Supporting Children in Care

All parents want their children to have the best start in life and to reach their full potential. Sandwell Council has corporate parenting responsibility for looked after children and, like all parents, valuing and supporting children's education is one of the most important contributions the council can make to their lives.

The Sandwell Virtual School has high aspirations for looked after children and ensure that children and young people are given every opportunity to access the best education, giving them the chance to achieve their potential.

What is the Virtual School?

The Virtual School provides access to a multidisciplinary team through strong links with the many individuals, teams, schools and agencies that are involved in supporting the education of children in care. The Virtual School also provides advice and guidance to previously looked after children and young people and all children with a social worker.

The team consists of a head teacher, Operations Manager, two Advisory Teachers, nine Education Officers, an Office Manager and Administrator.

The service is managed by Children’s Services and Education. 

Who is the Virtual School For?

The Virtual School provides advice, guidance and support to children in care to Sandwell Council and wherever they are placed.

The Virtual School does not replace the school or educational provision of a looked after child - it is an additional resource which exists to support and challenge all those involved in the education of children in care.

The Virtual School is involved in or promotes various initiatives to support the educational achievement of children in care. These include:

  • Out of school clubs and activities
  • The Boarding School Pathfinder Programme
  • Pupil Premium funded initiatives
  • Training and advice for schools, council staff and carers.

Did you know?

  • There are approximately 800 children in the care of Sandwell Council (April 2023);
  • Approximately 70% of these children are of school age and attend schools in and around Sandwell;
  • Approximately 100 children, who are in the care of other local authorities, also attend Sandwell schools.

Contact us

The Sandwell Virtual School
The Hollies STEPS Centre
Coopers Lane
B67 7DW

Telephone: 0121 569 2770

Visit the Lace website