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About the Virtual school

Who are we

The Virtual School is a small, joint agency, countywide team of specialist staff from education and social care set up in 2001 to improve the educational achievement and experience of Buckinghamshire’s children in care.  

Since September 2021, following the child in need review, the government made a commitment to extend this duty to all children with a social worker (for more information see: new duty for children with a social worker).

Our roles:

Leadership:

Emma Owen - Virtual School Head Teacher- has statutory responsibility for overseeing outcomes for all looked after children and previously looked after children.

Vicky Carrick-Lynch - Assistant Head – strategic lead for all children with a social worker.

Primary and Early years

Tess Hancock – Early years lead - supports children in care in the Early Years and Foundation Stage by monitoring their progress and outcomes through the PEP process, ensuring effective use of pupil premium in schools. 

Sally Rose – Liaison Teacher - supports children in care in Key Stage 1 and 2 and transition to secondary school by monitoring their progress and outcomes through the PEP process, ensuring effective use of pupil premium in schools. 

Gail Frazer - Liaison Teacher - supports children in care in Key Stage 1 and 2  and transition to secondary school by monitoring their progress and outcomes through the PEP process, ensuring effective use of pupil premium in schools. 

Secondary and Post 16

Amy Abbot – Liaison Teacher - supports children in care from key stage 3 upwards by monitoring their progress and outcomes through the PEP process, ensuring effective use of pupil premium in schools.  Also supports the strategic lead with the extended duty to all children with a social worker.

Ed Frewin – Liaison Teacher - supports children in care from key stage 3 upwards by monitoring their progress and outcomes through the PEP process, ensuring effective use of pupil premium in schools. 

Claire Davis – Liaison Teacher - supports children in care from key stage 3 upwards by monitoring their progress and outcomes through the PEP process, ensuring effective use of pupil premium in schools. 

Ian Wright – Liaison Officer - supports children in care in Key Stage 3, 4 and 5 by monitoring their progress and outcomes through the PEP process, ensuring effective use of pupil premium in schools. 

Christine Elsbury –Inclusion Manager - supports children new to care organising initial PEP meetings and / or arranging school placements where required.  Makes links with the residential children’s homes and Fostering Panel.

Sara Dagdelen –  Post 16 Officer - supports young people in care who are in post 16 education, training, or employment or who have become NEET.  Also responsible for leading on careers and supports the education and orientation for Unaccompanied Asylum Seekers Children.

Children with complex and profound needs:

Joanna Rush - Liaison Teacher - supports children in care of all key stages including those with complex and profound learning difficulties by monitoring their progress and outcomes through the PEP process, ensuring effective use of pupil premium in schools. 

Jenny Stuart – Teacher - supports children in care with complex and profound learning difficulties by monitoring their progress and outcomes through the PEP process, ensuring effective use of pupil premium in schools. 

Previously looked after children, support roles (pastoral and academic):

Maria Seth - Post Order Education Support- advises schools on supporting previously looked after children and those with special guardianship arrangements. Also supports the strategic lead with the extended duty to all children with a social worker.

Lucy Kanachowski – Maths Teacher - supports children in care to achieve their potential via one-to-one Maths tuition.  Tuition is delivered face to face or virtually to boost confidence and support preparation for external exams.

Silvana Grella - English Teacher - supports children in care to achieve their potential via one-to-one English tuition.  Tuition is delivered face to face or virtually to boost confidence and support preparation for external exams.

Joanna Thwaite – Participation Officer - supports children in care to achieve their potential through bespoke pastoral support and mentoring.  Also responsible for supporting Unaccompanied Asylum Seeker Children to access the local community and an introductory ESOL programme.

Trevor Johns - Participation Officer - supports children in care to achieve their potential through bespoke pastoral support and mentoring via sports and other extracurricular activities. 

Denise CheethamVirtual School Literacy and Book Parcels co-ordinatorsupports children in care to achieve their potential through literacy by supplying them with access to books tailored to their interests.

Business support:

Susan Pennington – Office manager– supports in all aspects of the day to day running of The Virtual School, in particular the management of office tasks and the co-ordination of PEPs.  First point of contact Monday to Friday.

Miranda Frost - Virtual School Administrator – supports day to day office tasks and phone calls.  Oversees the maintenance and running of The Virtual School classroom.

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