Skip Content

The Buttle UK Quality Mark For Care Leavers

The Buttle UK Quality Mark is an award to further and higher education providers who have demonstrated their commitment to young people in and leaving care 

Quality Mark Logo

In 2006, the Buttle UK Quality Mark was introduced to provide a framework to improve and accredit support for Looked After Children and Care Leavers in Further and Higher Education. The Quality Mark marks excellence recognising and celebrating the work institutions do, to raise aspirations among children and young people in and leaving care and to help them access and succeed in college, university and beyond.

The awareness of the issues around the educational progression of students from has risen significantly and the Quality Mark has helped change practice across higher and further education. The Quality Mark is no longer awarded in England, Northern Ireland and Wales. Buttle UK will continue to award institutions in Scotland until July 2015.

Since its beginning in 2006, 112 Higher Education and 81 Further Education Institutions have achieved the Quality Mark. 

At the very least, care experienced students should expect: 

  • A named contact*. Every college or university with the Quality Mark has someone who is there to support Looked After Children and Care Leavers. They will talk to you about what they can offer you. 
  • Money. Specific financial support for students who have been in care - this might be a bursary (money to help you during your course which you don't have to pay back), or advice about what extra funding you might be entitled to as a care leaver. 
  • Accommodation. If you need help with where you are living while at college or university there is someone you can speak to. Universities will offer 365 days accommodation during your course.
  • Support. Someone to talk to about anything you are worried about, no matter what it is. This person can support you personally or will direct you to someone else who can. 
  • Each college and university offers lots more support for students who have care experience. Many will offer support during the application process, as well as advice if you are worried about how being at college or uni will affect your money. Some also offer taster days for example to give you a feel of what to expect before you start. All you need to do is ask the key contact* and find out what they offer.        

*To find the right contact check our list of colleges or list of universities or look at the college and university guides.

The Quality Mark was supported by a grant from the following organisations:
Esmeé Fairbairn Foundation Logo

The Sylvia Adams Charitable Trust Logo

Freemason's Grand Charity logo

   QM colleges

    QM Universities



The Quality Mark was supported by

Higher Education Funding Council For England

Action on Access
Association of Colleges Guild HE logo
Colleges Northern Ireland Scottish Funding Council
AMOSSHE Higher Education Funding Council for Wales
Office for Fair Access Scotland's Colleges
UCAS Universities UK logo
  NASMA logo