How I can support my child's school placement

How can I support my child's school placement?

It is well documented and evidenced that the educational performance and attainment of children in care is well below that of all children nationally. Some of the significant disadvantage is a result of changes in placement and often changes in schools. This lack of consistency is a major factor impacting on poor educational attainment and although some do well, some children in care have inconsistent experiences of education. Data shows expected levels of achievement for children in care overall remains significantly lower than for all children nationally.

Carers can provide much needed stability and encouragement by working in partnership with schools and other children’s services to improve education attainment for children placed with them. Carers should be involved in all aspects of the child’s education. Carers should attend parents’ evenings, sports days and other school events to show their commitment and support.

Carers should be responsible for:

  • keeping schools informed of changes and emerging problems
  • helping the young person to talk about any worries and speaking on their behalf when appropriate
  • helping the young person to voice their hopes for their future and ensuring these are communicated to school
  • encouraging the young person to develop their talents and recognise their achievements no matter how small
  • responding quickly to requests from school for meetings.

Carers should provide an appropriate learning environment with:

  • a peaceful comfortable place for study/homework time for study/homework books, pens, paper and other resources to support learning
  • provide learning opportunities outside the home e.g. visits to libraries, museums etc  (ensure the child’s ethnicity and background are considered and supported when making plans). 

Carers should take a positive interest in the young person’s education:

  • attending parents’ evenings and encouraging birth family’s involvement where appropriate
  • supporting school policies (discipline, dress etc.)
  • taking an interest in the activities of the school
  • completing communication books such as homework diaries, reading records etc.
  • supporting homework by reading with a child, offering advice and making sure set tasks are completed
  • supporting school events
  • ensuring awareness of the school’s calendar
  • making sure you know the timetables and arrangements for exams and course work completion.