The promises

Before the survey, the government target was for half of care children to get at least one GCSE by 2001. In 2000, the Government launched the "Education Protects"initiative, promising a better deal for those in care.

It set new targets including 15 per cent of 16-year-olds in care to get five Cs or better at GCSE by 2004.

In 2002, the Government promised to "substantially" narrow the gap between the attainment of those in care their peers by 2006. Targets included:

* raising the achievement of 11-year-olds in care to at least 60 per cent of that of their peers

* ensuring no more than 10 per cent reach 16 without having sat a GCSE or equivalent

* raising the percentage who get five Cs or better at GCSE by 4 points each year and ensuring at least 15 per cent reach this level in every council.

In 2004, the Government recognised the difficulties faced by children who regularly move home and school by aiming to increase the proportion who stay in the same place by 80 per cent.

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