Identifying innovative models for supporting vulnerable learners achieve educational progression: Early findings from an evaluation of Social Innovation Fund Ireland's Education Fund
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Kovačič, Tanja, Forkan, Cormac, Dolan, Pat, Canavan, John, Furey, Eamonn, Shaw, Aileen, & Dolan, Brendan. (2019). Identifying Innovative Models for Supporting Vulnerable Learners achieve Educational Progression; Early findings from an Evaluation of Social Innovation Fund Ireland’s Education Fund. Galway: UNESCO Child and Family Research Centre, NUI Galway
This document is the first of three reports (2019, 2020, and 2021) from a major study being conducted by the UNESCO Child and Family Research Centre (UCFRC), NUI Galway, on Social Innovation Fund Ireland’s Education Fund. Social Innovation Fund Ireland (SIFI) was established by the government in 2015 to stimulate philanthropy and fill a gap in funding innovation for the non-profit sector. Its mission is to provide growth capital and supports to the best social innovations in Ireland, enabling them to scale and maximise their impact. Recognising the persistence of educational inequality and disadvantage in Irish society, SIFI introduced the Education Fund in late 2017 as a way to confront this extremely complex issue. The Fund was open to projects focused on improving educational outcomes for those experiencing educational disadvantage, and which specifically supported learners to progress from levels 3–6 on the National Framework of Qualifications. Following a rigorous selection process, 10 projects were chosen as recipients of the Award (see Table 1.1 below). Eight are based in Dublin and two in Cork. Each offers a form of alternative education when compared to the mainstream system.
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