Foster Children and School Performance
At Perpetual Fostering, we find the following question being posed to us time and time again: “what can I do to help a child’s performance at school?”
Our answer is: plenty, because you can never be too conscientious when it comes to boosting a foster child’s quality of life. The first priority comes back to what we’ve covered before: reinforce your time with the child as a season of stability. This is a cornerstone of providing a truly quality placement.
Getting this right is a huge step toward arming them with confidence: it’s vital that they approach school at ease with their entire situation. Conversely, if they approach school with any trepidation or doubt about how long they’ll be there, they’re less likely to engage with their learning or take their education seriously.
The second priority is setting your intent: one of the most powerful ways to do this to get all the details of everyday life right. This is just important as an achievement, and reinforces the quality care we strive for as an agency. The following are key:
1) Nourish Them Properly
The importance of proper sustenance cannot be underestimated for growing children. Vary the types of foods eaten each day, whilst ensuring that required levels of protein, fibre and carbohydrates are met.
2) Healthy Mind, Body and Soul
Seems obvious, but keeping all of the above in tip-top condition is an ongoing effort.
An active, healthy body feeds into a high-performing mind: physical activity can improve cognitive function – and academic performance!
3) Routine and Discipline
This is about enforcing guidelines and boundaries – and working towards setting some positive habits. Make it clear that homework and learning are key to their success, and that their future is not defined by what has happened in the past. These points reinforce an important life lesson: that no-one is successful, or does themselves justice, without hard work, dedication and discipline.
Create a stimulating learning environment for them at home. Inspire and stimulate their curiosity in the world with all manner of books, learning materials, and educational posters. Give them the gift of knowledge – that they should never stop learning or being interested in the world around them.
For any persistent, bigger questions, we also have a virtual head, who provides advice and support to our carers. As an example, this could be as simple as what to do when a child refuses to their homework. This supporting figure offers drop-in sessions on a monthly basis to help talk foster parents through these kinds of issues. They also monitor the child’s academic performance, to ensure the child achieves their full potential.
What about you? How do you go about helping a foster child with their school performance? Any and all advice is encouraged from our readers – get in touch with us today to share your strategies!