Regional networks are central to the work of the National Network for the Education of Care Leavers. Regional groups meet 3-4 times per year to share knowledge and good practice as well as identify opportunities to work collaboratively.
The aim of the National Network for the Education of Care Leavers is to support the regional networks, and to develop new groups where they don’t exist.
Central Region for the National Network for the Education of Care Leavers
The Central region was set up in 2015 by the Study Higher partnership, which was an existing collaboration between Bucks New University, Oxford Brookes University and University of Oxford and University of Reading. The group meets every 4 months and consists of those who work within student support teams and widening participation teams at the universities, and representatives from the regions local authorities who work directly with care experienced young people.
- Milton Keynes
- West Berkshire
- Bracknell Forest
Trudy Ing, Widening Participation Project Manager, Oxford Brookes University
Bucks New Uni, Oxford Brookes University, University of Oxford, University of Reading, Study Higher, Bracknell Forest Council, Buckinghamshire County Council, Milton Keynes Council, Oxfordshire County Council, Reading Borough Council, Swindon Borough Council, West Berkshire Council, Wokingham Borough Council.
Eastern Region Universities Group
Formed in January 2012, a group of likeminded institutions came together united by the belief that children and young people in and leaving care faced a number of challenges in life, particularly regarding their educational opportunities. The group therefore made a commitment to support the progression of care leavers into higher education and to work in collaboration to help overcome some of the obstacles faced by looked after children and young people.
From an original membership of six institutions, the group has now expanded to eight, including two additional members so that HE providers from East Anglia are also represented. The Eastern Region have held two regional conferences, have facilitated collaboration between institutions to develop resources, deliver outreach events, taster days, summer schools and practitioner training sessions, as well as providing regular opportunities to share best practice. Making use of the collective skills and expertise of member institutions, we have been able to supplement our work as individual institutions to reach more young people than could ever be achieved alone.
The Eastern Region Universities Group have also started building stronger relationships with local authorities including attending meetings with Virtual Schools to raise awareness of the work that local universities are engaged with and the opportunities available. We are currently looking to expand the membership of the group to include local authority representation from across the Eastern Region to facilitate a more regular dialogue with all stakeholders across the region.
Liz Ferguson, University of East Anglia - firstname.lastname@example.org
Anglia Ruskin University, Buckinghamshire New University, University of Bedfordshire, University of Cambridge, University Campus Sussex, University of Essex, University of Hertfordshire, University of East Anglia.
EMCLASS (East Midlands Care Leavers Activities & Student Support)
Founded 2008 for professionals working in Higher Education Institutions in the East Midlands and adjoining regions who work with young people in care, care leavers and care professionals to support outreach, transition and support of care experienced students. Recently expanded to include professionals providing support for young people estranged from their families.
Membership includes professionals from the areas of outreach, student support services and admissions.
- South Yorkshire
Attendees: De Montfort University, University of Derby, University of Keele, University of Leicester, Loughborough University, University of Nottingham, Nottingham Trent University, University of Northampton, University of Sheffield, Sheffield Hallam university.
Melissa Page, HE Guidance Officer, De Montfort University email@example.com
NorthCLASS was established in February 2010 with members from 11 institutions and has since expanded to include 29 HEIs and 10 FE colleges making it the largest regional collaboration covering the whole of Yorkshire & Humber, North West and North East.
NorthCLASS provides a forum for strategic partnership between Higher Education providers in the North of England. It consists of a network of representatives from universities and colleges whose roles include supporting care leavers or coordinating activities for young people in care, whether they be based in Student recruitment, widening participation nor student support. Meeting quarterly, the group works closely with Local Authorities, and other organisations to share best practice, discuss pertinent issues, enhance progression, promote the support available to care leavers and provide valuable CPD for attendees. It works closely with National Network for Education of Care Leavers (NNECL), as one of our members is Co-chair.
