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3.14.5 Protocol with Salford College

SCOPE OF THIS CHAPTER

This Protocol aims to set down in writing how Salford City College working with young people aged 16 to 21 in, and leaving, care, and in respect of whom Salford is/was the Authority they are/were ‘In Care’ of, will work together with Next Step and Connexions to achieve the best possible educational/training/employment outcomes for this group of young people.

AMENDMENT

This chapter was updated in November 2017, particularly to refresh and update the contact details of ‘Next Step’, Connexions and Salford College (see Appendix A: List of Contact Names and Addresses), and to acknowledge that all young people who have a Next Step worker will have a Personal Education Plan (PEP), (see Section 2.2, Joint Working with Individual Young People already in College).


Contents

1. Statement of Joint Objectives and Common Outcomes
2. Process of Working Together
  2.1 Data Exchange / Information Sharing
  2.2 Joint Working with Individual Young People already in College
  2.3 Joint Working with Individual Young People not Currently at College
3. Joint Training
4. Monitoring & Review
  Appendix A: List of Contact Names and Addresses
  Appendix B: Incentive Agreement


1. Statement of Joint Objectives and Common Outcomes

Whilst all Looked After Children and Care Leavers are each individuals in their own right, and need to be treated as such in respect of their particular circumstances and potential, nevertheless it will be recognised from the outset that Looked After Children and Care Leavers ‘statistically’ are a highly disadvantaged group who thus figure disproportionately in ‘negative’ indicators such as more likely to be ‘NEET’, more likely to not have achieved formal qualifications at school, more vulnerable to homelessness, and becoming young parents. As such the primary objective of all parties to this agreement, cognisant of these statistics, will be to work together to provide wherever necessary something “extra” to this group of young people which thus tries to compensate for the additional disadvantages they may face. In this regard common objectives will further be:

  • To make ‘College’ as flexible and attractive option as possible to those not currently at College, but who may well be interested in, or capable of so being;
  • To give the maximum level of support possible to those ‘in’ College, both to ensure they last the course and succeed, or that indeed they are on the ‘right’ course for them in the first place;
  • To give the same mixture of both pastoral and academic support to ensure such young people ‘progress’ to their full potential whilst in College;
  • To ensure that all steps are taken to feed young people into appropriate employment /further education etc when the time comes for them to leave college.

As such the joint outcomes being worked towards will be:

  • That as many Looked After Children and Care Leavers as possible go to college, if this is the best option for them;
  • That Looked After Children and Care Leavers ‘progress’ within College to the same level as any other young people;
  • That Looked After Children and Care Leavers enjoy being at college and gain socially from the experience;
  • That Looked After Children and Care Leavers demonstrate good destinations in employment/further and higher education when they leave College.


2. Process of Working Together

2.1 Data Exchange/Information Sharing

Next Step will share on a three monthly basis with the Salford City - Vicky Evans - those young people who are known to be Looked after children/care leavers (name, DOB, address and next step worker contact details), which in the first instance could then be used in the following three circumstances:

  • For Salford City College to know who it is working with who are Salford Looked After Children or Care Leavers and be able to use that information anonymously for statistical purposes;
  • For Salford City College to be able to target “its” care leavers with specific information if it so wishes setting out what support that young person can expect during their time at College;
  • For the appropriate Academic Progress Manager in that College to make contact with the Next Step worker and where appropriate Connexions Personal Adviser, involved with that young person to explore whether, and how, a more ‘personal’ service to that young person might be offered. It could be that as a result of this initial conversation no ‘follow up action’ whatsoever will be taken; on the other hand arrangements may be made for the Next Step worker to discuss with the young person the benefits of greater involvement with pastoral or academic staff within the college in which case a joint approach may be made to the young person. In this way the sensitivity of the young person as a care leaver and their right to preserve certain personal information about themselves and their situation will be respected but the benefits of potential information sharing will be properly explored.

2.2 Joint Working with Individual Young People already in College

Once the agencies and young person agree to joint working and additional support, the minimum that will occur will be regular telephone updates as to the young person’s progress, and ideally periodic three way face to face meetings including the young person. Next Step, Connexions and College representatives should also feel obliged to keep one another informed of any major developments in the young person’s life, and to try together to find solutions to such issues that if at all possible retain the young person in College.

From time to time additional input of an individual or group nature may be considered to advance that young person’s confidence and well being, educational attainment and achievement. Besides individual advice and support, this may include targeted group work with certain care leavers or targeted ‘destination’ work to try to ensure such young people are evenly represented in progression to employment or higher education once their College course ends.

It is expected that all young people who have a Next step Worker will have a Personal Education Plan (PEP), both agency representatives (College Tutor and Pathway Advisor/Aftercare Worker) will jointly complete the PEP and send this to Next Step.

2.3 Joint Working with Individual Young People not Currently at College

Not only will Salford City College give possible additional support to the City’s Care Leavers who are in College, but they will also give ongoing consideration as to how to get such young people not currently in College into College in the first place if that would be appropriate for them. In this regard Colleges will be open to individual discussions about, and directly with, young people throughout the year and where possible and practicable may arrange for such young people either to join courses ‘late’ or to attend College on some sort of pre-entry programme(s) meeting the learner’s needs prior to these beginning a course proper, which of course usually commence in the Autumn of each year.

For those young people who are still at school and considering progressing to college, the following will be provided to Salford City College: a list of the names and dates of birth of likely applicants plus further details following receipt of applications.


3. Joint Training

Understanding the particular issues facing young people in, and leaving, care and the legal and practical workings of this Protocol, is a topic College staff will need to be aware of. Accordingly, Next Step staff will commit to assisting College staff with this issue and make themselves available for briefing/training sessions as appropriate.


4. Monitoring & Review

Staff from Next Step and Connexions will meet regularly on a quarterly basis to consider and co-ordinate education/training/employment issues for Looked after Children and Care Leavers across the board from school to higher education and all destinations in between. College staff may be invited to such meetings.

However, once every 6 months Next Step, Connexions and College staff will meet formally together to look at the workings of this Protocol, ensure data exchange and joint working issues are progressing smoothly, and to consider any wider strategic initiatives that may be appropriate.


Appendix A: List of Contact Names and Addresses

Salford Leaving Care Service, Next Step
Fitzwarren Street
Salford
M6 5LN
Service Manager Phil Varghese phil.varghese@salford.gov.uk
Corporate Parent Chris Purcell christopher.purcell@salford.gov.uk
Tel No 0161 607 1888  
Salford City College
Pendleton Centre
Dronfield Road
Salford
M6 7FR
  Vicky Evans Victoria.evans@salfordcc.ac.uk
Tel No 0161 631 5000  
Connexions Salford
2 Paddington Close
Off Churchill Way
Salford
M6 5PL
Service Improvement Manager Diane Sproson Diane.Sproson@careersconnect.org.uk


Appendix B: Incentive Agreement

Click here to view 'Incentive Agreement'

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