What is a Virtual School?

Don't worry, a virtual school is not a real school- we won't give you homework or ask you to sit any tests or exams

A Virtual school is an education support service for children and young people in care. We work with the adults around you, including your parents, carers, social workers and teachers to ensure that you are supported in your education.

Your wellbeing and education are important to us, we want to help you achieve the most you can and to feel the happiest possible. This involves working with your schools or colleges to make sure you have the support you need.

 

The Virtual School Team  

Our virtual school key workers, mentors and tutorsmay work directly with you as well as the adults around you

Emily works with children aged 2-5

Bethan works with children in years 1,2,3 & 4

Emma works with children in years 5,6 & 7 and will support children moving  from primary to secondary school 

Shane, Veronica & Leanne work with young people in years 7,8,9,10 & 11 

Kirsten works with young people in years 12 & 13 

Hannah provides careers advice to young people aged 14-19 and helps young people moving into an apprenticeship and university 

Leanne works with children who have an Education Health & Care Plan 

Maxine & Karen are our tutors who support children in primary school 

 

Personal Education Plans (PEPs)

Personal Education Plans are an important document outlining your educational progress. 

A Meeting takes place each term, attended by your Parents/carers, teachers and social workers to discuss how you are doing in school. At the meeting, information is shared about your achievements and targets are put in place to help maintain or improve your educational experience.

We encourage you to share your own views and opinions on how you feel, including things that are going well for you and things that could be improved. You can either attend the PEP meeting or complete the PEP questionnaire.  

 

Designated Teachers 

All schools must have a designated teacher for looked after and previously looked after children who is responsible for making sure you get the best possible education. Your designated teacher will attend your PEP meeting and is responsible for making sure pupil premium funding is used to enhance your education 

 

Enrichment Opportunities 

Like your own school, we want to provide you with as many opportunities as possible. we arrange trips, events and programmes to support this and also occasionally send books and gifts to your home. Some of the activities, trips and programmes we offer are:

A Book in a Bag

if you are in primary school you will receive a termly 'book in a Bag' which contains a book and resources related to the book. Each year group will receive a different book each term. Some of the books we sent out last year were: The Pirate Craft Book, which included a small treasure chest and card to make your own pirate mask. 'Operation Gadgetman', which included a secret decoding and fingerprint kit and 'How to Make a Comic', which included the beano book and a set of pens to help design your own comic 

Magazines 

If you are in years 1 to 5  you will receive a monthly edition of Storytime Magazine and a large pack of resources to go with each episode.

If you are in years 6-9 you will receive a weekly copy of First News and access to the First News website to take part in activities and competitions 

If you are in year 10 or 11 you will be able to sign up for a free one-year subscription to a magazine of your choice.

Online learning programmes

You all have access to our online learning programmes Doodlemaths, reading eggs and Mathletics. All programmes are designed to help you with your maths and English.

Corporate Mentoring Scheme  

If you are in years 9 to 13 you could access a council senior manager as a mentor. Mentors provide support, advice and guidance to any young people who are considering moving onto an apprenticeship within the local authority or who would like more information on what it is like to work for the council. 

Trips 

We arrange regular theatre trips for you to watch a variety of plays and performances.

If you are in year 6 you might be invited to the Year 6 Transition weekend residential, where you stay in a lodge and complete activities to help you with the move to secondary school 

Programmes

Young people in secondary school may be able to access our A2U programme. We work with Wolverhampton University and other Virtual Schools to support young people to go onto university. We do this by showing you what life at university is like and delivering a number of activities each term connected to the university.

Summit 2 Success 
If you are in year 7 or 8 you may be asked to join our Summit2Success programme which has a focus on build resilience and self-esteem and working with others to overcome barriers

Council4Kids 

You may also be asked to join our Children in Care Council. A group of children and young people who meet to discuss ways to improve the support provided to children in care 

 

Pupil Premium Funding 

Pupil Premium is money given to the Virtual School to help improve your education. The funding can be used for all sorts of things, such as extra 1:1 tuition, Enrichment activities, ICT or learning equipment and resources to help with your learning. Your parents/carers, social worker and teachers will request pupil premium funding at your PEP meetings

 

 

If you want to know more about our activities ask your parent/carer or social worker to contact us or contact us yourself at walsallvirtualschool@walsall.gov.uk 

 

 

 

 

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