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What we offer | What Birmingham Virtual School can offer | Birmingham City Council

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What we offer

Birmingham Virtual School offers extensive support to schools and other education providers. We use a range of approaches to achieve this including, training and support for designated teachers, consultancy, advice and bespoke support for schools, teachers, governing bodies and social care colleagues.

In 2020-2021 we are expanding our offer to include:

Network meetings - Designated Teacher Network meetings in local network areas to share best practice, and develop an environment for local solutions and interventions such as transition programmes, RAP programmes and avoiding exclusions.

Corporate parent visits - Area education officers will attend educational settings on a regular visit cycle, advising and supporting staff on how to best meet the education needs of young people across the school or education setting at both operational and strategic levels.

Training - Regular training events that support designated teachers, social workers, foster carers, residential staff and other key professionals to understand best practice in raising the educational outcomes for children with care experience.

PEP’s - Delivery of appropriate PEP training / advice to schools and partner agencies.

Provide whole school strategic support in the writing of PEPs and Individual Learning Plans for children with care experience and contribute directly to the quality assurance of PEPs. 

To promote and contribute directly to the actions within the PEP and the quality assurance of PEPs

Carers - Delivery of foster carer training within an allocated geographical area. Providing a response to problem solving discussions with foster carers / parents via phone calls or emails, encouraging and supporting them to develop strong relationships with schools and education providers, and to pass on their concerns to both their own supervising social worker and child’ social worker for them to support.

Consider the need for specific resources to support foster carers, looked after children and young people to improve attendance or support other aspects of their education.

Social care - Continuous support, training and advice for social care colleagues with respect to education policy and practice. Enable them to give educational advice and promote good practice to partner agencies.

Together BVS and social care colleagues will liaise and work with other professionals and agencies in an integrated way to achieve optimal outcomes for CIC and their education.

This will involve compiling and sharing information and specialist knowledge appropriately in line with agreed protocols to support children and young peoples' development and improve outcomes

Pupil premium - Advise, guide and review the use of pupil premium across the schools and settings and report on this to the Virtual School Headteacher .

Plan for the use of the PP+ top slice within your local school network area. To support schools in effectively planning and using the Pupil Premium + for the children/young people in their school.

A review of the use of pupil premium for pupils in a school will be considered and any ineffectual use will be addressed via a Corporate Parent school visit.

Legislation, policies and procedures - To keep schools and key professionals informed around current education legislation, policies and procedures, and funding opportunities related to children in care and promote good practice to partner agencies.

Direct work - Work directly with schools, carers, parents, and other agencies (particularly Inclusions Service and SENAR) to support children in care that are at risk of a negative educational experience. They may:

  • have been or are likely to be excluded,
  • not be attending or currently able to engage positively with their setting,
  • have recently experienced a change or multiple changes in care or educational placement
  • be new to care

Tier 1 universal support - Work alongside school staff and other professionals to put in place effective intervention work for the child/young person at tier 1 universal support and early help stages.

(This could include supporting a child to catch up with missed work, reviewing timetables, advice on how to resolve transport difficulties or supporting the parent/carer to ensure a child attends their educational setting.)

Attendance - Follow up instances of poor attendance as identified through attendance data, PEPs (Personal Education Plan), CLA reviews or Pathway Plans, and support social workers and education setting in engaging other support services to increase participation.

Transitions - To maintain direct support and contact with a child/young person during key transitions and ensure all other necessary professionals are actively engaged to support the young person.

Further information about the support we can offer