Foster And Brown Research


What we are up to

Online Pupil Surveys 2020

The Wiltshire Children and Young People's Health and Wellbeing Survey is now open. The Oxfordshire Children and Young People's Health and Wellbeing Survey will be open after the February half term. Contact Pauline on 01285 700759 or email to find out how to sign up for the surveys.

GSCE Safeguarding Children (Section 175) Audit 2019/2020

The new Safeguarding Audit created on behalf of the Gloucestershire Safeguarding Children Executive (GSCE) is now open - deadline to complete is 12th February 2020.

Last year, we were asked to reproduce a Word Template and put it online. This involved schools collecting and inputting large amounts of evidence to justify their self-assessed levels of compliance. This year, the GSCE took a fresh look at what is required and then asked us to produce 'Version 2'. In summary:

  • OUT go all the 'Levels' with their dense text-based compliance lists - all aspects of the Safeguarding audit have been broken down into easy to respond to 'Yes/No' options, clearly set out in lists that are logically related to each other.
  • OUT go all the evidence inputs - by clicking 'Yes' to a question, you are expected to have the evidence. Random visits by the GSCE are always a possibility, so you will need to have that evidence to hand but you no longer have to type it in to the audit itself.
  • IN has come a clearer navigation system, so you can find your way around a lot easier. In addition, you land on a Dashboard that helps you keep track of your progress through the audit and allows you to view and/or print out your inputs so far.

To replace the 'Levels' that were an aspect of the previous audit, there will be an overall school 'audit rating' which will be based on the number of positive responses to specified questions asked in the audit as a whole. The rules for this haven't yet been finalised, so we are still working on it.

But never mind! The audit is open and we request that all schools complete by 12th February 2020.

Oxfordshire Online Pupil Survey 2019

The Oxfordshire Online Pupil Survey (OPS) 2019 is now complete and the data is starting to be analysed. It was funded by a University of Oxford Project called Pathfinder - iSAM. See more information about iSAM here (pdf). Pathfinder is aimed at gathering and integrating information from large data sets, such as online "E-Cohorts", to help researchers and health professionals better understand mental health and well-being. iSAM aims to gain insight into the mental health and well-being of children and adolescents, and the OPS is playing an important role in this project.

For more information on the background to the iSAM project, you can contact Karen or Mina at or read the approved information for parents here.

For information on the Oxfordshire survey content see here. For a description of how the LodeSeeker® data tool for schools works see here.

If you are an Oxfordshire school and you want to be part of this project, please contact Pauline for signup details.

More details »»

South Gloucestershire Online Pupil Survey 2019

The South Gloucestershire Online Pupil Survey (OPS) 2019 is now complete and Lodeseeker® is now available.

Details about our Online surveys »  

OPS helping to understand self-harm

Gloucestershire OPS results were used as part of a study investigating the incidence of suicide and self-harm in adolescents in England - published in The Lancet 12th December 2017 - Incidence of suicide, hospital-presenting non-fatal self-harm, and community-occurring non-fatal self-harm in adolescents in England (the iceberg model of self-harm): a retrospective study Guelayov G, Casey D, McDonald K.C, Foster P, Pritchard K, Wells C, Clements C, Kapur N, Ness J, Waters K, Hawton K

More from the Oxford researchers - a new guide for parents coping with their children self-harming - you are not alone

Also developed by the researchers at the University of Oxford there is a guide for School staff: Young people who self harm: A guide for school staff

More publications:

Here's more interesting stuff »»»

Interesting stuff

Using neurodesign to influence consumer choice

As part of our collaboration with split second research, Pauline presented a very interesting talk at food matters live about how our unconscious and emotional responses to packaging influence our choice of what to buy. Her presentation can be seen here.

Building resilience

Here is a useful resource for building resilience on the Whats on your mind? site set up by the Gloucestershire Clinical Commissioning Group

Good example of school survey use

This is a really good example of how gathering data and obtaining a deep understanding of behaviour can help tackle what may appear to be intractable problems with substance abuse - read about how Iceland is stopping teen substance abuse . Our survey asks very similar questions regarding substance abuse and type of activities and our reporting software allows analysts to compare schools and identify problem areas.


A recent presentation and report on electronic cigarettes by Public Health England South West identified key messages for specialist nurses which follow the messages in this blog from Public Health England. One of the remaining questions is whether e-cigarettes are a gateway to smoking in young people. One of our survey questions is attempting to gather evidence regarding this.

OPS accuracy

For those of you who are interested in the accuracy of our results, here's some figures for Gloucestershire in 2016:

Year Group Number in database % population based on NOR (as of October 2015)
Year 4 5,257 81.4%
Year 5 (new optional yeargroup) 3,613 58.0%
Year 6 4,898 79.6%
Year 8 5,428 83.3%
Year 10 5,156 81.5%
Year 12 in schools (not colleges) 2,674 76.5%

Statistically, that’s a confident interval of 0.28 at 95% confidence level or 0.36 at the 99% confidence level (this means if we repeated the survey over the entire population we would get the same results + or – 0.36% and we can be certain of this 99% of the time).