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School move guidance for adopted children and young people

As parents we have to make a number of key choices on behalf of our children, one of those choices being finding a suitable school.

Below is some important information that will help you in identifying the right school for your child.

Tips for parents / carers when looking for a school

  • Check out the school's most recent Ofsted report by looking on the schools' website or at Ofsted. For looked after children, the Government recommend looking at 'Good' or 'Outstanding' schools.
  • Arrange a visit to the school and be prepared to ask questions that will clarify that it is the right school.
  • Apply for a school place. Looked after children and previously looked after children have been given priority in the school admission process.
  • When the school has been identified and a place has been offered, request a meeting with key adults such as adopters, previous foster carers, child's social worker and previous schools.
  • Think about planning the transition. For example visits to the new school, spending a day there, take pictures of the school and staff and walk or drive the new route. 

Questions to ask when visiting a potential school

  1. How many looked after / adopted children do you have?
  2. Who is the designated teacher for adopted children?
  3. What experience do you have of adopted children?
  4. What support mechanisms do you have in place for these groups?
  5. How do you use your Pupil Premium Plus?

What to look out for

  • A school with a good understanding of attachment and the impact of early trauma on learning
  • A designated teacher who is trained in the needs of looked after and adopted children
  • Extensive use of nurture groups
  • A relational based discipline system
  • Concrete policies and procedures
  • Willingness to listen

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