Researching the challenges faced by out-of-school migrant girls

Many recently-arrived migrant girls struggle to access and maintain a place in mainstream education. 

WONDER Foundation is currently worked on a research project concerning the challenges faced by out-of-school migrant girls across England.

Many recently-arrived migrant secondary school aged girls across the country seem to be facing challenges accessing and maintaining a place in mainstream education. However, the scale of the problem remains unknown. 

The main goal of the research project was to document the challenges that recently-arrived migrant secondary school aged girls face, in order to map out best practices or showcase initiatives that have attempted to bridge this gap in service provision. The report will be used as a robust evidence base for strategic advocacy at the local and national level. Read the report today.

Drawing from our work with the Baytree Centre

WONDER’s partner, the Baytree Centre, founded the Into School programme in 2008 to support migrant girls between the ages of 14 and 18 who had recently arrived in the UK, and were not enrolled in school.

There are many reasons that girls attend the Into School programme. They are often unlikely to be offered a place in school, because they are not expected to achieve good GCSEs. They may not have the English skills to go straight into school with others their age, or may have missed years of education while trying to reach the UK.

However, not being able to access education negatively affects their wellbeing. Out of school, girls are more likely to feel isolated, as they may not have others their age to speak to. They are at a greater risk of joining gangs or facing sexual exploitation, and will likely struggle to apply to university or find a decent job.

Fourteen years later the programme is still much needed and underfunded, and many young people across the country need access to similar support: ESOL, cultural activities, mentoring and help applying to mainstream education.   

If you are group or individual working with migrant girls in this area and would like to learn more, get in touch at

Learn more about the Into School programme:

How can you support refugee and migrant girls?

The best way to support refugee and migrant girls is to make a donation. Your gift can help fund programmes like Into School, and give girls the resources they need to thrive. 

Read our new report