EEF Transition Catch-Up Round Open

EEF opens £10 million funding round for primary-secondary transition work

The Education Endowment Foundation (EEF) today welcomed the announcement from the Children’s Minister that the Government has awarded £10 million to pilot projects that will help disadvantaged pupil premium pupils during the transition from primary to secondary school. The EEF is now seeking proposals from schools and others to find out what works in raising the attainment of under-achieving pupils during this critical and often difficult educational transition. Bids which seek to raise attainment in literacy are particularly welcomed.

Sir Peter Lampl, Chair of the EEF, said: "We very much welcome the Minister’s announcement that the Government is investing £10 million for the EEF to fund and rigorously evaluate projects to find out what works in helping disadvantaged children make the difficult transition from primary to secondary school. We know that the challenge of navigating this transition successfully is one of the key barriers to improving social mobility in this country."

Dr Kevan Collins, Chief Executive of the EEF, said: "Evidence shows that children who are behind their peers early on in their secondary school careers struggle to catch up – we want to find out what actually makes the difference in nurturing the literacy and life skills at the end of primary school that are so important for success in secondary schooling and beyond."

Sarah Teather, Children’s Minister, said: "Being able to read fluently by the end of primary school is essential. Without these skills children fall further behind in their education. This programme, funded by the Pupil Premium, will help struggling pupils catch up. It will also help close the gulf in achievement, where the poorest children are less likely to leave school with five good GCSEs than their less disadvantaged classmates."

This dedicated round will allow schools to explore and expand a wide range of approaches which will help pupil premium pupils who have achieved below Level 4 at Key Stage 2 to navigate the transition. Applications from schools, charities, universities and other not-for-profit organisations are welcomed via the EEF website. In addition, the EEF has commissioned a literature review of the transition by Professor Stephen Gorard of Birmingham University, which provides guidance on some promising approaches to raising attainment in literacy around the transition.

Since its creation in 2011 the EEF has awarded £10.3 million to twenty projects that aim to improve the attainment of poor pupils, in its first full round of grants. The grants will involve over 225,000 pupils in over 900 primary and secondary schools across England.

The EEF is a charity set up by the Sutton Trust as the lead charity in partnership with Impetus Trust with a Department for Education endowment of £125m to boost the attainment of disadvantaged children in some of the country’s most challenging schools.

For further information visit the Transition Catch Up Round page on our website or contact the EEF on 020 7802 1676 or email

The Department for Education Press release can be found here.