Responding to a report by the Centre for Excellence for Looked After Children in Scotland (CELCIS) which challenges the suggestion that fewer than one in 15 children who have spent time in care goes on to higher education, Sara Lurie, director of The Fostering Network in Scotland, said: ‘This report is very welcome as it explores the education of care experienced young people in more detail and helps challenge some of the misperceptions and stigma surrounding these young people.
‘We have long known what this report reiterates - that the stability of relationships in care is fundamental to improving outcomes for looked after children and that fostering is a protective factor for many young people. Foster carers are playing an increasingly important role in supporting young people to fulfil their potential, including encouraging them to consider further or higher education as an option.
‘Of course, more still needs to be done to continue raising the aspirations and achievements of care experienced young people, including ensuring that more support is offered to those from this group who go into further or higher education. We would strongly encourage all care experienced people to tick the care experienced box on their UCAS form when applying for university, allowing them to benefit from additional support and resources. We would also call on the Scottish Government to ensure that its Continuing Care initiative is sufficiently well funded to allow young people who go to university to come back to their former foster home in the holidays.’