Travel to School

nunny
Posts: 14
Joined: Wed Aug 22, 2012 3:29 pm

Travel to School

Postby nunny » Thu Jan 24, 2013 2:43 pm

I am fostering my three grandchildren and are at present leaving the house at 8 o clock every school morning returning home at around 9.30 then going back to collect them at 2 o clock returning at around 4.pm. The eldest child is taking his SATS in April so it was advisable to keep him at the same school which is why I am having to do all the travelling and because I have to take him the two girls have to stay at the same school also. This obviously has implications that the three children are not able to forge friendships in their new placement away from school. I do understand how important SATS are but this travelling is taking up 15 hours of my week when it could be put to better use. The school situation was going to be discussed at a PEP meeting last week but the decision had already been decided before the meeting took place. I feel so like a taxi especially with the weather being so bad I could not get the children to school last Friday or Monday because we were snowed in. I have asked about the possibility of a taxi and was told the pots empty. Prior to the children coming to me they were took to school by taxi I know this is not an ideal situation but time management is not a concern for the carer. Has anyone any views on this subject.

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Robin D
Posts: 1848
Joined: Sat Aug 21, 2004 12:58 pm

Re: Travel to School

Postby Robin D » Fri Jan 25, 2013 10:19 am

First point is I hope the local authority are paying you the costs. If not then complain.

As for SATS, they are more important for the school than the child. We withdrew ours on medical grounds as he could not handle the stress.

If you are fostering them, then you might get a more helpful reply from http://www.fostering.net/ who will have dealt with this sort of issue many times in the past I'm sure.

Robin
Former F&F carer, foster carer, adopter and respite carer for umpteen children. Now retired and when with kids, making sure they 'go home' at the end of the day.

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David Roth
Posts: 2022
Joined: Thu Aug 10, 2006 10:14 am

Re: Travel to School

Postby David Roth » Mon Jan 28, 2013 10:15 am

Are you fostering the children under Interim Care Orders or full Care Orders?

If they are interim orders, then the case is still going on, and the decision hasn't been made yet whether the care orders should be made. If this is the case, then there would still be a possibility that the children would return to their parents, and it would be understandable to say that the children should not change school in case they get to go back to parents and then have to change back to their previous school again. The aim would be that the children should change schools the fewest times possible.

However, if the children are under full care orders, then the court has decided that they should not go home again to parents. In that case, if the plan is for the children to stay with you, then it would make sense for them to go to a school near to home, which is with you.

Do you have any connections with your own local schools? It could be worth inquiring whether any of them could take the children in, and in particular whether any could deal with your grandson switching to them to take his SATS there. As looked after children, they should be priorities for places in any state schools, although schools will still sometimes say that they don't have any spaces available, and avoid taking in looked after children that way.

Any change of school does need to be agreed with the local authority, which is his corporate parent, but if you could do a bit of research about what local schools could offer then that might reassure them. Any change of school place would usually take place at a term break, such as the half-term or Easter holidays - you would need to discuss that with the schools as well.
David Roth
FRG Policy Adviser

nunny
Posts: 14
Joined: Wed Aug 22, 2012 3:29 pm

Re: Travel to School

Postby nunny » Mon Jan 28, 2013 10:32 am

Hi David

Thank you for your reply. Yes the children are under full Care Orders.

I have looked around the schools and there is places for the children but the Social Workers are not prepared to let them move yet. the earliest they will look to move the children is May. I feel like they have dumped me with the travelling to save costs. I also feel it is in the childrens best interests to go to their local school in order to make friends with children in their community. I know I have to do as I am told but do feel let down. The fifteen hours travelling time is time I should be spending with my daughter who is at home. I leave the house at eight and don`t see her. Sorry to moan.


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