South Craven School has been given a Bronze award for their work in making sure students don’t miss out on an education because they are Young Carers.
The Young Carers in Schools programme helps primary and secondary schools improve outcomes for Young Carers and celebrates good practice through the Young Carers in Schools Award.
Lesley Jackson, South Craven School’s Young Carers Coordinator said: “Nothing makes me prouder than for us to be recognised for our efforts in making sure our Young Carers get the support and help they need in school. Our Young Carers never seem to amaze me with their courage and resilience. I feel honoured to work with them whilst they go above and beyond, caring for a family member whilst juggling their studies. They are a credit to themselves and our school.”
A Young Carer at the school said: “Young Carers form time in school is a place where I can just be me. It helps with my mental health and I can relate to other students. It makes me feel like I’m not alone and helps me focus in school.”
Young Carers are responsible for emotional, practical or physical care for a parent, sibling or other family member who has a physical disability, mental health issue or substance misuse issue. The 2011 Census statistics revealed that there are just over 166,000 Young Carers in England, but research reveals that this is just the tip of the iceberg, and the true figure could be closer to 800,000 Young Carers in England.
The Young Carers in Schools programme offers a step-by-step guide for leaders, teachers and non-teaching staff, with practical tools designed to make it as easy as possible for schools. To achieve their Bronze Award, South Craven School demonstrated that it supports Young Carers in many ways, including homework clubs and drop-in sessions with a member of staff who is responsible for this vulnerable group of pupils.
Giles Meyer, Chief Executive of Carers Trust, said: “Schools play a vital role in a Young Carer’s life, as many care for relatives without their teachers even knowing what they do. On average Young Carers will miss a day of school each month as a result of their caring role, so the steps schools take to identify and support them can have a huge impact on their learning, wellbeing and life chances.”
Helen Leadbitter, National Young Carers lead at The Children’s Society, is delighted that the Young Carers in Schools Programme is bringing about national change. “74% of schools who have achieved a Young Carers in Schools Award have noticed improved attendance amongst their Young Carers, and 94% have noticed improvements in their wellbeing and confidence.”
For more information on how South Craven supports Young Carers in school, please click here.