AP Specialist Taskforce

LEAP: AP Specialist Taskforce

LEAP has been asked by the Department for Education to participate in the Alternative Provision Specialist Taskforce programme, which aims to provide intensive multi-agency support to vulnerable children and young people in Alternative Provision (AP) most at risk of disengaging with education, being criminally exploited by gangs and becoming involved in county lines and knife crime.

Last summer as lock down eased, we saw a spike in serious youth violence which was the highest on record and we know pupils in AP can be particularly at threat from serious violence, gangs or criminal exploitation either as a victim or a perpetrator.

The programme is fully funded and will pilot the impact of co-locating a variety of specialist workforces in an AP school on a full-time basis. These specialists will be drawn from across health, education, social care, youth services and youth justice and they will deliver targeted, wraparound support to pupils in AP to reduce truancy, not in education, employment, and training (NEET) rates, the risk of involvement in serious violence and improve mental health and wellbeing.

This particular programme aims to deliver significantly improved outcomes for children and young people in Alternative Provisions and LEAP is part of a group of alternative provision schools which provide leadership and expertise across the whole school system to incentivise early support and to ensure stable and high-quality provision for those children and young people most at risk of disengaging from education.

It is also clear that the vast majority of pupils in AP have special educational needs and disabilities (SEND), particularly social, emotional, and mental health (SEMH), and that AP is increasingly operating as part of the SEND system. The DfE will also carefully look at how we can work together to improve outcomes in AP as part of the ongoing SEND Review.

LEAP has been chosen as one of 21 AP schools across the country to take part in this strand of development work – our continued commitment to reducing the numbers of our pupils being perpetrators or victims (often both) of youth violence is reflected in the ongoing work we do with a huge range of specialists in our therapeutic Inclusion team:

Educational Psychologists, CAMHS Therapists, Speech and Language Therapists, Parenting Support workers, Academic Intervention Teachers, Counsellors, Youth Support Workers, the Youth Offending Team, Victim Support and more.

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