Improving Attainment for Looked After Children

This event will examine priorities and good practice in targeting support to improve the educational outcomes of care experienced young people.

Getting support right

In October 2018, the Scottish Government announced £33m in funding over the next three years to improve the educational outcomes of care experienced young people. Looked after children continue to experience lower levels of attainment and poorer outcomes than their peers – so how can we utilise resources effectively to ensure all of our children and young people can reach their full potential?

A range of services must work together to provide comprehensive support, and with the additional funding going directly to local authorities, it is timely to examine what works in improving outcomes.

Join us as we share insights, priorities, and good practice in improving the educational outcomes of care experienced children and young people.

Key issues we’ll address with you

  • Improving the attainment of care leavers as a policy priority
  • Key challenges facing care-experienced young people
  • Tackling siloisation of service delivery
  • Putting the young person’s voice at the heart of decisions
  • Learning from existing good practice


9:15 Registration and Refreshments

09:45 Welcome and Introduction from the Chair

09:50 Session 1: Priorities

  • Using resources effectively
  • Putting the young person’s voice at the heart of decisions
  • Partnership working 

09:50 MCR Pathways: Relationships Closing the Attainment Gap 

Iain MacRitchie, Founder and CEO, MCR Pathways

10:20 Questions and Discussion 

10:25 Foster Carers as First Educators 

Sara Lurie, Director, The Fostering Network in Scotland
Amy Davidson, Member of the Fostering Network Advisory Group

11:10 Refreshments and Networking 

11:30 Session 2: Key Challenges 

  • Factors leading to lower levels of attainment 
  • Challenges to prevention and early intervention

11:30 Educational Outcomes of Looked After Children: Holding Onto The Complexities

  • Overview of focus of the two key research positions related to the education of Looked After children
  • Details of Dr Walker's Doctoral research which navigated the two key research positions
  • Implications of holding onto the complexity of factors behind the lower educational outcomes of Looked After children

Dr Gary Walker, Teaching Fellow within the Child and Family Studies Team, University of Leeds

Gary's doctoral research focused on better understanding the reasons behind the lower educational outcomes of Looked After children. 

12:00 Beth Hayton, Training and Education Officer, Who Cares? Scotland

Beth will be accompanied by a care-experienced person.  

12:30 Questions and Discussion 

12:40 Lunch and Networking 

13:20 Session 3: Good Practice

We can learn a lot from the work of our peers from across different services and organisations. This session will take a practical look at how to make a success of support in practice that will enable you to develop your learning with your colleagues.

13:20 Transitions to Learning and Work Programme 

  • The impact of youth work approach
  • Bespoke curriculum design
  • Case studies - exploring the challenges face by learners 'Looked After' at home 

Fiona Templeton, Senior Community Learning and Development Worker, Glasgow Kelvin College
Maggie Murphy, Senior Curriculum Manager, Glasgow Kelvin College 

13:50 The Hub for Success

Lorraine Moore, Hub Manager, Napier University 

14:20 Looked After Learning; Using Evidence in Practice to the Best Things in the Best Way

What do we need to be saying and doing differently to ensure that children and young people with experience of care have equity of access to the curriculum and educational opportunities?  We’ll discuss what the evidence tells us about how to make education a positive experience for children and how we can put that into practice in our own settings.

Linda O'Neil, Education Lead, CELCIS

14:50 Aberdeen City Virtual School

Larissa Gordon, Virtual School Headteacher, Aberdeen City Council 

15:20 Questions and Discussion 

15:25 Chair’s Closing Remarks

15:30 Close of Event

*Agenda subject to change

Our events are CPD certified. The full day of this event is equivalent to 3 CPD points.

A certificate is available on request post-event to all attendees.


Speaker callout

We are committed to bringing the latest policy information with engaging dialogue and practical case studies to make a real impact in the public sector. If you are a knowledge expert in your field or have an inspiring case study which would make an impact to Public Sector organisations, we would love to hear from you. Please email with your name and contact details, linkedin profile and a summary of your project or area or expertise and we will be in touch.

COSLA, Verity House, 19 Haymarket Yards, Edinburgh, EH12 5BH | Map


Delegate rates (excluding VAT):

  • Reduced rate: 1 place £145 + VAT (Voluntary / charitable organisations with an annual income of less than £1m)
  • Standard rate: 1 place £245 + VAT | 2+ places £195 + VAT per place (Central government departments and agencies, local authorities, universities, colleges, NHS, police, housing associations, professional associations and voluntary / charitable organisations with an annual income over £1m)
  • Private Sector rate: 1 place £295 + VAT | 2+ places £245 + VAT per place (Commercial organisations e.g. plc, Ltd, LLP)

For all event enquiries please email or call 0131 285 1635

30 May 2019
United Kingdom



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