Publication - Statistics

Education outcomes for looked after children 2017-2018

Published: 18 Jun 2019
Directorate:
Learning Directorate
Part of:
Children and families, Education, Statistics
ISBN:
9781787818941

Information on attainment, destinations of school leavers and achievement of curriculum for excellence levels for looked after children in Scotland.

37 page PDF

835.4 kB

37 page PDF

835.4 kB

Contents
Education outcomes for looked after children 2017-2018
Post-school destinations

37 page PDF

835.4 kB

Post-school destinations

  • Looked after school leavers are less likely to go in to positive destinations than school leavers in general, especially higher education
  • The percentage of looked after leavers in positive initial destinations has increased since last year

This section presents data on the destinations of the estimated 999 young people who were looked after during the period 1 August 2017 to 31 July 2018 and who left school during 2017/18. Information is collected on the destination of school leavers in the September after they leave school (initial destination) and again the following March (follow-up destination). School leavers who are engaged in higher education, further education, training, voluntary work, employment or an Activity Agreement[1] are classified as having a 'positive destination'. Other destinations include school leavers who are unemployed and individuals where their destination is not known.   For more information on school leaver destination categories, see background note 4.8.

Initial destinations

A lower proportion of looked after children enter positive destinations than all school leavers, but this gap has narrowed since 2012/13. The lower proportion of looked after children going into positive destinations is likely to be related to looked after young people tending to leave school at an earlier stage to all pupils. Young people looked after for part of the year are less likely than those looked after for the full year to enter a positive destination after leaving school (Table 2.1). While an estimated 83% of young people looked after for the full year went on to a positive destination after leaving school, three quarters (74%) of those looked after for part of the year did. This compares with 94% of all 2017/18 school leavers (Table 2.1).

Among young people looked after for the full year, 49% were either in Higher or Further Education 3 months after leaving school. For those looked after for part of the year, this figure was 36%. In comparison, more than two thirds (68%) of all school leavers were in Further or Higher Education (Table 2.1). The lower proportion of looked after young people entering Higher Education can largely be explained by leaving school at an earlier stage and consequent lower levels of qualifications.

Table 2.1: Percentage of school leavers by initial destination (3 months after leaving school), for all school leavers and those who were looked after children, 2017/18(1)(4)

Looked after leavers – full year Looked after leavers – part year All school leavers
Higher Education 4 5 41
Further Education 45 31 27
Training 9 9 2
Employment 15 16 23
Voluntary Work 2 2 1
Activity Agreement 9 10 1
Unemployed Seeking 11 17 4
Unemployed Not Seeking 5 9 1
Unknown 1 1 0
% in a positive destination(2,3) 83 74 94

(1) Cells containing * represent small numbers that have been suppressed to maintain confidentiality. All figures were revised in 2014/15, so these figures should not be compared with previously-published figures.

(2) Due to the effects of rounding some totals will not equal the sum of their parts.

(3) Positive destinations includes higher education, further education, training, voluntary work, employment and activity agreements.

(4) Looked after children data is estimated by using 2016/17 figures for Glasgow City and 2017/18 figures for all other local authorities. All school leavers data is not affected.

Follow-up destinations

The rate of positive destinations among looked after school leavers at the time
of the follow-up (9 months after leaving school) has improved over the past five years. For children looked after for the full year, this has increased from 69% in 2012/13 to 76% in 2017/18. For children looked after for part of the year, the percentage in positive destinations has increased from 55% to 69% over the same period (Chart 3). 

Chart 3: Looked after children in positive follow up destinations, 2009/10 to 2017/18(1)

Chart 3: Looked after children in positive follow up destinations, 2009/10 to 2017/18

(1) Looked after children data for 2017/18 is estimated by using 2016/17 figures for Glasgow City and 2017/18 figures for all other local authorities. All school leavers data is not affected.

The positive destination is more likely to be sustained after nine months for all school leavers rather than for looked after leavers. Around three quarters (76%) of school leavers looked after for the full year were in a positive follow up destination, down from 83% in a positive initial destination. For school leavers looked after for part of the year these figures were 69% and 74% respectively. The reduction is also present for all school leavers, but to a lesser extent (93% in a positive follow up destination, down from 94% in positive initial destinations).

Table 2.2: Percentage of school leavers by follow-up destination (9 months after leaving school), for all school leavers and those who were looked after children, 2017/18(1)(4)

Looked after leavers – full year Looked after leavers – part year All school leavers
Higher Education 4 4 39
Further Education 38 26 23
Training 10 7 2
Employment 18 22 28
Voluntary Work 1 1 1
Activity Agreement 5 9 1
Unemployed Seeking 14 17 4
Unemployed Not Seeking 7 12 2
Unknown 3 3 1
% in a positive destination(2,3) 76 69 93

(1) Cells containing * represent small numbers that have been suppressed to maintain confidentiality. All figures were revised in 2014/15, so these figures should not be compared with previously-published figures.

(2) Due to the effects of rounding some totals will not equal the sum of their parts.

(3) Positive destinations includes higher education, further education, training, voluntary work, employment and activity agreements.

(4) Looked after children data is estimated by using 2016/17 figures for Glasgow City and 2017/18 figures for all other local authorities. All school leavers data is not affected.

Initial and follow-up destinations by type of accommodation

Table 2.3 shows the percentage of looked after school leavers in positive initial and follow-up destinations by placement type. For school leavers looked after for the full year, those in foster care placements had the highest proportion in positive initial and follow-up destinations. Young people in residential accommodation and those looked after at home had the lowest proportion in positive destinations. 

For young people looked after for part of the year, those in a voluntary home, with friends and relatives and with foster carers had the highest proportion in a positive initial destination. There was a higher proportion of young people in a community placement other than at home with parents in a positive follow-up destination than those looked after in residential accommodation or with more than one placement.

For those looked after for the full year, the largest decreases at follow-up are seen in those young people in other residential accommodation and those looked after at home with parents. For those looked after for part of the year the largest decrease is seen in school leavers who were with foster carers purchased by the local authority and those in a voluntary home.

Table 2.3: Positive initial and follow-up destinations among looked after school leavers, by placement type, 2017/18(1)(2)(5)

Looked after for the full year Looked after for part of the year
Type of accommodation In a positive destination after three months In a positive destination after nine months In a positive destination after three months In a positive destination after nine months
In the community (children with one placement)
    At home with parents 67 59 70 64
    With friends or relatives 86 82 84 74
    With foster carers provided by LA 96 89 84 89
    With foster carers purchased by LA 92 92 81 69
    In other community(3) * * - -
Residential Accommodation (children with one placement)
    In local authority home 69 63 59 65
    In voluntary home * * 86 43
    In other residential(4) 76 55 75 67
More than one placement 78 71 59 59
Scotland 83 76 74 69

(1) Some children who were included in the initial destination survey could not be contacted at the time of the follow up destination survey. This is why the total number of children in each survey differs.

(2) Cells containing * represent small numbers that have been suppressed to maintain confidentiality.

(3) Includes with prospective adopters.

(4) Includes in residential school, in secure care accommodation, and crisis care.

(5) Data is estimated by using 2016/17 figures for Glasgow City and 2017/18 figures for all other local authorities.


Contact

Email: william.howes@gov.scot