Biker is a rocking foster dad

12th May 2006 at 01:00
Get your motor runnin', head out on the highway - but be sure to wrap up warmly, and eat a good dinner before you go.

These are the rules of child-rearing, according to David Quick, 36, a leather-clad, tattooed and pierced biker, who has been named the ideal foster carer by children's charity NCH.

"People see the leather jacket and motorbike and think, 'Here comes trouble,'" he said. "But I'm teetotal. I don't smoke. I swim six miles a week. There's no right or wrong model for foster parents. Once people spend time with me, they realise that behind the leather jacket is a caring person."

Mr Quick and Tracey, his wife, have fostered five children and have two sons of their own: 11-year-old Ieuan and three-year-old Dafydd.

"We wanted to give a good life to lots of children," Mr Quick said.

"There's a real satisfaction in seeing a child come to you partially broken, and move on a whole person. I'm like a big kid playing with my bike. I'm showing them it's OK to play."

The TES Time to Care manifesto, launched today, calls on the Government and local authorities to ensure children in care get the support most of their classmates take for granted. It calls for better pay and training for foster carers, the right to private tuition for teenagers before their GCSEs, and additional resources for schools which admit looked-after children.

There are wide variations between the exam results of children in the care of different local authorities. Those in the best authorities are five times more likely to gain qualifications than those in the worst.

Time to care, news 16-17

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