Resources To Support Children Arriving From Ukraine
This information is provided solely for reference to help schools and colleges. Resources included are not endorsed, promoted, recommended or connected to the Department for Education in any legally binding way.
Explaining the education system
Refugee Education UK has published a welcome booklet to tell parents and guardians about the education system in England so they can help their children or young people access and be prepared for school or college. The first section of this booklet is aimed at parents. The rest of the booklet is for children – to welcome them and tell them what school is like in England. We recommend parents read these sections with their children. There are also some pictures to colour in.
Further information and support for young people arriving from Ukraine can be found at Education Welcome Project – Information for students from Ukraine.
Resources for further education students can be found at Refugee Education UK.
The Bell Foundation has translated materials explaining the education system and also produced a number of resources to welcome refugee learners.
Learning English as an additional language
There is a range of English language learning options and resources available to children, young people and adults arriving from Ukraine.
English language learning resources include:
- Oxford International Education Group offers two free English language courses to displaced people and those fleeing the war in Ukraine taught through the OI Digital Institute:
- English for culture
- English for business
- Open University – OpenLearn platform can be adapted to offer tailored, free support, and there is a dedicated hub aimed at refugees
- ILT Education Polylino’s HelpUkraine campaign gives families with children who arrive in the UK seeking refuge an opportunity to access their multilingual book platform for free
Other resources to support international arrivals into UK schools and colleges include:
- British Council
- Flash Academy
- Oxford University Press Project books from level 1 to 5, with workbooks and interactive resources
- Racing to English
- Inclusion Hub
- Learning Village
- Oak National Academy has auto-translated all of its courses into Ukrainian so children and young people can access learning in their language
- The Bell Foundation EAL Framework
Ukrainian people aged 19 and older will be able to access adult education, including English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) by contacting their local authority or further education college directly, which will be able to confirm what courses are available and when.
To help young people reflect on war and conflict in all forms, the charity Never Such Innocence offers writing workshops lasting 1.5 to 2 hours to schools and other education providers. Poetry, speech and songwriting workshops are available, subject to availability. To request a workshop, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Young people can submit their artwork, poetry, speeches, music and songs expressing their emotions, fears and hopes.
The Pianoman charity offers a number of scholarships to young Ukrainian people fleeing the war so they can continue playing the piano in the UK. It provides free piano tuition with world-class concert pianists, travel expenses (within the UK) and further assistance. Applicants must be aged between 11 and 17, and have achieved a proficiency level of grade 5 or higher.
Badger Learning is publishing six eBooks in a dual-language format, with English and Ukrainian text side by side and a glossary of commonly used words at the back. Books are all suitable for children in key stages 2 and 3. Badger Learning is offering these as free resources to schools to support the learning and integration of Ukrainian refugee children in the UK. The books are available as a free download for use in school or to print out and give to children to read at home.
ILT provides a multilingual digital book service for young children, Polylino. All the books are available for free for Ukrainian families arriving in the UK, including books that can be listened to in Ukrainian. (Some assistance to sign up with ‘username’ and ‘password’ may be required)
Supporting mental health
Teachers are not mental health professionals, and Ukrainian children and young people and their families may need ongoing support from specialist NHS and community services. Our mental health and behaviour guidance advises how education staff can identify children and young people in need of extra mental health support.
We encourage you to refer to and work with external agencies. We have published guidance that directs you to external sources of mental health and wellbeing support for teachers, school staff and school leaders to help you support children and young people who might need additional mental health support.
Psychological first aid e-learning training is available for parents, carers, front-line workers and volunteers supporting children and young people in emergency or crisis situations.
Barnardos offers help for anyone fleeing the Ukrainian conflict, or any child, young person or family affected by migration because of other conflicts. Therapy, advice and practical support are available by phone or online in other languages.
Senior mental health lead training grants for schools and colleges equip senior mental health leads with the knowledge and skills to implement effective processes for identifying students or specific groups who need additional mental health support.
Resources to support refugees
The International Rescue Committee (IRC) has a Healing Classrooms educator training programme that helps teachers promote social-emotional learning and academic proficiency while also addressing the demands of new teaching in the digital age. Training is led by IRC education specialists with extensive experience in the English education system and of working with refugees in Britain and abroad. Training sessions are delivered online to schools and teachers across the UK, as well as in-person in the South East of England.
The Including Children Affected by Migration (ICAM) programme has developed guidance, resource packs and coaching workshops for primary and secondary schools across Europe to help them welcome and include Ukrainian children and begin to repair the social and emotional disruption they have suffered. The ICAM programme works through the professional development of school leaders, who then help their school staff to restore learning relationships.
Save the Children has tips about how to talk to children about war.
The Red Cross has created a teacher resource to help young people explore the impacts that conflict and crisis have on people, and discuss our common human values.
Widget has produced a translated Refugee Support Pack that contains a range of translated and symbol-supported communication charts and other useful resources that can be used by anyone of any age to help refugees convey information, health and urgent needs and requirements.
We have provided information on dealing with misinformation on our Education Blog, Help for teachers and families to talk to pupils about Russia’s invasion of Ukraine
More information on how to spot false posts from Ukraine is available on the BBC News website.