Moving from Primary school to Secondary school is a big step. Many children feel ready for and relish the opportunity. Some are anxious and uncertain about the changes to come. Every year around 500,000 11 year olds make this move up to “big school”. A wealth of evidence from national studies suggests that, for some children from less advantaged backgrounds, the transition can mark the start of a downward turn in their progression journey, and the point at which they begin to fall behind their more socially advantaged peers.
Primary schools and secondary schools are investing time and funding to smooth the transition, and research by the Education Endowment Fund has identified a range of effective interventions that can help. Aspiration raising through higher education outreach is one such activity.