Best Practice

Nine factors that influence ‘belonging’ in school

Nurturing a sense of belonging at school can have a considerable impact on social and academic outcomes. Martha Evans explores nine factors that influence student belonging
Image: Adobe Stock -

Research has shown that just three-fifths of students feel a sense of belonging at school while 15-year-olds in the UK report some of the lowest levels of life satisfaction across the OECD countries (Ingram et al, 2023).

This matters because evidence increasingly demonstrates that children and young people’s sense of belonging plays a decisive role in shaping their social, emotional, and mental health outcomes and academic performance (Allen et al, 2020).

At the National Children’s Bureau, we have worked with researchers at Goldsmiths, University of London, to understand what influences students’ sense of belonging in school. Below are some of the issues that are starting to emerge.

Register now, read forever

Thank you for visiting SecEd and reading some of our content for professionals in secondary education. Register now for free to get unlimited access to all content.

What's included:

  • Unlimited access to news, best practice articles and podcast

  • New content and e-bulletins delivered straight to your inbox every Monday and Thursday


Already have an account? Sign in here