Tue, 07 Feb 2023

Publication of 'Northern Ireland Care Leavers 2021/22'

Northern Ireland Executive
19 Jan 2023, 22 GMT+10

The Department of Health today published a statistical bulletin summarising information on care leavers aged 16-18 in Northern Ireland and care leavers whose 19th birthday occurred during the year ending 31 March 2022.

Care leavers aged 16-18

  • There were 320 care leavers aged 16-18 in 2021/22.
  • Some two thirds (65%) of care leavers aged 16-18 had GCSEs or other qualifications. The proportion of care leavers who had 5 GCSEs (A*-C) or higher at the time of leaving care was 33%.

  • Care leavers continue to have a higher proportion of young people with a Statement of Educational Need (23%) compared with the general school population (5%).

  • Of the care leavers aged 16-18 in 2021/22, for whom information was available, 75% were in full time or part time education, training or employment. Some 14% were unemployed and 11% were economically inactive because of caring responsibilities or illness/disabilities.

Care leavers aged 19

  • There were 225 care leavers aged 19 in 2021/22.
  • Some 90% of care leavers aged 19 were in contact with Health and Social Care Trusts; with 65% in contact at least once a month.
  • Some 79% received some form of ongoing support from social services, including support for higher education and accommodation.
  • Of the care leavers for whom information was available,75% were in education, training or employment - a slight decrease from the previous year.
  • In terms of becoming a parent, 13% of all care leavers aged 19 were parents, 18 young women and 8 young men.

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