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Great Expectations Supporting children and young people in out-of home care to achieve at school Resource overview.

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Presentation on theme: "Great Expectations Supporting children and young people in out-of home care to achieve at school Resource overview."— Presentation transcript:

1 Great Expectations Supporting children and young people in out-of home care to achieve at school Resource overview

2 The resource Is designed to meet the needs of principals, assistant principals, coordinators and teachers Helps schools to support students in out-of- home care by: –explaining how and why students are in out-of-home care –outlining key research about educational outcomes and concerns –providing information and advice about teaching and learning and participation –suggesting key contacts and resources Is available in print and digital formats

3 Professional learning These symbols are used throughout the resource to indicate opportunities for informal or formal professional learning Symbols may be used concurrently The professional learning activities are optional Locate, gather and interpret resources Locate resources on the Internet Use reflective learning techniques Collegiate learning

4 Who is in out-of-home care? In Australia, 24,000 children and young people spend time in out-of-home care each year In Victoria, over 5,000 children and young people live in out-of-home care at any one time –This is an average of two students per Government, Catholic or Independent school –Some schools may have more students in out-of-home care than the average A student may be in out-of-home care for days, weeks, months, years, or until they turn 18 years old

5 Types of out-of-home care Source: Australian Institute of Health and Welfare 2007

6 Relevant Victorian legislation The Child Wellbeing and Safety Act 2005 –The overarching framework for promoting positive outcomes for all children The Children, Youth and Families Act 2005 –Builds on the Child Wellbeing and Safety Act –Guides the actions of all parties in the best interests of vulnerable children and young people

7 Australian and International Research The majority of students in out-of-home care –achieve lower learning outcomes, particularly in literacy and numeracy –suffer from educational deficit –have specific issues relating to development at key stages of schooling –exhibit a range of problematic behaviours

8 Case study – multiple transitions By the time I was in Grade 3 Id been to 14 schools. I had days off all the time, because Mum and I were always moving. Then I went in to care. Then I went with Mum again. Then I went back into care. I finally had two years at one Primary School, but Id missed so much I didnt really understand any of it. DeeJay, 16

9 Strategies for improvement of educational outcomes Greater stability so that children and young people in care do not have to move home or school so often More help from home to support school work giving carers better training in childrens education Help with schoolwork more individual support tailored to the child or young person backed by more training for teachers and social workers Less time out of school – longer in education help with school admissions, better access to education with more support to help young children and young people attend school more regularly and stay on after school leaving age Improved health and well- being with teachers, staff from across government departments, non-government service providers and carers all working together in the interests of the child Source: CREATE Foundation 2006

10 The early years (Prep-Year 4) Children in out-of-home care are significantly below the state norm in reading and numeracy at all levels except Year 3 reading Abuse, neglect and multiple transitions may be factors in development Focus on engagement Support social development and management of emotions Use assessment for learning rather than assessment of learning

11 Case study – the early years By the time Jeff came in to care he was 7 years old. He had no regular sleeping pattern, and could stay awake for 30 or 40 hours at a stretch, then curl up and sleep wherever he happened to be at the time, for 14 or 16 hours. He couldnt sit at a table to eat, and would horde food in his bedroom to snack on whenever he felt hungry. He rarely spoke, never in sentences, and had a vocabulary of less than 25 words. Margaret, carer

12 The middle years (Years 5-8) Children in out-of-home care are behind the state norm in reading and numeracy Development of skills to form and maintain relationships is a critical challenge Transition may exacerbate existing problems They need to be encouraged/engaged with an appropriate and challenging curriculum

13 Learning and older students (Years 9-10) Children in out-of-home care fall further behind the state norm in reading and numeracy They have lower secondary school completion rates and are less likely to progress to higher education May have issues relating to attendance May need ongoing support to achieve academically

14 The Partnering Agreement, 2003 Developed by the Departments of Education and Human Services in 2003 It aims to ensure coordinated support for children and young people in out-of-home care It identifies appropriate polices and processes It requires that schools establish a Student Support Group for each student in out-of-home care

15 Student Support Groups (SSGs) A separate SSG for each student in out-of-home care Members – representatives of the school and the students care team Chaired by the principal or his or her nominee Role of an SSG –Support attendance and participation –Establish shared educational and social goals –Monitor each students progress

16 Case study – Student Support Groups The Student Support Group only meets a couple of times a year, but its made a world of difference to feel that were all working together to assist Jade in this way. Its made all the other interactions we have with the school throughout the year so much easier too – I know who I need to talk to and when, and the school knows that they can always call me. Jemma, carer

17 Individual Education Plans (IEPs) Planning document –Contains information, planning advice, resources and proformas Each student in out-of-home care must have an IEP –Used to document and monitor capability, aptitude, academic progress, social skills and relationships, attendance, and engagement

18 Inclusive curriculum practices Teachers need to identify inclusive learning issues and opportunities in the VELS relating to students in out-of-home care Advice is provided about these in: –Health and Physical Education –Interpersonal Development –Personal Learning –Civics and Citizenship –English –Humanities – History –Science

19 Recommendations for schools Develop Individual Education Plans that identify, record and monitor individual learning strengths and weaknesses Ensure students receive appropriate teaching and support that enables them to achieve national literacy and numeracy benchmarks at all stages of schooling provide inclusive and relevant curriculum activities focus on building positive relationships with adults and peers in the school and focus on building social skills provide non-judgemental familiarisation with classroom values and practices.

20 Online support A digital copy of the resource can be accessed from the publications and media section of the Office of the Child Safety Commissioner website

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