24/09/2015NNECL Conference, 4th December 2015

Please save the date for the third NNECL (National Network for the Education of Care Leavers) conference, held this time in central London.

Venue: London Metropolitan University

The NNECL conference will again bring sectors together to unite staff striving to champion the educational success of care experienced students.

Post Buttle UK Quality Mark, the NNECL conference will aid forward momentum by sharing best practice across agencies. This conference is for colleagues from further and higher education, local authorities and virtual schools, national charities and other groups.

The National Network for the Education of Care Leavers (NNECL) was established in June 2013 by higher education institutions and national organisations committed to the progression and support of Care Leavers in higher education. Working together NNECL aims to transform the progression of young people in or leaving care into and through further and higher education, by championing the continuous improvement of local practice, multi-agency partnerships and national collaboration.

Headline details of the inspirational speakers and workshops on offer are below, with more detailed information to follow.

Delegates are invited to take part in the AGM immediately after the close of conference (3.30pm), to contribute their vote in shaping ongoing development of NNECL’s mission and key aims.

There will be a small charge of £25 made to delegates to cover the venue and catering costs.

Booking details to follow. 

The NNECL NNCO website ( launch will be taking place in London on the evening before the conference (3rd December).  The NNECL NNCO website will provide a coherent, single point of contact for professionals working with children in care and care leavers to find out about relevant outreach and resources delivered by HE across the country to improve educational progression and attainment for care leavers.  The project is funded through the HEFCE National Networks for Collaborative Outreach.

Further details to follow.

Those who express interest in either event will be subscribed to the quarterly NNECL e-newsletter, unless they decline this. Anyone wishing to be added to the newsletter now, please visit:


9.30 to 10am: Refreshments and Registration (include Regional Networks Corner)

10.00am: Housekeeping, NNECL Chair welcome

10.15am: Key note Speaker  *TO BE CONFIRMED*                   

10.45am: Workshops (See list of workshop options options below)

12.00am: Lunch and networking (include Regional Networks Corner)

12.45pm: Panel discussion – graduate care leavers discuss leaving university and moving in to the world of work. What can universities do to help?

1.15pm: Workshops

2.30pm: Break

2.45pm: Key note speaker: 'Trauma, Attachment and their Effects on the Education of Looked-after Children', Professor David Shemmings OBE PhD, Professor of Child Protection Research, University of Kent

3.10pm: Rachel Lad introduces NNECL NNCO website

3.20pm: Closing remarks

3.30pm: AGM to take place after close of conference

Key Note Speakers:

'Trauma, Attachment and their Effects on the Education of Looked-after Children' 

During this session Professor David Shemmings OBE PhD will refer to some of the latest research into the neurochemistry of the brain to show that trauma should not be seen as an irreversible process. In the contrary, many children and young people with very troubled and troubling childhood histories make astonishing recoveries, given what happened to them ... How is this possible and how do it happen? This short session attempts to unravel the key messages from the research to leave practitioners and carers with some simple yet effective 'take home' messages to help and support young people.

Professor David Shemmings OBE PhD

Professor of Child Protection Research

Co-Director of the Centre for Child Protection Director of the Attachment and Relationship-Based Practice Project Visiting Professor of Child Protection Research, Royal Holloway, University of London

NNECL Conference Workshops:

(Not yet confirmed in italics)

  1. Improving the knowledge and support of Care Leavers in Higher education: Using Care Leaver statistics to improve outreach and pre-enrolment support Carla Cordner & Carrie Wilson, Care Leavers Association
  2. Access HE LAC Strand (London based): Sharing best practice on a whole student lifecycle approach / best practice initiatives
  3. Engaging foster carers in supporting young people’s educational aspirations: Best practice from London Fostering Achievement, Lisa Belletty Fostering Network
  4. Institute of Recovery from Childhood Trauma
  5. The Leicestershire Attachment Aware Schools Project: structure and progress Sally-Ann Harding: Virtual School Head Teacher, Leicestershire County Council
  6. Coram – Access to higher education for migrant care leavers, including the recent Supreme Court decision
  7. How can we support children in residential care to have a good experience of education - a case study by The Mulberry Bush, Dave Roberts
  8. The Who Cares? Trust: Care Leavers Panel
  9. Emotion Coaching, Will Calver, University of Greenwich
  10. Student Loans Company