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EEFective Kent Project

The EEFective Kent Project is a four-year partnership between Kent County Council and the Education Endowment Foundation (EEF). Both organisations have contributed to a joint funding pot worth £600,000 to support the implementation of evidence-based approaches and interventions in Kent, aiming to support the improvement of educational outcomes for children across the county. Schools can participate in all parts of the project.

There are three parts to the project:

  • Promising Projects
  • Evidence-based Training
  • Developing Research Champions.

The last academic year was anything but normal - the plans for the EEFective Kent Project had to adapt like so many other activities in schools. School leaders and stakeholders told us that the training and projects on offer responded directly to their needs, but that longer application windows would help them. We responded by reopening the booking request window for Evidence-based Training.

Developing Research Champions

This strand of the EEFective Kent Project (EKP) is focused on developing evidence-based leadership in Kent and sustaining positive impact beyond the duration of the project. Development is ongoing to ensure this strand is complementary to the Research Hub work already underway, led by Kent Association of Headteachers (KAH) in partnership with EKP. The aim is to develop and build evidence-informed system leadership through designating:

  • Kent-wide Evidence Leaders in Education (ELEs)
  • In-school Evidence Champions
  • An Associate Research School for Kent, providing an ongoing link to the EEF which includes access to training and support and acting as a training and support centre for evidence-informed practice.

Evidence Champions

Please note that registration for Evidence Champion training is now closed. If you would like to receive regular updates from the EEFective Kent Project Team, including dates of the next round which will start later this year, please email and request to be added to the mailing list.

Evidence Champions support, encourage and engage colleagues with how to source, access and understand high-quality research evidence, as well as how to apply this to teaching and learning, CPD or school improvement planning. Their work will support school leadership to ensure that planned school improvement activity is shaped by research evidence. This is an in-school role and an exciting opportunity to empower a strong practitioner within the school to be an evidence lead. The benefits of introducing an Evidence Champion in school include:

  • Having a member of staff who is research-literate and able to support SLT with the implementation of CPD and policies.
  • It’s a workload win - making evidence-based decisions and implementing effectively means your plans are more likely to work first-time round.
  • It offers a strong professional development opportunity for those interested in exploring research-informed school leadership.
  • Evidence Champions will gain access to a network of like-minded evidence enthusiasts across Kent through the forums, as well as links with the Kent Research Hub and Kent Associate Research School.

Durrington Research School hosted an online event for Headteachers and SLT members to find out more about the Evidence Champion role and shared details about the training, the wider support package and the next steps to set up the Evidence Champion role in your school. If you are interested in this but missed the launch, a recording of the session is available.

What will the training look like?

The Evidence Champion training will comprise three online twilight training modules:

  • What is an Evidence Champion? Why do schools need an Evidence Champion?
  • What sources of evidence are available and how can we evaluate their usefulness?
  • How can schools effectively mobilise the research evidence and evaluate its impact?

This will be followed with a face-to-face networking workshop.

Kent schools will be able to access fully-funded training by the EEF’s Research Schools Network to become an Evidence Champion. Following this, participating schools will be eligible for some additional funding from the EKP to embed and sustain this work in their context (e.g. for staff release time or bespoke support from an Evidence Leader in Education). Small schools may want to collaborate across networks and federations to enable them to engage with the offer.

The Evidence Champion project is an integral part of a wider Research Hub partnership between the EEFective Kent Project and KAH.

Kent Associate Research School Appointed

Following the closure of applications for Associate Research School status in Kent we are pleased to announce that Kingsnorth CE Primary School in Ashford has been appointed, further information is available in the announcement from the EEF. Kingsnorth CE Primary School will operate as an associate of Durrington Research School to build a strong network of collaborative, evidence-informed practice across Kent. The Associate Research School is funded jointly by the Education Endowment Foundation and Kent County Council through the EEFective Kent Project.

An Associate Research School works alongside a designated EEF Research Schools as part of the EEF Research School Network and can be a single school, a group of schools or, in some exceptional circumstances, a charitable organisation focused on school improvement (for example, a Teaching School constituted as a charity). With guidance from their designated Research School, Associate Research Schools provide support to other schools in their region to use research evidence to address challenges they may be facing within their settings. This support is provided through advice, signposting to the relevant evidence, training, and the provision of wrap-around support. To do this an Associate Research School receives training and support from their designated Research School.

The EEF and Durrington Research School held on Associate Research School information session in September, this session was recorded and can be accessed on Vimeo

Evidence Leaders in Education (ELE)

The recruitment of ELEs was the first activity under this part of the project. Six ELEs were appointed by the Durrington and Charles Dickens Research Schools. Find out who our new Kent based ELEs are

The role of an ELE is to support the implementation of evidence-informed practice, including providing implementation support for teachers and school leaders who are undertaking any of the Evidence-based Training programmes through the EEFective Kent Project. ELEs have been recruited on a one-year contract; they will continue to work in their own school or organisation but will be deployed to work with other schools for a set number of days per academic year.

Evidence-based Training

The EEFective Kent Project has provided 50% match-funding towards the core training costs for up to two programmes per school of Evidence-Based Training. In addition to this, fully funded wrap-around support is offered to all participating schools and delivered by Evidence Leaders in Education.

There are currently no training programmes to sign-up to, but a new round is planned for the next academic year. Please sign-up to our mailing list by emailing or return to this webpage for future updates.

Promising Projects

The EEFective Kent Project offered Kent schools and academies 50% match-funding towards a selection of the EEF’s Promising Projects. Promising Projects are approaches with a strong evidence base of improving outcomes that cover a wide range of subjects, some of which are whole school, or class focused and others which are more targeted to respond to specific issues and learning gaps.

Kent schools who participated are introducing Promising Projects to their settings following receiving match-funding from the EEFective Kent Project. The Stour Academy Trust have shared their experience of introducing 1stClass@Number and the impact this has had across their schools in our first case study, First Class Maths at The Stour Academy Trust (PDF, 1.2 MB).

Match-funding is no longer available, but you are still able to contact the providers directly if you would like to engage with their programmes. If you would like to know more about this part of the project, take a look at the Promising Project Prospectus, (PDF, 1.7 MB) which includes an overview of each Promising Project, a summary of evidence and contact details for the Promising Project Providers.

Evaluating the EEFective Kent Project

Help us to understand the different ways in which you are supporting pupil progress.

The Institute for Employment Studies (IES), an independent not-for-profit research organisation, has been appointed to carry out research and evaluation as part of the EEFective Kent Project.

During December 2020, all schools in Kent were invited to take part in a short survey. Thank you to all schools who completed this. The answers provided by all schools who took part are confidential and all survey data is anonymous and will not be shared with anyone outside of the research team at IES. Further details about how data is used in this research can be found in the privacy notice

A formal evaluation of the whole project is taking place. This has been commissioned by the Education Endowment Foundation and will be published at the end of the project.

If you have any questions about the survey or the evaluation, you can contact Ceri Williams, the Project Manager at IES on or Emma Pollard, the Project Director at IES on

Keep in touch and find out more

If you would like to receive regular updates from the EEFective Kent Project Team, including the latest opportunities and funding available to Kent schools and academies, please email and request to be added to the mailing list.


Contact Details

If you have any questions, would like more information or would like to join the EEFective Kent Project mailing list, please email