Education of Looked After Children Policy
At Langdon Park School we believe that all looked after children have a right to expect the best possible outcome from their education. Our school aim is to provide our students with the opportunities and skills to learn and to develop to the best of their abilities.
This policy is written with reference to statutory guidance to governing bodies issued by the DCSF under Section 20 of the Children and Young Persons Act 2008
Staff and Governors are also aware of Local Authority responsibility to promote the Educational achievement of Children and Young People in Public Care under Section 52 of the Children Act 2004
1. Roles and Responsibilities
All staff and governors are committed to ensuring a safe and secure learning environment for all children and have high expectations of all pupils, including those in public care .Staff and governors are aware of the need for confidentiality/safeguarding in regard to any information about looked after children including their care status.
The following people have additional responsibilities:
The named governor for Children in Public Care will ensure:
- That a suitably qualified person has been appointed as designated teacher for children in public care
- That the school has a clear and effective policy for children in care
- That the designated teacher receives appropriate support and training in order to fulfil his or her role.
- That the governing body receives a regular report on the performance of children in care
The named governor is Paul Bargery
The Head teacher will:
- Be responsible for all systems to support children in care
- Ensure that all school staff are aware of the powerful role they can play in significantly improving the quality of life and the educational experiences of children in public care
- Recognise the importance of the role of the designated teacher and liaise with the governing body to appoint an appropriately experienced teacher to that role
- Liaise with the governing body to ensure the designated teacher has the opportunity to acquire, and keep up to date, necessary skills knowledge and training
- Ensure that all staff are aware who the designated teacher is and what their responsibilities are.
- Ensure that the school has clear and effective protocols for gathering and sharing confidential information with LA and other agencies
The Designated Teacher will:
- Keep a confidential and up to date record of all children in public care in the school regardless of which local authority has parental responsibility.
- Ensure all children in public care have met the designated teacher and know what his or her role is.
- Ensure that the teaching and learning needs of children in public care in the school are assessed.
- Promote an ethos of high expectation for all children in public care
- Ensure all children in public care feel welcome and valued and their achievements are recognised in an appropriate way (respecting the need for confidentiality about their care status).
- Ensure that all school staff are made aware of difficulties and disadvantages faced by looked after children generally.
- Ensure that school staff who need to know, are aware of any specific issues faced by individual children in public care, so their needs can be met.
- Liaise with social workers to ensure that all looked after children have a regularly updated Personal Education Plan
- Be responsible for the prompt transfer of information when a child changes school
- Liaise with other agencies as required, especially with regard to achievement, attendance and exclusions
- Ensure that information is kept confidential and shared on a strictly needs to know basis and that the views of children in public care are taken into account in the sharing of information about them and their care status.
- Ensure social workers and carers are aware of who the designated teacher is and what his or her role involves
- Promote good home/ school links with carers.
- Report to the governing body on an annual basis regarding the number of children in public care in the school, how they have achieved, their attendance and details of any exclusions that may have occurred
At present the designated teacher is Helene Scott, Deputy Headteacher.
2. Personal Education Plans for all Looked After Children:
The designated teacher will work with social workers and other professionals to ensure that Personal Education Plans
- Are in place within 20 days of joining the school, or coming into care
- Are reviewed at least twice yearly
- Are made available for statutory care plan reviews
- Identify strengths as well as needs
- Include a review of previous educational targets and the setting of clear, measurable new ones
- Record the child’s interests and talents both in and out of school
- Reflect and are informed by other educational plans such as PSPs and IEPs
- Record and reflect the child’s views.
Looked after children are a priority for admission and the borough’s published admission criteria reflects this
Designated staff and governors will attend Local Authority and other training regarding the roles and responsibilities involved in the education of children in public care.
The Head teacher and Designated Teacher will be responsible for ensuring all staff are briefed on the practice detailed in this policy.