Darren Martindale, Virtual School Head for
Looked After Children (LAC), presented the Virtual School Head
Annual Report for 2015/16.
In response to questions from the Board, D.
Martindale stated the following:
With regard to the impact that Pupil Premium had on the attainment
of LAC pupils, the negative impact of 1.47% reflected the occasions
when a young person may not be ready for intervention or one to one
support. It was not a funding
The differentials between schools outside of and inside
Wolverhampton were recognised and an officer had been appointed to
focus upon out of city LAC. In
addition, D. Martindale and his Teacher Advisor had placed
additional focus on those young people and how the Pupil Premium
was being used. Work was also underway
to improve datasets to enable earlier intervention;
The ‘Aspire to Uni’ project’ aimed to address the
drop-off in attainment levels between KS2 and the taking of GCSEs
through allowing access to university at KS3.
It was important to track attainment levels and identify issues
during teenage years as the data obtained could be quite blunt due
to the varied issues affecting young people of that
age. Many teenagers entering care
already had entrenched educational issues but it should be
recognised that many achieved beyond expectations and some GCSEs
results had been excellent;
Evidence indicated that children that weren’t school-ready
with regard to literacy skills continued to experience problems at
KS1. For that reason, D.
Martindale’s team had been reconfigured to have officers
focussed upon Early Years. Those
officers would also look at the whether or not children born in the
summer were particularly affected. E.
Bennett, Service Director for Children and Young People, added that
there was a fine balance to be had with regard to preparing
children for school as bonding with carers could be considered as
important as attending nursery;
22 LACs had gone on to attend university. Councillor Malcolm added that it was important to
obtain data and feedback on the educational attainment of children
placed less than 20 miles from Wolverhampton with a view to helping
them achieve a university place.
Resolved: That the Virtual School Head
Annual Report for 2015/16 be noted.
Gibson, who had joined the meeting during consideration of the
previous item, took the Chair.