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Social Research

Understanding the educational experiences and opinions, attainment, achievement and aspirations of looked after children in Wales

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  • Release date: 11 November 2015
This report presents the findings of research that explored the educational experiences attainment and aspirations of looked after children and young people (LACYP) in Wales.

The findings of the report are drawn from interviews with LACYP and an analysis of available statistics and literature on the looked after children population.

Key findings

  • Statistics from England and Wales on educational attainment show a pervasive gap between the educational attainment of LACYP and non-LACYP at all the educational Key Stages.
  • Young people discussed the educational qualifications of foster carers, and felt that they should have a set of basic skills to enable them to support LACYP's education.
  • A lack of resources and access to funding for educational equipment, particularly ICT was recognised as a key barrier.
  • LACYP were aware of the stigmas that come with their status as 'looked after'. This status was understood increasingly as they grew in age, to be seen by others (peers and adults alike) as a problem, troubled, different, and unlikely to achieve much.
  • The majority of LACYP interviewed were aspirational and had lots of ideas about careers and employment. However, for some participants, the development and realisation of ambitions was at risk because of unresolved emotional problems, limited opportunities and resources, and unstable or unsupportive relationships with carers, teachers and social workers.

Contact

Researcher
Tel: 0300 025 9274
Email: launa.anderson@wales.gsi.gov.uk

Media
Tel: 0300 025 8099

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