The Director of Community and Children’s Services to be heard.
Members received a presentation of the Director of Community and Children’s Services regarding the virtual school and corporate parenting.
The Virtual School Head gave a presentation providing an overview of their contribution to the Corporation’s Afghan Education Project, spanning four weeks and accommodating over 250 young migrants from Afghanistan. The project was deemed a success and resulted in all young people being enrolled into City schools. The Board congratulated and thanked officers for their hard work and commitment to the project.
A Member highlighted an issue that one of the academies had experienced with specialist support for the Afghan students. There had been issues with the originally provided staff having stopped attending the school, resulting in parents having to offer volunteer support and a general lack of sufficient trauma and language support. Officers thanked the Member for bringing this to their attention - they confirmed that short-term support should be being provided and agreed to look into this outside of the meeting.
The Chief Executive of CoLAT added that other academy staff also felt that there was limited support available although it was clarified that this was largely due to funding not being able to be adjusted to accommodate the new children until the new year.
Another Member highlighted that, in their experience within the academies, it appeared that translation support would be most beneficial to staff, noting that there were currently long waiting lists of over 12 months for such support.
The Board also noted that following the success of the Virtual School, officers were now in process of finding school places for Afghan children aged 16-17 and going forward would shift focus to adult education.
RESOLVED, that the presentation be noted.