More councils should consider sending children in care to boarding schools as they can boost the educational and social outcomes of vulnerable youngsters, an education minister has said. The Independent reports.
Lord Agnew has welcomed a study showing that 71 per cent of children in care showed a reduced level of risk, and 63 per cent were removed from the risk register after boarding.
The report, which analysed 52 children who were in or could be taken into care in Norfolk over 10 years, argues that placing these youngsters in boarding schools can be more cost-effective.
Lord Agnew, minister for the school system, said: “It is right that all children should be given the opportunity to reach their full potential and this important piece of work demonstrates that – for the right person, at the right school, at the right time – boarding school can be highly effective in improving both social and educational outcomes.”
The report has been commissioned by the Boarding School Partnership (BSP) – a scheme which aims to secure placements for children in care in prestigious boarding schools like Eton College.
Although fees paid by Norfolk ranged from £11,000 per year at state boarding schools to £35,000 a year at independent boarding schools, the study said it was clear that the programme would become “financially efficient” for the council as it spends an average of £56,200 on children in care.
Colin Morrison, chair of BSP, said: “This [study] confirms that local authorities and young people in and on the edge of their care have much to gain from the more extensive use of places in state and independent boarding schools.”
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