Statistical press release - Publication of ‘Northern Ireland Care Leavers 2014/15’

Date published: 14 January 2016

The Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety today published a statistical bulletin summarising information on care leavers in Northern Ireland who left care during the year ending 31 March 2015.

Care Leavers

Care Leavers Aged 16–18

Key findings indicate care leavers aged 16-18 continue to have a higher proportion of young people coping with disability (15%) than the general population (6%), and in terms of education, higher proportions of care leavers had a Statement of Educational Need (14%) compared with the general school population (5%).

Three quarters of care leavers had GCSEs or other qualifications. However, the proportion of care leavers obtaining 5 GCSE’s (A*-C) or higher was 25% which remains much lower than for school leavers as a whole (79%). The proportion of young people leaving care with no qualifications was 26% in 2014/15.

Of care leavers for whom information was available, three in five (61%) were in education or training, 8% were working and 31% were unemployed or economically inactive.

Care Leavers Aged 19

Some 68% of care leavers aged 19 were in contact with Health and Social Care Trusts at least once a month.

In terms of becoming a parent, 16% of all care leavers aged 19 were parents, with 26% of female care leavers aged 19 becoming mothers on or before their 19th birthday.

Of the care leavers for whom information was available, 66% were in education, training or employment, a small increase from 2013/14 (64%). This was higher than 19 year old care leavers in England, where 59% were in education, training or employment, and in Wales (55%).

Notes to editors: 

1. All publications are available on line

2. About the data:

  • the source of the data contained in this release is the Departmental OC1 and OC3 statistical returns, collected from HSC Trusts on an annual basis
  • figures incorporate all returns and amendments received from HSC Trusts up to 31st December 2015

3.      This statistical bulletin was produced by Community Information Branch, DHSSPS.

Further information is available from:

Community Information Branch
Department of Health, Social Services and Public Safety
Room 11, Annexe 2
Castle Buildings

Tel:      (028) 90 522580
Fax:    (028) 90 523288

4. Media queries to DHSSPS Information Office on 02890 520074, or out of hours contact the Duty Press Officer via pager number 076 9971 5440 and your call will be returned. Follow us on Twitter @healthdpt

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