About the SATT project

The Supporting All to Thrive study will provide a clear picture of the educational outcomes of children from Armed Forces backgrounds who have additional needs and/or disability, linked to a nuanced understanding of the dynamics and complexities characterising their educational trajectories and experiences.

The study is led by a team of researchers from Oxford Brookes University, and is guided by a Steering Group of expert stakeholders. It is funded by the Armed Forces Covenant Fund Trust, under the MOD Armed Forces Family Fund Research Grant programme.

The project runs from March 2024 to August 2025, with participant recruitment and data collection starting once MOD Research Ethics Committee approval has been granted.


The study comprises three complementary strands:

Strand 1

We will analyse national-level datasets to compare the attainment of Service children with Special Educational Needs and/or Disability with non-Service peers. This strand will provide a detailed understanding of the prevalence of additional needs among Service children in England, and will shed important light on their educational outcomes.

Strand 2

A survey will inform a better understanding of the experiences of provision for children with additional needs from both Service and non-Service families  It will also improve our awareness of any distinct groups of children with additional needs who particularly thrive or struggle educationally and our knowledge of factors affecting children’s success.

Strand 3

Arts workshops with parents and recent school leavers will provide rich insights into families’ and children’s lived experiences, challenges and successes.


Findings will inform recommendations for strengthening policies and provision for policymakers, practitioners and other stakeholders. The recommendations will allow stakeholders to better target resources, improve consistency of provision, and implement evidence-based solutions to support Service children with SEND, and fulfil their Covenant Duty obligations.

By enhancing the understanding and confidence of those who care for them, the research will support all children and their families to thrive.