Adoption support in Scotland
Looked after children have the same rights to extra support in school as other children. All children who are looked after are automatically assumed to have additional support needs – unless they’re assessed and it’s decided they don’t have additional support needs at that time.
However, they may still need extra support later to cope with disruptions or upset caused by leaving a foster family, moving home or changing school. The child’s local authority must consider whether a looked after child needs a coordinated support plan.
Education, social work and staff from other agencies should work together to assess and plan the support a looked after child needs. Local authorities should have detailed policies in place on the education of looked after children to makes sure this happens. The child should be involved in planning their support and have a say in decisions about what they will learn at school and the support they need.
If a child is looked after, their home authority has responsibility for their education even if they are:
- placed in accommodation in another local authority and attending a school in that authority
- placed in a school in another local authority, for example, because school provision that meets their needs is available there.
Support for two year old children
Some two-year-olds – including those who are looked after –are entitled to 600 hours a year of early learning and childcare.
Looked after children up to the age of three
Your local authority should also provide additional support for two-year-old looked after children receiving their funded hours of early learning and childcare
Your local authority must identify whether your child has additional support needs and give them the appropriate support if they:
- attend or are registered with a school run by your authority
- receive education in another local authority school under arrangements made by your own authority
- have been placed at an independent special school or grant-aided school by your authority.
Your local authority must provide your child with ‘adequate and efficient’ additional support so that they can benefit fully from their education. The term ‘adequate and efficient’ is taken from the Education (Scotland) Act 1980. The Act focuses on individual provision directed at every child.
Find out more – The parents’ guide to additional support for learning, Enquire