This article reports and discusses a study which followed up, through case records, 726 children excluded permanently, indefinitely or for fixed–term periods in 1993/4 in 10 LEAs. The outcomes at secondary level in 1998/9 were found to be moderately poor with the problems intensifying for half the sample. Forty six per cent had further primary school exclusions and 36 per cent received exclusions in their secondary education. Looked–after children and those with special educational needs fared worse and achieved less. Case studies showed the kinds of commitment and support that can work even with very difficult cases.