Only 6% of care leavers go to university. They deserve better chances.
THE GUARDIAN, November 7, 2017 – Ruth Kelly
As those who work in education and social care will know, the issue of how we help children in care is a challenge that can sometimes feel intractable.
Those who have been in care between the ages of 10 and 17 are five times more likely to be convicted of a criminal offence or subject to a final warning or reprimand. Children in care are also five times more likely to have been excluded(pdf) from school. Overall, they face a much higher risk (pdf) of homelessness, teenage pregnancy and unemployment overall .
Evidence from the British Birth Cohort Studies shows that progressing further on the educational ladder is linked to improvements in mental and physical health, employment, income, housing, family life, as well as absence of addiction, and lower risk of involvement in the criminal justice system. Yet, just 6% of young people with experience of the care system will attend university, compared to almost 50% of the general population.