Department of Education

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Leon Feinstein, Director of the Rees Centre, was delighted to invite the independent care review (ICR) team to a virtual meeting at the Rees Centre on Tuesday 23 March, to provide an opportunity to present our research on what is known about what’s working and what’s not working in children’s social care. Click on the links below to view the slides from this meeting and a further presentation for the ICR, by Prof Julie Selwyn, given at Coram Voice, titled The subjective well-being of children in care and care leavers.

Bright Spots Care review presentation

REES Centre presentation to ICR 1.5

We are pleased to announce the appointment of Professor Leon Feinstein to the role of Director of the Rees Centre.  He will take up this post from 18 January 2021.

Lisa Holmes has taken on the role of Deputy Director of Research within the Department of Education, creating the vacancy for Director of the Rees Centre. Lisa will continue to play a key role in the Rees Centre leading major research projects and will continue to be part of the senior management team.

Leon Feinstein

Leon joined the department in October 2019 as Professor of Education and Children’s Social Care working in the Rees Centre having had previous roles as Director of Evidence at the Children’s Commissioner’s Office and at the Early Intervention Foundation. Before that he worked in the civil service for a decade bringing the best evidence and insight to support policy making across social policy issues.

Leon said “I am delighted and honoured to take on the role of Director of the Rees Centre. The Centre is a leading organisation in research about those who are, or have been supported by children’s social care. This is a field of policy and practice that faces tremendous challenges but also has great reservoirs of skill and talent. I hope to draw on what I have learnt in other roles to work with some wonderful colleagues to bring the best evidence and knowledge to support families, practitioners and policy makers. Lisa is a tough act to follow and I am delighted she will continue in the Centre, offering stability, leadership and insight.” Lisa added/said “This is an exciting change for me personally and for the Rees Centre. I look forward to continuing to work with Leon to develop collaborative research opportunities. I am also looking forward to the new challenges and opportunities associated with the role of Deputy Director of Research in the wider Department.”

Congratulations to researchers from the department’s Rees Centre for Research in Fostering and Education who have been Highly Commended for Excellence in Impact in the inaugural O2RB Excellence in Impact Awards for their work on The Educational Progress of Looked After Children in England – the first major study in England to explore the relationship between educational outcomes, young people’s care histories and individual characteristics.

The awards were announced on Thursday 19 April in a ceremony at St Anne’s College, Oxford, under the categories of Excellence in Impact, Impact Champion and Early Career Impact Champion.

The former Director of the centre, Professor Judy Sebba, received the award on behalf of the project team, which included, Professor David Berridge, Professor Steve Strand, Professor Sally Thomas, Dr Nikki Luke, Dr John Fletcher, Dr Karen Bell, Professor Ian Sinclair and Aoife O’Higgins.

The O2RB Excellence in Impact Awards are an opportunity for members of the University of Oxford, the Open University, Oxford Brookes and Reading Universities (O2RB) to come together to recognise and reward the successes of social sciences researchers who have achieved, or are currently achieving, excellent economic and societal impacts. Find out more here.

Photo credit- John Cairns