Welcome to the February 2018 edition of Heads Up
This issue highlights the work of Warwickshire’s Virtual School which oversees the education of approximately 700 children and young people who are "Looked After” by Warwickshire County Council. Historically, outcomes for Children Looked After (CLA) nationally have been very poor. For example, only 14% achieve 5 good GCSEs including English and Maths and only 6% go on to higher education so the government have placed statutory duties on schools and local authorities to give them extra support to try and close the gap in achievement with their peers. In Warwickshire, it is a positive picture with our young people making better progress than CLA nationally, and with more students than ever before going on to university last year.
You can read more about the work of the Virtual School and opportunities to benefit from additional support here.
We are also pleased to be able to update you in this issue on the work that we have been doing to create a renewed vision for education in Warwickshire. A new education strategy, reflecting current challenges and ‘joining up’ the work of teams across the Education and Learning business unit, has now been drafted and will be out for full consultation during the spring term. We are absolutely committed to the strategy being co-produced wherever possible and will be seeking to engage in a variety of ways with a range of partners, including schools, colleges, early year’s providers, parents and students during the consultation period. Read more about the Strategy here. One of the opportunities for face-to-face discussion with headteachers will be at our spring term headteachers' briefing on 14 March - please click here for further details.
We would like to thank those of you who responded to our recent e-communications survey, providing your feedback on this publication, our Twitter account and the frequency of e-communications from the council in general. Your comments will be taken into consideration, and our communications policy with schools will be reviewed to coincide with the implementation of the new education strategy. We will keep you informed of any changes to look out for.
Please feel free to share this newsletter with staff in your school, as well as governors.
With thanks and best wishes,
Chris Malone, Head of Service Education and Learning
Jeremy Dibb, Director of Warwickshire Music and Project Manager Warwickshire Education Strategy
Steve Pendleton, Head of the Virtual School for Children Looked After