Case Studies

Literacy and numeracy

These are a few case studies from current projects we are funding. You can read about the impact our grants are having and learn more about the types of projects we support.

richard reeves class 01

Partners in Learning

In 2015, we entered into a partnership with Support and Help in Education (SHINE) and School-Home Support (SHS), two leading education charities with a shared mission to help all children achieve their potential regardless of their backgrounds or circumstances.

SHINE and SHS share a common mission to help children from low income families access the best possible education.

After funding both SHINE and SHS projects separately over a number of years, the Richard Reeve’s Foundation proposed developing a shared delivery model to help improve and accelerate impact.

Over the next three and a half years, SHINE and SHS will deliver shared activities in 10 primary schools in Islington and Camden.

Through our combined efforts, 80% of children receiving targeted support will improve their attendance and engagement with learning where it is a cause for concern, and 80% will improve their attainment, with direct impact on literacy and numeracy.

extra image 0
extra image 1
extra image 2
extra image 3

1. Pupils from Gladesmore Community School

2. Pupils from Pakeman Primary School

3. Boy writing

4. Girl learning

'I wish there was something like that when I was at school.'

'He can't wait to get here in the morning... I'd be in trouble if he missed it!'

'I only ever hear good things about him at SHINE.'

'My daughter acts as a SHINE teacher at home with the family. She teaches us what she learns.'


'The new SHINE/SHS partnership is an exciting opportunity to support and improve the life chances of vulnerable children.'

Head Teacher, Pakeman Primary School

Image caption here


Matthew was always getting into trouble at school. He couldn't follow his teacher's instructions and couldn't concentrate in class. He cried a lot when he didn't get his way.

Matthew's school experience was miserable. For him, school usually meant sitting outside the Head Teacher's office.

Thanks to SHINE, Matthew has discovered a positive outlet at the weekends. Access to interesting places and new learning experiences on Saturdays has inspired him to take more interest in learning  during the school week.

Through SHINE Matthew has been transformed from a student at risk of exclusion to a 'school ambassador', who is not only achieving much better grades himself, but has also begun helping other struggling students to stay on the right path.


After Kia's dad disappeared, her mum struggled to raise Kia by herself. Feeling angry and frustrated, Kia became disruptive at home and at school. Pretty soon, her classwork began to suffer and she found herself on a downwards spiral.

At SHINE, Kia's confidence began to improve in a matter of weeks. With the time, space and support to help deal with the issues she was facing, Kia changed from being in trouble with her peers to being recognised as a natural leader. Repeatedly nominated for the Learner of the Week Award, by the end of the school year she had made double the expected progress in reading. Even better, Kia now has an eye on the future too, expressing a desire to go to college when she leaves school.

Camden Centre for Learning

We’ve funded an SHS practitioner in Camden’s Pupil Referral Unit for a number of years. They help secondary aged children and young people with complex needs including social, emotional and behavioural difficulties.

The SHS practitioner’s role is tailored to meet the needs of the individual students. Typically it includes supporting students to return to mainstream education where possible, and arranging for young people to benefit from work experience to support their progression into employment. The practitioner also engages parents and guardians of students at CCfL with the facility and with their child’s learning.

'Juliet is a highly valued member of the multiagency team with Camden Centre for Learning... Juliet has been a key part of engaging parents/carers successfully, offering them a positive experience of offers of help and support, which may contrast with their past experiences.'

Mike Solomon, Clinical Psychologist and Manager,
MultiAgency Team, CCfL


Juliet, our practitioner at Camden Centre for Learning, noticed that Michael wasn't attending. She contacted his mum Nadia to find out more about the family.

They had just moved into the area and they didn't have much money. Michael was sharing a bed with his two brothers and they didn't have a lot of basic things most of us take for granted.

Thanks to the SHS Welfare Fund, Michael and his brothers now have bunk beds so they can sleep better. The family has a new cooker so mum can prepare meals at home.

But those were just the basics. The family owed a lot of money, so Juliet supported Nadia during meetings with the debt collectors. They were entitled to benefits but Nadia hadn't understood how to get them. Juliet made sure the family received the financial support they needed. She also got in touch with local community groups to make the family feel welcome in the area.

Juliet has been there every step of the way, whether the family needed help with practical things or just wanted some emotional support.

Michael has started to come back to CCFL and now has a real chance to improve his school achievement.

Ampersand Learning Partnership

Research shows that, when parents are involved with their child’s learning to read, they influence the child’s attitude to books and the ability to read fluently.

Reading to children at home helps them develop important life skills. It can help build tolerance and resilience to stress. This means children will be able to cope more effectively with life’s challenges. Reading can also support good mental health and reduce delinquent behaviour.

Ampersand Learning Partnership (ALP) is a social enterprise that runs engaging classes and workshops for parents and their children in schools.

During the academic year 2016/17, we’ll be supporting ALP’s “Turning the Page” project in Brecknock and Primrose Hill primary schools in Camden.

ALP is delivering the project’s innovative reading and parenting workshops. The creative sessions use books and interactive videos to engage the whole family.

By helping parents to understand how children learn to read, the project gives them the confidence to support their children at home.

Ampersand Learning Partnership

Tracy Clark

Tracy Clark is a parent of three children taking part in the ‘Turning the Page’ project at Brecknock School. She says:

‘At first I wasn’t sure whether I would get anything out of being part of this project. But it’s been really good to share stories in the sessions with other parents. It’s reassuring to know that you’re not the only one struggling to get the kids off to school in the mornings.

The afternoon sessions with our children are absolutely amazing. My son Michael wasn’t very keen at first but by the third time we went, he was really engaging with the stories. I’ve seen him grow in confidence as he acts out the characters. Now he can’t wait for Tuesdays!

Michael is so proud of the envelope puppets he made at home over half-term. He insisted I read the story “The Gruffalo” to him aloud three times while he joined in with his puppets!’