Academic Year 2018/19

Outcomes of children in need, including looked after children

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This statistical release and underlying data provide national level information on the educational outcomes and characteristics of children in need (CIN), including looked after children. 

The following data is available:

  • Rates of Special Educational Needs (SEN) and Free School Meals (FSM)
  • Types of school attended
  • Attainment in Early Years, Key Stage 1, Key Stage 2 and Key Stage 4
  • Absence and exclusion rates

This release illustrates some of the proposed changes to the annual ‘Outcomes for children looked after by LAs’ National Statistics release’ and outcomes within the ‘Characteristics of children in need’ National Statistics. Improving these statistics was a commitment made at the end of the Children in Need (CIN) review. The proposed changes aim to improve the consistency of definitions and the range of children reported on. For example, the annual statistics don’t currently report outcomes on the whole CIN cohort and only report on children looked after for at least twelve months at 31 March, whereas this release includes the outcomes of all CIN, including breakdowns for those on child protection plans and those looked after for less than 12 months at 31 March. We are asking users for their feedback on these proposals, please see here if you wish to participate.

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Headline facts and figures - 2018/19

  • Over a third of all children in need in Key Stage 2 achieved the expected level in reading, writing and maths (35%). Pupils who had been continuously looked after for at least 12 months achieved higher than this average (37%), but lower than the average for all pupils (65%).
  • The average Attainment 8 score for all children in need in Key Stage 4 was 18.5, compared to 46.7 for all pupils. Pupils who had been continuously looked after for at least 12 months had a similar average Attainment 8 score of 18.7, but have better Progress 8 scores than the average child in need (-1.27 compared to -1.49).
  • Over a quarter of all children in need were persistently absent (29%). A smaller proportion of those who had been continuously looked after for at least 12 months were persistently absent (11%), the same as the rate for all pupils (11%).
  • Children who had been continuously looked after for at least 12 months had a lower rate of permanent exclusions (0.05%) than the average for all children in need (0.58%), and the average for all pupils (0.10%).
  • One in ten of all pupils in 2019 have been in need in the previous 6 years. Compared to all pupils, these children are less likely do well at each stage of education, more likely to have SEN or FSM, and more likely to be persistently absent.

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