In October 2021 EAP was identified by the Department for Education as one of the 22 Alternative Provision schools across the country to participate in the Alternative Provision Specialist Taskforce (APST) programme, that aimed to provide intensive multi-agency support to vulnerable children and young people in Alternative Provision (AP) most at risk of disengaging with education, being criminally exploited by gangs and becoming involved in county lines and knife crime.
The programme originally fully funded by the DfE was to pilot the impact of co-locating a variety of specialist workforces in an AP school on a full-time basis. It was originally a two-year project which has been extended until March 2025.
EAP’s specialist taskforce was set up in partnership with London Borough of Ealing, and coordinated by an experienced project lead within the Integrated Youth Service linking particularly with the Ealing Youth Justice Service and Social Care teams. (MAST Adolescence & SAFE Team).
The team is currently made up of the AP Coordinator & Youth Justice Lead, Family & Pupil Liaison Worker, Counsellor, Speech & Language Therapist and Post 16 Careers Mentor.
These specialists are co-located on site at EAP and work to deliver targeted, wraparound support to pupils on roll to reduce truancy, not in education, employment, and training (NEET) rates, the risk of involvement in serious violence and improve mental health and wellbeing. All of which provides additional support to the existing EAP key worker support team working together to improve outcomes for students and their families.
To date, many of our youngsters and their families have benefitted from the immediate referral to agencies that they might not have otherwise accessed and EAP has enjoyed a mutually beneficial relationship with the other APs in the project and from the extensive DfE support team.