Since 2001 Bridging the Gap has continued to grow, involving more schools, teachers, pupils and parents in many different activities. With over 10,000 pupils and 1,200 teachers involved since 2001, Bridging the Gap has achieved considerable success. Every school set clear goals for the project: they set out to develop pupils’ skills, engage their interests, increase their enjoyment of school and their motivation to succeed, and to involve parents and community in their children's education. Many schools mention their plans for continuing the work of the project and for integrating it with school development planning for the future.
Bridging the Gap has:
§ empowered schools to take action based on identifying the needs of their students
§ enabled schools to achieve significant success by setting clear and measurable goals for the project and tracking their results using performance data
§ promoted measurable improvements in literacy and language development, mathematics, science and information technology
§ improved students’ self-esteem and self-discipline through participation in the arts, with a positive impact on attainment across the curriculum
§ enhanced motivation and expectations among students, families, teachers
§ led to improvements in attendance, quality of homework, retention to senior cycle, uptake of science subjects, aspirations to study in higher education, career ambitions
§ helped schools to make more productive links with parents, families and their communities.
Bridging the Gap has supported six research studies investigating solutions to educational disadvantage, while the research capability of schools has also been improved by promoting action research in the classroom. Bridging the Gap has achieved a high level of publicity in local and national media, and has begun to have an impact on national policy for educational inclusion. It was mentioned as an example of good practice in an evaluation of access programmes published by the HEA in 2006.