Support the #Respect4SocialWork campaign today and celebrate the social work profession.
Make an Enquiry
Contact Us

Number of children ‘Staying Put’ falls

The number of children in foster care ‘Staying Put' after their 18th birthday has reduced drastically last year.

In 2015-16, 2,190 young people stayed with foster parents after turning 18. However this fell to 1,570 young people in 2016-17, Ofsted figures show. In 2015-16, 54% of foster children were supported to stay with their carers whereas this was 46% of foster carers in 2016-17.

A higher percentage of young people stayed put in local authority foster families – 52% of young people compared to 38% in IFA foster families.

“The ‘staying put’ initiative was introduced to give stability and support to young people when they turned 18. However, young people were less likely this year compared with last to stay put with their foster carers when they turned 18. In particular, the proportion of young people staying put in IFAs fell to its lowest point since 2013,” said the report.

This is in line with the Education Select Committee report on fostering, which states that many young people are missing out on the staying put opportunity due to a lack of clarity and consistency around its implementation.

The Ofsted release also found that, at 31 March 2017, there were 83,930 approved fostering places, representing a 1% increase on the previous year (83,175). The proportion that were filled increased from 61% to 62% but the proportion that were ‘not available’ also increased, from 16% (13,000) to 18% (15,520).

However, the number of approved fostering households continued to decrease steadily. There were 43,710 approved fostering households as at 31 March 2017, a 1% decrease from last year when there were 44,320). The overall number has decreased by 2% since March 2014 when there were 44,780 approved fostering households.

Ofsted revealed that more applications were considered this year but conversion of completed applications to approvals decreased. There was an increase of 9% in applications considered during 2016 to 2017 compared with last year, from 11,460 to 12,455, with a similar proportion completed. However, the conversion rate of completed applications to approvals decreased from 57% to 49%.

The report warned that children with at least one unplanned ending of their placement were more likely to have persistent school absence.

“Thirteen percent of children who experienced at least one unplanned ending had persistent school absence in comparison with 5% of children with no unplanned endings. The rate of persistent school absence increased to 19% for children who experienced at least one unplanned ending and at least one educational placement change,” the report concluded.

Fostering in England 2016 to 2017: main findings

Knowledge & Resources

Keep abreast of the latest news in the children's services sector.

ParentAssess and founder Sarah Lowe nominated for three awards

14/09/2022

ParentAssess founder Sarah Lowe’s outstanding contribution to social work has been recognised as she and the specialist parenting framework she established have been nominated for not one but three awards.

Sarah Lowe, founder ParentAssess

ParentAssess has been nominated for Innovation of the Year in the Family Law Awards and Executive Learning Disability and Autism Award in [...]

Read Full Story

Financial pressure is greatest challenge facing families

05/09/2022

The most common challenge for families is worries about financial pressures and the rise in the cost of living, a Family Review by the children’s commissioner for England has found.

Children's commissioner for England Dame Rachel de Souza

The Family Review, which is based on research from a Literature Review, a Call for Evidence, commissioned surveys [...]

Read Full Story

School staff need help tackling child mental health as anxiety among students rises

01/09/2022

Teachers are seeing increasing levels of anxiety and a rise in mental health problems among their students but lack the training and time to support young people.

Eighty two per cent of teachers are seeing anxious pupils and the worsening of existing mental health problems, compared to just one year ago, according to a survey [...]

Read Full Story
Children First is an online resource for professionals working with children presented by WillisPalmer, providing you with the latest news, features and interviews.
Subscribe Today

A Mackman Group collaboration - market research by Mackman Research | website design by Mackman

linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram