Schools face constant financial and budgetary pressures, meaning money is often tight.

That’s why we’ve rounded up a selection of the funding opportunities available to schools, alongside funding news and freebies schools can take advantage of.  


In the news


MPs announce inquiry into school funding


The inquiry will examine whether the government should have a 10-year plan for schools and colleges, instead of the current three-year spending reviews.

The investigation will also look at the effectiveness of the pupil premium and how the national funding formula will be implemented.

You can send a written submission here.


£96 million to support talented arts pupils


On 10 April, Nick Gibb, the School Standards Minister, announced new funding that will be used to support talented music, drama and dance pupils to realise their potential and kick-start their career.

The funding will give pupils access to a range of opportunities like training at the Royal Ballet School, film-making classes at the British Film Institute (BFI) Film Academy, and visits to museums and galleries.


‘Future talent fund’ launched


Nick Gibb has invited organisations to manage the new £23 million funding designed to support the academic attainment of the most-able pupils from disadvantaged backgrounds.

The new fund manager will run and evaluate at least 30 trial projects between January 2019 and July 2020.

A variety of organisations, including maintained schools and MATs, will be eligible to apply for the funding in the Autumn 2018. Projects supported by the fund must be delivered in non-selective, state-funded secondary schools in England and will cover at least one of the following strands of work:

  • Curriculum
  • Pedagogy
  • Parental involvement
  • Mentoring and tutoring
  • Transition between key stages
  • Enrichment activities


£13.5 million announced to fund schemes to help close disadvantaged children’s ‘word gap’


The first of the schemes is a £5 million programme run by the Education Endowment Foundation (EEF) – this will help trial projects in the North of England to provide “practical tools and advice” to parents so they can help their children to learn new words.

The second programme is for a new early years social mobility review programme – £8.5 million has been committed to the Local Governance Association (LGA) to facilitate this.

Both schemes aim to “build the confidence of parents to support their children in language and reading at an early stage” to reduce the gap in communication skills between disadvantaged children and their peers.


Don’t miss out – upcoming deadlines


Condition Improvement Fund (CIF) appeals


The window for applicants to appeal following the outcomes for the 2018 to 2019 CIF round closes at 12 noon on Thursday 17 May 2018.

Applicants should refer to the ESFA’s guidance and their feedback on the CIF portal before making an appeal.

The ESFA expects to announce the outcomes of the appeals round in July 2018.


Women’s Vote Centenary Grant Scheme


The Women’s Vote Centenary Grant Scheme is a £1.5 million government fund that will support local and community groups across England in celebrating the centenary of women gaining the right to vote.

Any voluntary or community organisation, school college and university can apply.

  • Round 2 of applications to the Small Grants Fund for grants between £300 and £2,000 is open now and will close on Friday 18 May 2018.
  • Round 3 of applications to the Small Grants Fund opens on Thursday 12 July 2018 and closes on Friday 14 September 2018.
  • Round 2 of applications to the Large Grant Fund for grants between £2,000 and £65,000 is open and will close on Thursday 17 May 2018.

There is an online application form to complete – more information can be found on the Women’s Vote Centenary Fund website.


Institute of Physics (IOP) – public engagement grant scheme


Grants of up to £2,000 are available to schools for running physics-based events and activities that raise public awareness of and engagement with contemporary physics.

Applications will close at 12 noon on Monday 7 May 2018 – you can find out more about how to apply here.


Polar explorer programme – boosting attainment in STEM subjects


The Polar explorer programme is a £1 million government-funded project that aims to inspire the next generation of scientists and engineers.

The programme uses the UK’s new polar research ship, the RRS Sir David Attenborough, to bring a new context to science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM) subject teaching. Selected schools will receive support in areas such as working scientifically and developing pupils’ enquiry skills.

The programme is looking for applications from state-funded primary schools that have attainment in STEM subjects that is lower than the national average and would like to improve performance at key learning transition points.

The closing date for applications is Thursday 31 May 2018 and successful applicants should hear back from the programme by mid-July – find out more information here.


Get funded – funding opportunities and grants


EEF launches latest grant-funding round


The EEF is seeking applications for high-potential projects which aim to improve attainment and related outcomes for disadvantaged children and young people.

The latest funding round highlights three areas the EEF is keen to receive applications regarding:

  • Proposals focussed on improving teaching in secondary schools.
  • Popular programmes that are widely used by schools, and where there is demand from schools for better evidence of impact.
  • Proposals aiming to support 16-18-year-old learners who have not achieved the expected standard (grade 4 or above) in GCSE English or maths by age 16.

This funding round will close on Thursday 5 July 2018 – further information can be found here.


Kellogg’s breakfast club grants programme


Kellogg’s has grants of up to £1,000 available to help schools provide breakfast to children who need it most – the fund is being administered by Forever Manchester.

Schools in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland can apply – priority will be given to schools that have 40 percent and above of pupils eligible for pupil premium.

Applications can be made at any time – the fund may close at any time if it becomes oversubscribed.


National Lottery Awards for All


National Lottery Awards for All offers funding from £300 to £10,000 to support what matters to people and communities – schools are able to apply for the funding.

