Virtual School

Our duty to promote the educational achievement of children in care, with a social worker and previously looked after children

The Virtual School fulfils statutory and non-statutory duties on behalf of the Local Authority. The Virtual School Headteacher (VSH) leads the work of the Virtual School and promotes the educational achievement of certain groups of children. This includes:

  • Children In Our Care (CIOC)
  • Previously Looked After Children (PLAC)
  • Children with a Social Worker (CWSW) 

We provide support, advice and training for professionals. We also undertake some direct work with children and young people. 

The Virtual School Headteacher (VSH) also leads the work of our Virtual College to support young people leaving care particularly around their education, employment and training opportunities.

Children in our Care

For Children In Care to Blackburn with Darwen, we are their corporate parent. This means that we are the educational advocate that parents are for other children.

Previously Looked After Children

For Previously Looked After Children who live and attend school in Blackburn with Darwen, our role is different. We are a source of advice and information to professionals, and also help their parents or guardians to advocate for them around their education.

Children with a Social Worker

For children with a Blackburn with Darwen social worker, we champion their education. This is to help everyone hold high aspirations for this group of children.


If you would like advice, support or guidance, email us on