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Expanded duties from September 2021

From September 2021, Virtual School Heads will receive extra funding from local authorities to help all children with social workers make educational progress. 

Virtual School Heads will work with early years settings, schools, colleges and social care leaders to address the disadvantages that children with a social worker can experience.

Funding for this expanded role is confirmed until March 2023

Support from the Virtual School Head

The Virtual School Head will demonstrate the benefits of attending an education setting, as well as ensuring there are mechanisms in place to offer advice and support to teachers and social workers, with the aim of narrowing the attainment gap. 

The additional role of the Virtual School Head does not require the Head to provide direct intervention, help and support for individual children with a social worker or their families.

This guidance does not change existing duties for looked-after and previously looked-after children.

Support from the Virtual School 

We will provide a number of support services to social care teams and schools:

Universal offer

All schools can contact either of our advisory teachers direct to ask for advice for any child open to social care. The Virtual School will offer free training to support this cohort of young people.

Targeted offer

Following a referral for support from social care or a school, advisory teachers will offer individual advice for a named child and follow up with the school and social care.

Specialist offer

Following identification from attendance data, 70 most vulnerable taken onto advisory teachers caseloads. Additional funding offered to support a bespoke plan. Where appropriate, termly meetings with school, families and social care to review impact.

Advisory teachers

Our advisory teachers for children with a social worker are:

  • Early Years and Primary: Julia Wallcroft
  • Secondary: Ruth Taylor

You can contact Julia, Ruth and other members of our team through our contact page