The Fostering Network is to train 2,000 foster carers and teaching staff as part of a programme to boost the educational fortunes of children in foster care.
The charity’s London Fostering Achievement scheme aims to raise the aspirations and achievements of children living in foster families across the capital.
The training seeks to help foster carers develop the confidence and skills to support children to “achieve the very best”.
Lisa Belletty, programme manager for London Fostering Achievement, said the charity is “very excited” about the programme, which is being funded by Mayor Boris Johnson’s London Schools Excellence Fund.
“We hope to bring training to foster carers who may not have received training in the past,” Lisa said, including examples such as giving training to kinship foster carers, who may not traditionally consider themselves foster carers and therefore gone without any stewardship.
Lucy Peake, director of external affairs at the Fostering Network, said: “It is widely accepted that our family can have the biggest influence on our education. For the vast majority of children in care it is their foster carers with whom they live, learn and grow.
“This programme, delivered with a wealth of expertise, will develop the work foster carers already do and push it to the next level so the children in their care achieve the very best they can at school.”
Belletty said that the training will be led by a mixture of foster carers and social workers to help address key problems foster carers have acknowledged when it comes to improving a child’s education.
“Foster carers have often said to us that they need to have a better understanding of all the roles people and professionals around the child play to help improve their education,” she added.
Only 20.8% of children in care in London get five GCSEs including English and maths compared to a national average of 61.3% for children in mainstream schools.