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What we do

Royal SpringBoard is a charity providing disadvantaged and vulnerable children and young people with the life-transforming opportunity of a fully funded boarding school education.


We are a national charity providing bursary opportunities for children and young people across the UK.  All of the children and young people that we support are from families where the household income has been assessed as being well below that needed to fund a boarding school education.  They either are currently, or have been, looked after in the care system; vulnerable and on the 'edge of care' due to difficult home lives; or are from areas with high levels of social deprivation.

Some are referred to us directly by families concerned that the child or young person is facing significant vulnerabilities.  For exampled, the child may have experienced a parental death, abuse, or sibling/parent disability that suggests they would benefit from boarding.  For these applications we seek endorsement from at least two professional referees, such as Children's Social Services or Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS).

Others are referred to us by our network of partner organisations: Local Authorities, community and mentoring organisations, charities, and/or state schools (typically those without their own 6th Form, referring pupils during their Year 11).  Our partner organisations are concentrated in areas classified as being in the most deprived areas of the UK.  We work together with these partner organisations to carefully identify young people who would benefit most from the positive impact of a boarding school environment.

Most of the children and young people that we support start their boarding school placements at the natural school entry points of Year 7 (age 11), Year 9 (age 13) and Year 12 (age 16).  In exceptional circumstances, we place some children who are younger than 11 years old. Typically, these placements relate to children who would otherwise be at risk of being looked after in the care system.

By securing fully-funded bursaries at state or independent boarding schools, we provide these children and young people with the opportunity to move to a safe and structured environment, away from often troubled and challenging circumstances.

Why do we do it . . . ?

. . . because we make a difference to deserving children - giving them the chance to build on their remarkable skills and talents by accessing the opportunities provided by a boarding school environment.

- Ian Davenport, CEO, Royal SpringBoard

Number of pupils receiving life-transforming bursaries:


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Central to our mission is the way we embrace the ‘Whole Child’ agenda, making sure that each pupil's  needs are met with tailored support.

We take care to find the right boarding school for each child/young person, whatever their educational profile.  Having secured their place at boarding school, throughout the course of their placement we provide help and support to each child/young person to ensure that they adapt and thrive in their new school environment.

To do so we work with a range of community and mentoring organisations, state schools (typically those without their own 6th Form) and Local Authorities to provide each child with significant pastoral support.  These partnerships help to build strong links between families, home communities and schools.  Staying in touch to ensure successful settling in, liaising with families to smooth the transition, working with our boarding schools if issues arise and supporting the children and young people throughout the holidays to encourage them to continue to grow in confidence.

This pastoral care approach is supported by a pioneering online social-emotional tracking programme developed by the data organisation, STEER. All of the pupils that we have supported since 2017 participate in STEER's tracking programme, which provides vital information for us, our boarding schools and our partners, on our pupils' emotional and social wellbeing that we can use to help guide our support in a targeted way.

Our driving passion is to help more deserving children. Of the more than 700 children and young people that we have supported to date, around 450 are currently in schools.  We have ambitious plans to double this number and aim to place 2,000 pupils in boarding schools at any one time by 2024.

This is because we know, through independent research and our own impact assessment work, that by advancing the education of those in need through our bursary scheme, young lives and consequently communities, can be dramatically changed for good.