The Department for Education has allocated the first year of additional funding for Staying Put provision to local authorities in England, with further information on the subsequent two years of funding due to be released in February 2015.
The opportunity for young people to stay put with their foster carers until the age of 21 came into law in early 2014 following The Fostering Network’s successful Don’t Move Me campaign.
The funding allocation is for local authorities expenditure incurred, or to be incurred, to enable a young person aged 18 and their former foster carer to continue to live together in a ‘Staying Put’ arrangement, as set out in the Children and Families Act 2014 which came into force earlier this year.
Robert Tapsfield, chief executive of The Fostering Network, said: “The allocation of this money will give local authorities the opportunity to put into place the plans that they have already developed and to offer the certainty to young people that they need.
“The funding allocated to local authorities is based on local councils reaching the levels of uptake that were achieved when similar arrangements were initially piloted. Our hope though, is that more young people choose to stay on – although that would make this current allocation of funds inadequate.
“Children’s minister in England, Edward Timpson MP, has suggested that, should there be a higher uptake, he is prepared to ask for further funds in the next spending review. However, it is the responsibility of local authorities to show that the money is not enough, and our concern is that if they do not bring in the changes that are needed, then that case will not be made.
“Staying put is a tremendous opportunity for young people to be supported into adulthood and this money can ensure that provision can be met, and ultimately show young people in the future that staying put can be truly beneficial to them.”
You can find details of your local authority’s allocation of funds on the Government website.
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