The Educational Progress of Looked After Children in England: Linking Care and Educational Data (Overview Report)

RESEARCH REPORT

Authors: Judy Sebba, David Berridge, Nikki Luke, John Fletcher, Karen Bell, Steve Strand, Sally Tomas, Ian Sinclair, Aoife O’Higgins (prepared for The Nuffield Foundation)

Year: 2015

Report Summary:

This project was the first major study in the UK to explore the relationship between educational outcomes, young people’s care histories and individual characteristics. It links the National Pupil Database and the Children Looked After Database for the cohort who were eligible to take GCSEs in 2013. 

The main analysis concentrated on the progress at secondary school (Key Stages 2-4) of young people who had been in care for over a year at the end of Key Stage 4. Detailed statistical analysis was complemented by interviews with 26 young people in six local authorities and with adults significant in their educational careers, including foster carers, teachers, social workers and Virtual School headteachers (a Virtual School acts as a champion within a local authority, and aims to improve and promote the education of all children in care as if they were in one single school).