Applicants must meet at least one of the following three priorities and detail in their application how they meet at least one of them:

  • Bringing people together and building strong relationships in and across communities
  • Improving the places and spaces that matter to communities
  • Enabling more people to fulfil their potential by working to address issues at the earliest possible stage.

You can apply using this online form.


The Wolfston Foundation – Secondary Education Programme


The Wolfston Foundation’s Secondary Education Programme is primarily dedicated to supporting the teaching of A-levels and GCSEs at high-achieving state-funded schools and sixth-form colleges through the funding of capital projects.

The Foundation currently allocate approximately £1.75 million each year to:

  • New build, refurbishment or equipment projects related to the teaching of science and technology.
  • Information or communications technology directly related to learning for projects involving libraries, languages, music or the arts.

Grants do not usually exceed £50,000 for secondary schools and £100,000 for sixth-form colleges.

Before you submit an application, make sure you have read the information here.


Garfield Weston Foundation


The Garfield Weston Foundation awards grants to educational projects – regular grants for applications below £100,000 and major grants for applications of £100,000 or more.

Applications can be submitted at any time – more information can be found here.


The Edge Grant Fund 2018


The Edge Grant Fund has a total of £1 million to award to projects that build on proven models of success or which test new approaches to education and learning.

All projects must address areas of skills shortages in the UK and have regard to at least one of the following funding themes:

  • Improving careers education, information, advice and guidance
  • Supporting the development of project-based learning and associated employer engagement
  • Supporting the development of a 14-19 curriculum which integrates both academic and technical subjects
  • Supporting the development of innovative approaches to higher education at levels 4, 5 and 6
  • Developing ways to measure the performance of technical education

Projects put forward by applicants must support Edge’s plan for education and must support innovation or development within technical and professional learning.

You can apply for funding here.


FE area reviews: funding to restructure colleges


FE or sixth-form colleges that need to make major changes following an area review recommendation and cannot fund it themselves can seek funding from the government’s restructuring facility.

Applications and supporting documents can be sent to – this must be done within six months of the final area review steering group meeting.

Find our more here.


Healthy Heart Grant


Heart Research UK and Subway have teamed up to offer healthy heart grants of up to £10,000 to selected projects that promote heart-healthy lifestyles – applications are open for 2018.

The grant programme is rolled out on a regional basis throughout the year – you can check your eligibility and find out where to sign up here.


The best of the freebies


Match funding for school library books


BookLife is offering pound-for-pound match funding for books when a school places an order – e.g. if you spend £100 with BookLife, they will give you an additional £100 to spend on their website or in their catalogue.

This offer ends on Tuesday 24 July 2018 – you can find out more here.


YoungMinds 360° Schools’ Community


The YoungMinds 360° Schools’ Community contains free tips, advice and resources on mental health and wellbeing in schools.

If you sign up, you’ll receive e-newsletters, blogs, teaching resources, case studies and the opportunity to share and listen to examples of good practice with regards to mental health provision in schools.

Find out more here.


Dogs Trust


The Dogs Trust delivers free workshops supporting a range of curriculum subjects to both primary and secondary schools.

The workshops aim to develop communication, cooperation, build confidence and self-esteem, and encourage responsibility and respects.

Book your free workshop here.


We want to hear from you


Does your school use innovative methods to generate income, fundraise or utilise funding? Would you like to share these with your peers?

Email us  with your experiences and you may be included in our next monthly funding round up.




DfE (2018) ‘Funding boost for the arts to support talented pupils’ <> [Accessed: 30 April 2018]

DfE (2018) ‘Fund for bright disadvantaged pupils launched’ <> [Accessed: 30 April 2018]

Dogs Trust (2017) ‘About our workshops’ <> [Accessed: 30 April 2018]

Education Endowment Foundation (2018) ‘EEF launches new grant-funding round’ <> [Accessed: 30 April 2018]

Garfield Weston Foundation (2017) ‘Grant Guidelines’ <> [Accessed: 30 April 2018]

Government Equalities Office (2018) ‘Women’s Vote Centenary Grant Scheme’ <> [Accessed: 30 April 2018]

Heart Research UK (2017) ‘Heart Research UK and Subway Healthy Heart Grant’ <> [Accessed: 30 April 2018]

Institute of Physics (2018) ‘Public Engagement Grant Scheme’ <> [Accessed: 30 April 2018]

National Lottery (2018) ‘National Lottery Awards for All England’ <> [Accessed: 30 April 2018]

School Funding Service (2018) ‘Kellogg’s Breakfast Club Grants Programme’ <> [Accessed: 30 April 2018]

School Funding Service (2018) ‘Match funding for school library books’ <> [Accessed: 30 April 2018]

STEM Learning (2018) ‘Polar Explorer programme: get involved and boost attainment in STEM subjects’ <> [Accessed: 30 April 2018]

The Edge Foundation (2018) ‘The Edge Grant Fund 2018’ <> [Accessed: 30 April 2018]

The Wolfston Foundation (2013) ‘Secondary Education’ <> [Accessed: 30 April 2018]

YoungMinds (2017) ‘360° Schools’ Community’ <> [Accessed: 30 April 2018]