By clicking “Accept”, you agree to the storing of cookies on your device to enhance site navigation, analyse site usage, and assist in our marketing efforts. View our Privacy Policy for more information.
Browse all programmes
Arts & Culture
Careers & Employability
Curriculum Support
Employer Outreach
Outdoors & Adventure
Parents & Community
Science, Technology, Engineering & Maths
University Access
Volunteering & Social Action
Youth Provision

Elephant Access Programme

Available across the UK
Northern Ireland
England - North East
England - North West
England - Yorkshire & Humber
England - West Midlands
England - East Midlands
England - South West
England - South East
England - East
England - Greater London
Available internationally
Czech Republic
South Africa
New Zealand
0 - 4
4 - 7
7 - 11
11 -16
16 - 18
18 - 21
21 -25
25 - 30
30 - 35
In person
Online & in person
In person
Through a school or college
Through an organisation
Independently / Self-serve
ListeningSpeakingProblem SolvingCreativityStaying PositiveAiming HighLeadershipTeamwork
Impact Level 2Impact Level 1Impact Level 3Impact Level 4

The Elephant Group is a headteacher-led charity that is committed to creating fair student access to top universities and degree courses.

Talent comes in all forms, yet 60% of students from private schools go to a top third university, compared to just 30% of state school students and 5% of disadvantaged students, and many leading institutions and professions in the UK fail to reflect the diversity of today’s population.

We work with partner schools and universities to address this inequity and provide teachers and their students with the support that they need to help talented young people to access the education and opportunities that they deserve. Together, we identify the systemic challenges faced by state schools and work to create immediate impact for their students, while striving for lasting change.  

Our flagship Elephant Access Programme works with students in partner schools over a two-year period to support aspiration, attainment, and application to top third universities. Our aim is simple: to increase the awareness of the range of opportunities available to able young people and improve their chances of fulfilling their potential by providing them with opportunities and resources, advice and guidance that are not readily available to them, but which are taken for granted by their more privileged counterparts. This will result in a more diverse university and hence professional workforce, while assisting schools in the retention of Year 11 students to sixth form.

The Elephant Access programme includes a range of activities, all of which are designed to embed one or more of the focus essential skills steps: problem solving steps 4, 7 and 9 and aiming high steps 5, 7 and 10.  Activities include:

  • termly school visits from Elephant Group team members or partner universities, including in-school sessions such as goal setting and planning for the future; exploring different career and university options, evaluating opportunities and planning accordingly;
  • hub Launch and Spring Conferences: half-day events that include presentations from universities and corporations, focusing on aspiring to HE, career opportunities, applying to university and university life;
  • Summer School which includes a 2-day, funded residential at Exeter University with oracy and confidence workshops from Newton Europe;
  • a tailored webinar series;
  • Medicine and Oxbridge application, assessment and interview support including problem-solving skills to support situational interviews;

The programme gives students the chance to reflect on the essential skills before and after applying them; the programme focuses on two of the essential skills, with key steps from each supporting student reflection. Impact is evaluated via baseline and mid-year evaluations in Year 12, and focus groups and a leavers' surveys in Year 13.

Visit website