The 2016/17 Primary School admissions closing dates are fast approaching; if you are still undecided, here are some tips and advice from our education experts on identifying the right school for your child.
In 2014, some of the educational entitlements given to looked after children were extended to children who had left care through adoption, special guardianship order or child arrangements / residence order in recognition of their continuing level of vulnerability and need. The pupil premium plus was one of those entitlements.
Schools are asked to record eligible children in the Spring (January) School Census which takes place on 21 January 2016. The data from the Spring Census will inform the school’s allocation of pupil premium funding for the next financial year commencing in April 2016.
As we now enter a new year, it’s always nice to look back and reflect on our achievements and I’m pleased to say that 2015 really has been an eventful year for us at Family Futures.
There was a good turnout of family, friends, and professionals for the book launch on Friday 3rd December at Family Futures of “The boy who built a wall around himself”, written by Ali Redford and illustrated by Kara Simpson.
Ali is an adoptive parent who adopted two traumatised siblings. The book uses the wall to symbolise what the child needs to protect themselves in an abusive environment and how it gets in the way when they move to a loving home. It tells how someone “kind ” helps the little boy to break down the wall. It’s a lovely story that all children will understand and many parents will relate to.
’Due to the unprecedented demand that has arisen from provision of the ASF, Family Futures has had to make the difficult decision to suspend our intake of referrals for assessment. This is a temporary measure aimed at ensuring our therapeutic service remains a quality one. Our current waiting list extends to May 2016 and we feel it is inappropriate to make families wait beyond this whilst they could seek alternative provision. We will review the situation again in March 2016’’.
In recognition of Anti-Bullying Week, we are raising awareness of bullying amongst adopted children and providing some advice on what to do if you suspect your child may be getting bullied.
Helping young people transition to adulthood
We know from adopters, children and independent evidence that there is insufficient support for young people aged 16 to 18 in the UK that have suffered abuse and neglect in early childhood. At this vulnerable age, young people are making a difficult transition to adulthood and this lack of support has significant effects on emotional wellbeing, with increased likelihood of family breakdown, substance misuse, homelessness and mental health problems such as depression and anxiety.
That is why we wanted to launch our own Young People’s Programme, specifically aimed at addressing these needs, so we are thrilled that Children in Need have awarded us a grant to allow us to get this project up in running.
First of all, we’d like to congratulate First4Adoption for doing such a wonderful job of raising awareness of the needs of harder to place children during National Adoption Week.
We continue to see a lot of news reports around adoption and TV dramas featuring adoption stories; as I’ve mentioned in previous blogs, no matter who you speak to, there always seems to be someone, somewhere who has a story to share on a friend who has adopted or is going through the adoption process, in many cases they cite the process as being stressful, laborious, intrusive and so on. I am sure there are many cases where the experience isn’t as good as it could be, but given the hard work so many of us in the adoption sector put into making it a supportive and empathetic process, I sometimes wonder if some of the negativity you hear is down to the fact that as a nation, we tend to share bad news & experiences more than the good news?!
Either way, we are keen to continue to promote the positive experiences of our adopters and shed some light into why we do certain things as part of the adoption process and why they should be seen as a positive rather than a negative, so in this blog we are going to tackle stage one and two of the adoption process.
We are thrilled to announce that Alan Burnell, Co-Founder of Family Futures, has won the ‘Lifetime Achievement Award’ and Zach Gomm is Runner Up for the ‘Adopter Champion of the Year Award’ at the National Adoption Week Awards.
The theme for this edition of our newsletter is Positivity – we’d like to share with you some of the positive outcomes of the work we have been doing lately; give you an update on some of our forthcoming events & courses and introduce you to some new members of our team. Click here to open our newsletter.