”

The joint meeting of Flintshire's lifelong learning and social and health scrutiny committees was advised that exclusion should be a last resort for extreme behavior.

Ian Budd, director of lifelong learning at County Hall, said: “Schools are discouraged from using exclusion for looked-after children but because of their situations some children can exhibit very difficult and challenging behavior.

“It is hoped that the trend of decreasing use of exclusions for looked-after children can be maintained.”

Mr Budd added: “We need to celebrate the achievement of our looked-after children.

“We are also pleased to announce that we have just set up a work placement scheme between ourselves and Deeside College.

“It is a very special project that has just been put into place.”

Mold East councillor Chris Bithell said: “We can and do make a difference to these children. We have the time and opportunities to make an impact.”