Process and Timeline

The EEF application process has three stages:

Application Stage 1.

All applicants must begin by submitting an initial application form. Once the funding round closes, all applications are separately and individually reviewed by the EEF’s team of Programme Managers in order to identify a long-list of potential projects. Applications will be assessed by the EEF team on the basis of how well they match with the EEF’s funding criteria. The EEF Team will undertake further research and due diligence prior to taking a shortlist to be interviewed by some EEF Grants Committee members, which will give initial approval to a smaller number of projects. We will then let all applicants know the outcome of their application, usually within 2-3 months of the closing date for applications. Applications that have progressed through the initial interview will proceed to Stage Two.

Application Stage 2.

Projects that have received initial approval will then be progressed by our Programmes and Evaluation teams. Independent evaluators will be appointed by the EEF. The applicant, the evaluator and the EEF will work together to develop a detailed project plan, evaluation design and budget, and the EEF will undertake further due diligence. This is also the stage at which we would look to discuss the potential for co-funding with strategic partners in addition to any co-funding you have already identified. This process also usually takes 2-3 months.

Application Stage 3.

Once there are specific, costed plans for the project (and for its evaluation), the remaining applications will be taken to a second meeting of the EEF’s Grants Committee, which will recommend approval to the Board of Trustees. The Board of Trustees then meets to give the projects final approval. We will then draw up a Grant Agreement with the new grantees which sets milestones to assure successful delivery of the project.


There is normally at least 3-6 months between our Trustee’s approval of the project and delivery beginning in schools, in order to allow time for recruitment of schools and delivery of training. A delivery timeline will be agreed during the project planning stage outlined above.

Recent funding rounds:

Grants Round (Summer 2019 (Round 15)

Round opens for applications18 February 2019
Deadline for applications28 June 2019
Interview with trustees for shortlisted applicantsSeptember 2019
Formal approval by EEF trusteesJanuary 2020

Professional development in the early years: building evidence to close the gap

Round opens for applications15 November 2018
Deadline for applications17:00 on 15 February 2019
First review by trusteesApril 2019
Formal approval by EEF trusteesSummer 2019

Improving outcomes for pupils with SEND

Round opens for applications17 October 2018
Deadline for applications17:00 on 14 January 2019
First review by trusteesApril 2019
Formal approval by EEF trusteesSummer 2019
Round opens for applications 1 June 2018
Deadline for applications27 July 2018
First review by TrusteesSeptember 2018
Formal approval by EEF trusteesLate 2018
Round opens for applications 13 April 2018
Deadline for applications5 July 2018
Project interview with trusteesSeptember 2018
Grants Committee and final approval from Board of TrusteesJanuary 2019