The 100 Schools
How the 100 schools were chosen
A number of principles guided how we selected our 20 pilot schools, and the following the success of this we used the same criteria to select the 80 further schools to complete the cohort.
We chose schools in each of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, in approximate proportion to the school population in each country. Although poverty and deprivation are found across the whole of the UK, we focused mainly on the north and on coastal towns.
The following criteria, with some carefully considered exceptions, were applied:
This was the first key filter applied to our school searches, which we used to ensure our approach was objective and consistent.
The IMD splits the whole of the UK into small areas, each is ranked according to the level of deprivation found within it. For example, in England there are 32,800 small areas where 1 is the most deprived and 32,800 is the most advantaged. Ninety-nine of our schools have postcodes that fall within decile 1, the most disadvantaged 10% of communities within the UK.
The size of the school roll was a further filter. With a few exceptions, schools with more than 300 children – who have larger budgets – were not included. We concentrated on smaller schools where we thought the donation would make a significant difference.
The proportion of free school meals is a universally-accepted indicator of deprivation. We applied this as another key factor when searching for schools. We were sensitive to schools with a moderate percentage of free school meals but with a high proportion of children whose parents are not always eligible for free school meals.
We expect new data, post-Covid, to show an increase in the numbers of children qualifying for free school meals in 2022 and beyond.
This initiative is aimed at stand-alone schools embedded in their local communities where headteachers have full control of their budget. For this reason we have avoided giving funding to schools in multi-academy trusts.