Sir Peter Lampl and Sir Kevan Collins respond to the Education Secretary’s speech

Commenting on the Education Secretary’s speech to the Conservative Party conference and the announcement of new ‘Opportunity Areas’, Sir Peter Lampl, Chairman of the Sutton Trust and of the Education Endowment Foundation, said:

“The Education Secretary is right to recognise that a young person’s chance of getting on in life is affected by where they live.

“Overall social mobility in Britain is low. Also there are certain areas where it is extremely low – so called opportunity black spots. So, I welcome the Education Secretary’s plans for ‘Opportunity Areas’. They will bring extra focus and resources to areas where disadvantaged young people find it a struggle to get on.”

Sir Kevan Collins, Chief Executive of the Education Endowment Foundation, also said:

“The creation of ‘Opportunity Areas’ is an important step in addressing the shameful link between where a young person grows up and their educational achievements.

“If all schools are to produce great results for all their pupils, we must look to evidence of what has worked elsewhere to judge how to spend this important new resource. It’s vital that we learn from the successes of the best-performing schools and enable this to be shared in a supportive and constructive way with those who need more help.

“We plan to work with the new ‘Opportunity Areas’ to continue to support schools and young people from disadvantaged homes.”


1.The Sutton Trust is a foundation set up in 1997, dedicated to improving social mobility through education. It has published over 170 research studies and funded and evaluated programmes that have helped hundreds of thousands of young people of all ages, from early years through to access to the professions.

2.The Education Endowment Foundation (EEF) is a grant-making charity set up in 2011 by the Sutton Trust as lead foundation in partnership with Impetus Trust (now part of Impetus–The Private Equity Foundation), with a £125m founding grant from the Department for Education. The EEF is dedicated to breaking the link between family income and educational achievement. Since its launch the EEF has awarded £75.4 million to 127 projects working with over 750,000 pupils in over 7,500 schools across England. The EEF and Sutton Trust are, together, the government-designated What Works Centre for Education.