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Family Information and Services Hub

Children in Care (Looked after Children)

A child who is being looked after the local authority is known as a child in care (CIC) or a looked after child (LAC).

They might be living:

• with foster parents

• at home with their parents under the supervision of social services

• in residential children's homes

Care Plans

All looked after children should have a Care Plan (or detention placement plan).

This sets out how the Local Authority will need the child’s care needs including health, education, emotional and behavioural development, identity, family and social relationships, social presentation and self-care skills.

The Care Plan will include a Personal Education Plan (PEP) and a Health Plan.

Personal Education Plan (PEP)

Some looked after children will have a statement of special educational needs (SEN) or an EHCP (Education, Health and Care Plan). Where this is the case, the PEP should include relevant information from the statement/EHCP and annual reviews of the statement/EHCP but does not need to duplicate the information in full.

The PEP is the statutory document. Hampshire has different versions of the PEP specific to each key stage of school and whether or not the child has a Statement or EHC Plan.

More information and templates can be found on Hampshire County Council's website

Health Plan

A child’s Health Plan should be reviewed regularly with an assessment. As this assessment includes sections on developmental progress it will also cover some of the same topics as an Education Health and Care (EHC) needs assessment and/or Plan.


Hampshire Virtual School

Every local authority has a Virtual School for children in care.

The main job of the Virtual School is to make sure that children in care receive the best possible, education, achieve well and get the most out of their experience of school. It’s virtual because children in care attend a number of schools all over Hampshire and other parts of the country and some may not currently be in school at all. The school is overseen by a virtual school head (VSH) teacher appointed by the local authority.

The VSH’s role is to:

• know how the looked-after children are doing

• help school staff and social workers to find out about the extra needs of these children and any additional support available to them

• work with the children’s services department of the local authority and with all schools in the area on initiatives to promote the education of children in care.

• manage the funding for looked-after children (school-age pupil premium and early years pupil premium) and allocate it to schools and non-mainstream settings.


If a looked after child lives with foster carers or in a children’s home, they may attend a school in a different local authority to the local authority that looks after them. In this case the local authority in which a child is normally resident is responsible for administration and management of the statement / EHC plan or an EHCP assessment if required. However the local authority that looks after the child is financially responsible.


Looked after children are one of the groups of pupils that attract pupil premium funding and early years pupil premium.

Local authorities receive a pupil premium grant allocation based on the number of children looked after for at least one day and aged 4 to 15.

The early years pupil premium (EYPP) gives providers of early years education extra funding to support disadvantaged 3- and 4-year-olds. This is additional funding provided to help improve the attainment of looked after children and close the attainment gap between this group and their peers.

Find out more information on the rights, respect and responsibility (RRR) initiative and pupil premium funding please see the external link on the right.

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