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Supporting Young Carers in School – Wales

Designed with teachers and schools staff, this resource helps make the identification and support of young carers in schools in primary and secondary schools in Wales as easy as possible.
Area of Care: 
Mental HealthPhysical illnessAlcohol MisuseSubstance MisuseSpecial education needs
Outcomes: 
PreventionWellbeingIntegrationHealth inequalitiesCarer awarenessIdentifying carers
I work in: 
Health careCarers servicesSocial careEducationCommissioning
I work with: 
Young adult carersYoung carersSibling carers
Caring for: 
AdultsOlder adultsYoung peopleChildren
Location: 
Wales
Date Revised: 
Wednesday, August 30, 2017 - 09:45
Main Image: 
Body: 

Young Carers in Schools Wales

Welcome to Supporting Young Carers in Schools: A Step-by-step Guide for Leaders, Teachers and Non-teaching Staff, Wales edition.This resource has been written in association with teachers and school staff to help make the identification and support of young carers in schools as easy as possible. 

It forms part of the Young Carers in Schools programme, a free England and Wales wide initiative making it as easy as possible for schools to support young carers and awarding good practice. 

Together with the programme's free tools and resources, the Step-by-step Guide will help schools achieve National Young Carer recognition.

Who is the Step-by-step Guide for?

The Step-by-step Guide is for use in secondary and primary schools in Wales but could be easily adapted for use in the rest of the UK.

Schools are well situated to support young carers and, working in partnership with other agencies, to impact positively on their lives and their education. This toolkit provides an invaluable resource to help identify and support young carers in schools across Wales, and I urge schools to take advantage of it.

Kirsty Williams,
Cabinet Secretary for Education, Welsh Government

What does the Step-by-step Guide offer your school?

Many schools are delivering exceptional practice, making a real and positive difference to the young carers they support. Other schools have told us they want to achieve these excellent outcomes, but don't know where to begin. This Step-by-step Guide sets out ten key steps to implementing effective identification and support for young carers in schools.

Like other aspects of school life, the development of effective support for young carers is reliant on regular reviews of current provision and the identification of areas for continual improvement.  The steps are therefore a cyclical process, which schools should engage with throughout the school year.

Why take part?

The Young Carers in Schools programme enables schools to:

  • Gain national recognition for raising outcomes for young carers through the Young Carers in Schools Wales programme.
  • Demonstrate to Estyn that your school is meeting the needs of young carers, specifically mentioned in the Inspection Guidance, 2016.
  • Identify manageable steps to improve educational outcomes for this vulnerable pupil group – the programme breaks down the actions schools can take so that your school can prioritise what to do next.
     

What schools have told us about the impact of the prgramme

The outcomes from implementing the Young Carers in Schools programme in England have shown some impressive  results not least in  increasing young carers confidence, wellbeing, achievement and attainment. Pilot schools in Wales so far have seen a significant increase in the number of young carers identified since being the programme.

Making it as easy as possible for schools to support young carers

The Step-by-step Guide has been developed with teachers and school staff who understand the pressures that schools face to deliver the very wide range of demands placed upon them.  As a result it is designed to be as flexible and helpful as possible.

Each step is accompanied by key information and practical tools, which schools can use and adapt to suit their school structure and local circumstances. All accompanying tools will be uploaded in the coming weeks but schools can make a start by completing the baseline review

Not all schools will need to use all the tools included.  Some may find it more helpful to choose those that will help enhance the support they already offer to young carers and their families while others will want to simply start and build their activities over a number of years. 


How can your school get involved?

  • Download the Step by Step guide (below) and have a take a look at the accompanying tools (related content below)
  • Complete a Filebaseline reviewFileadolygiad o'r man cychwyn (Step 2, Tool 1) of your schools current provision for young carers to indentify strengths, weaknesses and priorities.
  • Agree actions to be taken forward with your Senior Leadership Team.
  • Contact your local authority, health board and young carers service to share your findings and see how they can support the programme.
  • Complete a pledge on the interactive Schools Map –  either in support of the Young Carers in School programme or as part of your own young carers work.
  • You can blog, help raise awareness through Young Carers Awareness Day and encourage other schools to take part in the programme through your Cluster leads.
  • Send us your contact details so we can help promote your work.

Identifying early means an improvement in achievement, attainment and wellbeing, if the right support is offered.

Phase 1

Since July 2016  Carers Trust Wales has been working with 8 pilot schools from across Wales to refine and adapt the young carers in schools programme.  The outcome of this pilot has seen huge investment of time and commitment resulting in some very clear wins for not only the schools but young carers themselves.  By working together with Estyn and Welsh Government we hope to further raise the profile of young carers within the education system to ensure their voices are heard.

