Personal Education Plans (PEPs)
All looked-after children must have a care plan, of which the PEP is an integral part. The PEP (pre-school to age 18) should be initiated as part of the care plan. It is an evolving record of what needs to happen for looked-after children to enable them to make at least expected progress and fulfil their potential. The PEP should reflect the importance of a personalised approach to learning that meets the child's identified educational needs, raises aspirations and builds life chances. The school, other professionals and the child's carers should use the PEP to support achieving those things.
A PEP is a single working document about the child or young person's education. It includes information such as what the young person wants to do at school and what sort of targets they would like to reach. It also gives the opportunity for a young person to say what he or she is finding tough, as it's really important that all adults involved in providing education and care are aware of any problems and can plan ahead to address them. It is developed and reviewed with all key stakeholders reflecting a working partnership and a shared understanding of what needs to happen to help the child achieve his or her potential.
A copy of the PEP must be held both at the school and within the local authority database. Once the PEP is written it is regularly reviewed at a PEP meeting that happens at least every 6 months. At this meeting the social worker, designated teacher and carers will want to know about how school is going and what support they can provide to enable the young person to be able to plan for the future. They will then set targets to help and support.
The PEP should cover the full range of education and development needs including:
- Access to a nursery or other high quality early years provision that is appropriate to the child's age (e.g. pre-school playgroups) and meets their identified developmental needs
- on-going catch-up support for those who have fallen behind with school work (including use of effective intervention strategies)
- provision of immediate suitable education where a child is not in school (e.g. because of temporary or permanent exclusion)
- transition support where needed, such as when a child starts attending a new school or returns to school (e.g. moving from pre-school / early years to primary school, primary to secondary school, from secondary school to further education, or following illness or exclusion) or when a child has a plan for permanence (e.g. placed for adoption) and may change schools as part of that plan
- school attendance and, where appropriate, behaviour support
- Support needed to help the child realise their short and long-term academic achievements and aspirations
A PEP is needed:
- Before or when a child/young person is received into care (Care Planning Regulations – within 10 days) , ready for the first care review (Initial PEP)
- when there is a change in school (within 20 days)
- when there is a change in placement
- for any concerns – called a PEP review
- To be reviewed at least termly
Arranging and attending a PEP
It is the Social Worker's responsibility to invite people to the initial PEP meeting, subsequently the DT will take the lead responsibility for ensuring the PEP meeting happens and the paperwork is complete. Invitations to a PEP meeting will be sent out as far in advance as possible and no less than 2 weeks before the meeting. Invitees must include:
- Designated Teacher (other school staff should be consulted and included by the Designated Teacher as appropriate)
- parent/family member (if appropriate)
- child or young person
- social worker
- personal advisor if in Year 11, or 12,13 if required
- other key stakeholder who has an impact or is closely involved with the child or young person’s education (e.g. Educational Psychologist, CAMHS worker, health representative, SEN representative)
It is very important that the child’s Social Worker is present at the meeting. If an emergency arises to prevent their attendance a substitute from their team should be sought to represent them or it may be appropriate to reschedule the meeting.