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Posted on 27 June 2011

Orkney MSP and Scottish Liberal Democrat Education spokesman Liam McArthur MSP has said that Scottish Ministers must review what is being done to support looked after children, in light of figures that show they are still not getting a fair start in life.

Statistics released today by the Scottish Government show that school exclusions rates are much higher for looked after children, who also fare considerably worse according to a range of other outcome measures.
Commenting Liam McArthur said:
“These figures make for alarming reading. While the Cabinet Secretary has indicated his intention to step up efforts in early years support, there can be little doubt now about the scale of the task ahead if we are to improve the life chances of looked after children in Scotland.
“Today's report lays bare the extent to which looked after children are being left behind, making it much more difficult for them later in life.
“Scottish Liberal Democrats want to see looked after children mentored and supported throughout their whole school lives, equipping them with the skills to improve their lives.
“This early action is the only way of enhancing self-confidence and other life skills. In turn, this will help improve job prospects and reduce the likelihood of individuals turning to crime and anti-social behaviour, with the waste and misery this represents.
“Scottish Ministers claim that this is a priority over the next five years and that they will be setting out the detail of their plans in the coming weeks. This is welcome but Ministers will be judged on their record.”
Posted on 27 June 2011
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