Phase 2

We are extremely keen to continue and develop this work further. Carers Trust Wales are currently seeking funding to support Phase 2 which would involve the roll out of a National Peer Review system to help encourage and support schools to achieve better and more sustainable outcomes for young carers.  If you are interested and would like to know more please do get in touch. EoI welcomed  from October 2017.

Got a question about the Young Carers in Schools Wales programme?

Email: Gill Winter, Carers Partnership Manager, Carers Trust Wales.

 

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PDF icon Step by Step Guide WalesPDF icon Canllawiau Cam wrth gam Cymru
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Anti Bullying Resource – Being Me

Bullying can be a big issue for young carers and can have a major impact on their self-confidence and self-esteem. "Being Me" will equip teachers to work with pupils to tackle bullying in a fresh way.
Outcomes: 
PreventionWellbeing
I work in: 
Education
I work with: 
Young carers
Location: 
Whole UK
Date Revised: 
Tuesday, November 25, 2014 - 13:45
Body: 

Being Me resource pictureCarers Trust has teamed up with national anti-bullying charity Kidscape, as well as Diversity Role Models, Potential Plus UK and The National Autistic Society - charities representing children who are at the end of an unacceptable level of bullying in Britain's schools today, to develop Being Me.

Better understanding

Being Me is a series of resources designed to give children across the UK an insight into the life of their classmate, and a better understanding of what it is like to be them.

Originally designed for National Anti-Bullying Week's drive to stop bullying and to celebrate difference, this new unique school resource includes a specific section on young carers. 

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PDF icon Being me - supporting young carers in your class
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Widening access to learning (Wales)

The Open University Wales have produced materials and resources, running information and taster sessions in supporting carers to take their first and next steps in higher education.
Outcomes: 
WellbeingCarers in employment
I work in: 
EmploymentEducation
I work with: 
Adult carersYoung adult carers
Location: 
Wales
Date Revised: 
Tuesday, November 25, 2014 - 11:00
Main Image: 
Student carrying books
Body: 

Carers are one of the priority groups for widening access to learning. In partnership with Carers Trust Wales and our network of carers centres, The Open University Wales have produced some great materials and resources, running information and taster sessions in supporting carers to take their first and next steps in higher education.

Supporting carers

The report Extending opportunities for carers evaluates The Open University in Wales work with carers from 2010-2013. It offers insights into supporting carers to access and succeed in higher and further education, and demonstrates that flexible learning opportunities – such as provided by the Open University – are essential for carers whose lives are busy, unpredictable and often stressful.

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The role of school nurses in supporting young carers

School nurses play an important role in identifying school aged young carers both in and out of education. Public health nurses can play an important role in identifying and supporting families where there may be a child or young person caring or who could become a carer.
Area of Care: 
Physical illnessPrimary Care
Outcomes: 
PreventionWellbeingHealth inequalitiesCarer awarenessIdentifying carers
I work in: 
Health carePrimary careHealth and wellbeingEducation
I work with: 
Young carers
Location: 
Whole UK
Date Revised: 
Thursday, October 23, 2014 - 10:00
Main Image: 
Nurse
Body: 

The school nurse can play a key role in identifying young carers at an early stage, protecting their health and wellbeing and ensuring that they and their families are linked into and receiving further support from other services that they may need.

Supported by Carers Trust, several of its Network Partners and young adult carers involved in the Time to Be Heard campaign, the Department of Health have developed several strands of work for young carers:

Supporting the health and wellbeing of young carers

The Pathway Supporting the health and wellbeing of young carers is designed to support integrated working between the school nursing service, other public health nurses and partners in supporting young carers and their families. It sets out the rationale for effective partnership working recognising the need to offer support within a school and community context.

The pathway provides a model for a coordinated approach between school nursing, education, local authorities and young carers’ services, to ensure early identification of health and wellbeing needs and the provision of primary healthcare services to young carers and their families.

Young Carer School Nurse Champions

To complement the Pathway, school nurses across England are being trained to become Young Carer School Nurse Champions to give them a strong understanding of the pressures young carers face and how to ensure they receive the care they need.

On completion of the training, school nurses receive the Champion badge which will clearly identify to young carers those school nurses who have undergone training. To strengthen their role, a PDF iconSchool nurse champions charter has also been developed that sets out key messages and specific roles of a School Nurse Champion.

Work is also underway with the Department of Health to link up young carers’ services with their local school nurse.

School nurses community

Visit the Royal College of Nursing's School nurses' community website, that includes information about young carers in schools and "Meet the School Nurse Carer Champions".

Royal College of Nursing online learning resource

RCN Learning has a resource which aims to help school nurses and their teams to support young carers. It may also be of interest to children’s community nurses and health visitors.

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PDF icon School Nurse Champions Charter
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