If you would like to join NorthCLASS email P.Bakstad@ljmu.ac.uk
- East Riding of Yorkshire
- Greater Manchester
- North Yorkshire
- South Yorkshire
- Tyne & Wear
- West Yorkshire
- North West: Jamie Bytheway, GM Higher Manager (Projects), Greater Manchester Higher J.Bytheway@mmu.ac.uk
- North East: Wendy Price, Access to Higher Education & Scholarships Manager, University of Sunderland, Wendy.firstname.lastname@example.org
- Yorkshire & Humber: Ruth Lomas, Schools and Colleges Liaison Officer, University of Huddlesfield, R.Lomas@hud.ac.uk
Askham Bryan College, Blackburn College, Bradford College, Blackpool and The Fylde College, Leeds City College, Myerscough College, New College Durham, South Cheshire College, Stockport College, Wakefield College, UCLAN, University of Bolton, University of Bradford, University of Chester, University of Cumbria, University of Durham, Edge Hill University, University of Huddersfield, University of Hull, Lancaster University, Leeds Beckett University, Leeds College of Art, University of Leeds, Leeds Trinity University College, University of Liverpool, Manchester Metropolitan, Liverpool Hope University, The Liverpool Institute for Performing Arts, Liverpool John Moores University, University of Manchester, Newcastle University, Northumbria University, University of Salford, University of Sheffield, Sheffield Hallam University, Teeside University, University of Sunderland, University of York, York St. John University
South East Network for the Education of Care Leavers (SE NECL)
The SE NECL was established in 2013 in order to develop a strong regional group to help shape and support the agenda of NNECL. The group agreed to work to four overarching objectives:
- The sharing of information that is of use to young people and their advisors, including information on summer schools, bursaries and useful national support. This would include the dissemination of information from the national NNECL committee and also a commitment to ensure that such things were communicated at a local level.
- The sharing of resources where appropriate, for example by using the regional meeting for practitioner workshops for. It was also agreed that the group could benefit from the sharing of the best practices in each of the local groups, including the sharing of data and the development of practitioner training and, particularly, the management of young people at times of transition.
- Addressing cross-county issues, including the sharing of information and support, in a collaborative environment.
- The communication of concerns to the national NNECL committee. There was a view that the national committee’s role was strategic and that it should serve regional and local groups through lobbying on appropriate issues.
- Hampshire & Isle of Wight
Anne-Marie Bird, Events Lead, Widening Participation, University of Sussex A.Bird@sussex.ac.uk
Felicity Dunworth, Director, Kent & Medway Progression Federation email@example.com
Kent & Medway Progression Federation, Care Leaver Progression Partnership, Brighton, Hove and Sussex Sixth Form College, University of Brighton, University for Creative Arts, University of Greenwich, University of Portsmouth, University of Surrey, University of Sussex, University of Winchester, Virtual School Kent.
South West Universities Group
The South West Universities group meets on a regular basis to share information and good practice on localised provision for children in care and care leavers across the region. The group also provides a link to provision on a national level through NNECL, as well as with the South West Virtual Heads Network, which enables good communication between practitioners across the region.
Natalie Bracher, Outreach and Success Officer, University of Exeter - N.Bracher@exeter.ac.uk
Arts University Bournemouth, Bath Spa University, Bournemouth University, Plymouth University, University of Bath, University of Bristol, University of Exeter, University of Gloucestershire, University of West England.
West Midlands Care Leaver Network (WMCLN)
The West Midlands region was established in 2011 and includes members from HEIs in the West Midlands who work in outreach, transition and the support of care leavers and Looked After Children.
The WMCLN offers a forum for sharing best practice and support for HEIs as well as providing Care Leavers and Looked After Children with a central resource and easy access to HE support.
Baljit Gill, Outreach Officer (Experience Warwick, Looked After Children & Care Leavers) B.Gill.firstname.lastname@example.org
Aston University, University of Birmingham, Birmingham City University, Coventry University, Higher Horizons, University of Keele, Keel Hub, Staffordshire University, University of Warwick, University of Wolverhampton, University of Worcester, Rees Foundation, West Midlands Virtual Head Teachers Network.