QBE Foundation pledges more than £1.5 million for disadvantaged pupils in UK

With Action Tutoring, the insurer aims to bridge the academic attainment gap in the country

QBE Foundation pledges more than £1.5 million for disadvantaged pupils in UK

Non-Profits & Charities

By Kenneth Araullo

QBE Foundation has announced a partnership with charity group Action Tutoring to invest over £1.5 million to support children from disadvantaged backgrounds in their education. With support from the insurer’s funding, Action Tutoring aims to double within five years its number of pupils and reach more remote locations in the UK.

According to Action Tutoring, the attainment gap is on average 18 months between children from low-income backgrounds and their wealthier peers. This gap was already one of the largest in the developed world before the pandemic, and it grew much wider as the lockdowns happened, so much so that it would reportedly take a decade just to bring it back to pre-pandemic levels. However, the government is set to end the funding for the national tutoring program in 2024.

With this partnership, QBE Foundation and Action Tutoring are committing to reduce the attainment gap by providing free tuition to disadvantaged pupils through collaborations with non-selective state schools. This will enable disadvantaged pupils to make meaningful academic progress and open the doors to future employment and other opportunities.

In February, the National Audit Office warned that that additional tutoring’s future is at risk as the Department of Education chose to withdraw funding for tutoring over the next year. To address this, QBE Foundation has committed a minimum of three years funding with an annual contribution of at least £500,000, for a minimum commitment of £1.5 million. However, there is an understanding that the partnership and funding will extend to five years and beyond. QBE employees across the country will also volunteer to provide regular tutoring in local schools using Action Tutoring’s structured programs.

QBE Foundation and Action Tutoring’s partnership will focus on four outcomes over the next three years, including:

  • Increasing reach, with 30% of delivery based in schools outside the eight current urban hubs
  • Growing the number of pupils supported, from 6,000 in 2023 to 10,000 by 2026 and 12,000 in the future
  • Reducing the attainment gap in English and maths, with Action Tutoring pupils matching the national average pass rates for all pupils in reading SAT and English GCSE
  • Advocating for tutoring for disadvantaged pupils

“QBE is embarking on a different approach from traditional corporate philanthropy,” said Grant Clemence, QBE Foundation chairman. “At the point government funding is about to end, QBE is stepping in with considerable financial support to allow Action Tutoring to achieve specific outcomes that we both believe will dramatically improve the prospects for many underprivileged children. The money we provide is geared to achieving measurable progress in tackling the education attainment gap. I am delighted QBE is leading the charge in breaking new ground – not only in relation to helping vulnerable children but also in securing their place in the workforce of the future.”

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