Young Carers in Schools

Building, sharing and recognising young carers support in schools

Young Carers in Schools is an innovative programme which works with teachers and school professionals across England to meet the needs of young carers while they are at school. 

This national programme of training and accreditation is run jointly by The Children’s Society, Carers Trust and Young Carers in Focus partners. The initiative is funded by the Big Lottery Fund and The Queen’s Trust.

Young carers are a vulnerable and disadvantaged group who often experience difficulties in education and therefore do not achieve their potential. If unidentified and unsupported, their caring roles can seriously affect their future wellbeing, life chances and levels of aspiration.

Become an Early Implementation Site (EIS)

Schools are vital and ideally positioned to play a collaborative role in identifying young carers and initiating support for young carers and their families.

We are currently inviting applications from Local Authorities, Carers Services, School Clusters and Academy Chains to become early implementation sites for this work.

Over the next year the Young Carers in Schools programme will be working with 15 successful EIS to roll out regional networks, develop tools and guidance and support schools in the areas to gain recognition of the support they provide through Young Carers in Schools Awards.

The closing date is the 17th June 2014 with selections being made in the week following this.

If you are unable to be an EIS you can also get involved by registering  to access training and expertise through regional networks, termly newsletters and a framework of additional guidance, tools and resources (both to be launched in September 2014)

Background

The national Young Carers’ Schools Award is an award which has been developed with and by young carers, and tested within a number of pilot schools to ensure that it meets the needs of young people. It is designed to offer every school an equitable chance of achieving a national award that showcases that you are achieving.

Young Carers in Schools programme equips schools to build support via a framework of guidance, resources and training; share knowledge through expert regional networks and gain recognition through the Schools Award, showcasing that the Young Carers’ Standard has been met.

Schools applying for the award may receive a bronze, silver or gold certificate and online badge - designed by young carers - depending on the policies and level of support they have in place to support these vulnerable pupils.

Launch and pilot phases

This spring we celebrated the progress of our initial pilot programme and presented two schools with exciting new awards. The awards were chose by a panel of young carer champions, part of Young Carers in Focus, who evaluated each school’s application and made the final award.

This spring also marked the launch of the early implementation sites, where 20 new districts in England were invited to apply for the Young Carers in Schools award.

The development of the early implementation sites will also be the foundations of the development of supporting tools, resources and regional networks of expertise.

Following the awards for early implementation sites, the framework and award will be launched nationally this autumn.

Further information

The Children’s Society, Carers Trust and Young Carers in Focus (a collaboration of Rethink Mental Illness, YMCA Fairthorne Group, Digital Me and The Fatherhood Institute) have joined forces to run a national programme to equip schools to support young carers and award effective practice.

Young Carers in Focus is funded by the Big Lottery and led by The Children’s Society in partnership with Rethink Mental Illness, YMCA Fairthorne Group, Digital Me and The Fatherhood Institute. It also hosts a safe national social network for young carers via Makewaves: www.makewav.es/ycif

Carers Trust is funded by The Queen’s Trust to achieve greater and more consistent identification and support for young carers in schools across England and improve access to qualified one to one support through www.youngcarers.net.

Read more

• Join in – sign up your school or project for a 'site' in the YCiF network
• Find out more about our work with young carers and Hidden from View
• Find out more about Carers Trust
• Find out more about YCiF partners (Rethink Mental Illness, YMCA Fairthorne Group, Digital Me, The Fatherhood Institute)

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YCiF School Standard logos