Skip to content

Past event Part of series: Research Commission: Poverty and Policy Advocacy

Schools, community and the low attainment nexus

RC Logo (Poverty and Policy)

The BERA Commission on Poverty and Policy Advocacy: seminar series

Online registration has now closed. If you want to attend this event, please email for details of how to register onsite.

The BERA Poverty and Policy Commission aims to influence and broaden public debate on the role of education to improve the life chances of children & youth living in poverty. The Commission comprises six interlinked seminars that provide spaces for academics, teachers and policy makers across the four jurisdictions of the UK to engage in knowledge building about poverty and cumulative multiple deprivations as these find expression in education and schooling.

The third seminar in the series will expand themes emerging from the previous two seminars, held in Leeds and Cardiff, but specifically highlighting child poverty and education concerns for Northern Ireland. It will take as its primary focus the relationship between schools and communities and will:

  • illustrate education and community patterns in Northern Ireland (NI) discussing the implications of these for understanding the impact of child poverty;
  • examine how notions of capital impact differently in working and middle class communities and how less desirable outcomes such as restrictions on individual freedoms and a downward leveling of social norms can create a low attainment nexus;
  • explore schools’ levels of engagement, accessibility, and innovation in terms of raising attainment levels amongst children and young people in low income areas;
  • discuss policy/ practice interventions that have been shown to improve children’s educational engagement, attainment and life chances in NI and contrast these with examples of innovation from the other three UK jurisdictions.
09.30 Registration and Coffee
10.00 Introductions and framing seminar 3    
Profs Ruth Leitch & Joanne Hughes
10.15 Welcome to Queen’s and a perspective on education, schools and community
Prof Tony Gallagher
10.40 Education and Poverty NI
Dr Goretti Horgan (University of Ulster)
11.00 Discussion on theme
11.30 Coffee
12.00 Schools, community and the low attainment nexus & social capital in NI
(Queen’s University team)
13.00 Lunch
13.45 Research on Policy/Practice Innovations
Extended Schools’ initiative
Dr Stephanie Burns – Mr Alan Logan (School Principal)
14.30 England
Dr Ian Thompson ( Oxford) on Poverty and Teacher Education (PATE)
14.45 Scotland
Prof Stephen McKinney & Dr Stuart Hall (Glasgow University)
15.00 Wales
Professor Gabrielle Ivinson
15.15 Tea
15.30 Discussion & Wrap up
16.00 Close of meeting


BERA offer a limited amount of bursaries for BERA Student Members only.

  • Bursaries are available for BERA Student Members to the value of £50 towards travel, and complimentary registration for the event.

To apply for one of these bursaries, please email with a 200 word statement on why you want to attend this event. Bursaries are offered on a first come, first served basis. Once approved you will be sent details of how to register online. Travel expenses will be reimbursed after the event in accordance with our travel policies. You must not have previously received bursary funding from BERA in the current year.