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Looking at the impact of SHINE's Saturday programme on pupils' development


SHINE (Support and Help in Education) is an educational charity that gives disadvantaged children the opportunity to acquire the skills and confidence they need to turn their potential into success at school and beyond. SHINE approached Pro Bono Economics to determine whether a full economic impact assessment could be undertaken for its SHINE on Saturday programme, based on the outcomes of a recent RCT (Randomised Controlled Trial).


Pro Bono Economics (PBE) matched SHINE with experienced economic consultant Claire Brinkman. Claire’s report provided detailed guidance on how to undertake a full economic impact assessment of SHINE’s Saturday programme, using historic data rather than the outcomes of the RCT, along with the results of a small pilot study.


The PBE study proposes that SHINE’s Saturday programme predominantly affects pupils’ non-cognitive skills and discusses the resulting economic benefits. According to the work of economist Jim Heckman, interventions which improve children’s non-cognitive skills, unlike those that simply target cognitive skills, are far more likely to have a lasting impact on academic attainment. Further benefits of improved non-cognitive skills include better chances of finding employment and receiving higher wages later in life.


Based on an initial, small pilot study, using data from one school, it is estimated that pupils who attend SHINE on Saturday will go on to achieve 1-2 additional GCSEs at A*-C grade on average. This could result in a gross improvement in economic productivity of around £6.3 million across all pupils from that particular school who had attended SHINE on Saturday. However, these are preliminary results only and a full impact assessment will interrogate data from more schools which have implemented SHINE’s Saturday school programme and estimate the economic impact net of all relevant costs.

Charity View

Fiona Spellman (Senior Programme Manager SHINE):

“Pro Bono Economics have been fantastic. Their approach to evaluation is both rigorous and practical, and our lead economist was excellent. We would thoroughly recommend them to any charity who want to better understand their economic impact.”

1st November 2017