NAVSH and the new duties

Following the announcement in July 2021 that the role of Virtual Schools within local authorities will be further extended from September 2021. Local authorities will receive funding to resource Virtual School Heads to work with schools, colleges and social care leaders to create a culture of high aspirations that helps all children with social workers to make educational progress.

NAVSH and ADCS have been involved in the progression of this work to assist their members in undertaking those duties.

The key aims of the duties are to:

  • make visible the disadvantages that children with a social worker can experience, enhancing partnerships between education settings and local authorities to help all agencies hold high aspirations for these children.
  • promote practice that supports children’s engagement in education, recognising that attending an education setting can be an important factor in helping to keep children safe from harm.
  • level up children’s outcomes and narrow the attainment gap so every child can reach their potential. This will include helping to make sure that children with a social worker benefit from support to recover from the impact of COVID-19.

Key activities that will be critical to the success of the Virtual School Head role include;

  • enhancing partnerships between education settings and the local authority so agencies can work together.
  • identifying the needs of the cohort and addressing barriers to poor educational outcomes and ensure pupils make educational progress.
  • offering advice and support to key professionals to help children make progress, including through increasing their confidence in using evidence-based interventions

NAVSH has a series of training and support webinars focused on the new duties and welcome ADCS members to access these resources in order to facilitate the work of Virtual Schools.   Full details can be found on the NAVSH website.