Partnership Grants

The Partnership Grants scheme funds schools and colleges up to £3,000 to work in partnership with STEM professionals from academia or industry to run an investigative STEM project.

Status: Open Deadline: 29 November 2024
  • Open date

  • 1st application deadline

  • 2nd application deadline

  • 3rd application deadline

  • Close date

The Partnership Grants scheme is an annual funding round. The application process opens in February each year and there are three possible submission deadlines across the year. The round closes after the final submission deadline which is at the end of November. 

Applications must be started by the school partner who can then invite the lead STEM partner to contribute to the form. The application form is made up of two stages, with eligibility checks carried out at the end of Stage 1. Both stages of the application must be submitted by one of the application deadlines to be considered. 

The Partnership Grant application process is completed through Flexi-Grant®, an online system used to administer all Royal Society grants. Applications cannot be accepted via email.

Notification of application decision

Due to the judging process and administration required to transfer funding to successful applicants there must be at least one term between submitting an application and the projects starting. Due to school closures over the summer holidays and administration required to transfer funds, projects starting in the autumn term can begin from October (please see the table below for more details).

Submission Deadline (Stage 1 and 2)

Notified about outcome of application

Term project can start from

End of April


Autumn term (October onwards)

End of June


Spring term (January onwards)

End of November


Summer term (April onwards)


If an application has been unsuccessful the school can work with the Schools Engagement team to re-write their application and submit again in a future funding round. 

Application support

The Royal Society appreciates that writing grant applications is often new to teachers and therefore support and guidance is provided throughout the application process to help ensure schools have the best possible chance to receive funding.

The Schools Engagement team can provide advice on finding STEM partners, project ideas etc. as well as reading draft applications and providing any required technical support for Flexi-Grant®. 

We have a number of support documents to help as you draft your application, all of which can be found in the downloads section of this page. Checklists for both Stage 1 and Stage 2 of the application form provide a comprehensive list of the information required and the key eligibility criteria. For Stage 2, an additional project planning guidance document is available to help you draft how your project will run, from the kick off meeting through to the end, in terms of investigative activity, STEM partner engagement and equipment requirements. You can send this draft document to the Schools Engagement team for feedback if desired, before filling in Stage 2 and submitting online.

Free online training sessions about the scheme are run for teachers and aim to give attendees a better understanding of the scheme and application process. Drop-in support sessions are also available, giving applicants an opportunity to ask specific questions about the scheme or receive feedback on draft applications.

The questions below are questions commonly asked by prospective applicants and the answers provide useful hints and tips for your application. Please also review the guidance regarding the partnership, eligibility and guidance to support SEND as you write your application. Don’t forget that draft applications can be sent to the Schools Engagement team for review before you submit.

Application FAQ's

Stage 1 of the application process requires simple, initial details about your project. Please download the Stage 1 checklist for more details. Submitted Stage 1 applications undergo short eligibility checks. If a project is not eligible it can be sent back to the applicant with guidance to edit and resubmit.

What is required at Stage 1?

  • School details, including the address, school type and level
  • Lead STEM partner details, including their organisation, job title, their highest level of education and simple details about why they are a suitable partner for the project
  • Simple project details, including the title, which must be a question, and a short descriptive summary of the project explaining what the students will be investigating

What is not required at Stage 1?

  • A full itemised budget, and project timeline are not required at Stage 1

Which partner is required to complete Stage 1?

  • The school partner must start the application and is required to submit Stage 1
  • The STEM partner can be invited to contribute to the form but it is not compulsory

Once you have successfully completed Stage 1 and passed the eligibility checks you will be sent a link to the Stage 2 application form. Please download the Stage 2 checklist for more details. Feedback can be provided on draft applications before they are submitted, however once Stage 2 applications have been submitted, they cannot be sent back to the applicant for edits.

What is required at Stage 2?

  • Which submission deadline you are aiming for, the term you plan to start the project and how many terms your project will run for
  • Details about your project plan, showing what the students will be doing at each stage, what equipment is needed and how the STEM partner will be involved. This project planning guidance document can help you prepare this section of the application
  • Information about how students will be selected for the project and how many will be involved
  • Details about any additional STEM partners who will be supporting your project
  • An itemised budget, with quotes provided for items over £200
  • The name and job title of a second school staff member who could take over as lead applicant if required
  • Information about the legacy of the project.

Which partner is required to complete Stage 2?

  • The school partner must start Stage 2 and will be sent a link to the form once the eligibility checks are complete
  • The STEM partner must be invited to complete a section of the form, confirming they support the application
  • The head teacher of the school must complete a section of the form confirming they support the application. If the lead school partner is the head teacher of the school, then this section must be completed by their deputy or another member of the senior leadership team

You must apply with a specific project rather than a series of experiments for a STEM club. Although within your project you can list more than 1 investigation or experiment, it is crucial that the investigations listed all link to each other and will help your students answer the project title. Please see the project plans for example project ideas and the sorts of investigations that can be undertaken under a specific project topic as well as other guidance.

You can view and download a range of project examples via our website. 

Please see the Example project titles (PDF) document for project topic inspiration drawn from those previously funded. 

Please see the project plans for example project ideas and guidance on the sorts of STEM partner engagement and investigations that can be undertaken and equipment that the grant could be used to purchase.

More information about previously funded projects can also be found on the case studies page

Yes there is space in Stage 2 to provide detail about the additional STEM partners you will be working with and how the different partners will be involved in the project. Working with multiple STEM partners will help to strengthen your application. Find more information about the STEM partner and their involvement in the project.

No you do not need to know which individual students will take part in the project but you will be asked to state the number of students and which year groups will be involved.

Yes, projects can involve the whole school and many successful school wide projects have been funded. When working on your application, make sure it is clear which aspects the different year groups will be involved in and how the different year groups’ work will feed into each other. 

Ideally your project should involve as many students as possible but it is appreciated that some projects can only involve a small number of students. In this case, make sure it is clear in your application why this is the case. It is also crucial that you carefully consider how you will select the students to take part and that this selection process is clearly explained. Ensure your selection process takes into consideration diversity, including the gender and ethnicity of students. As well as the selection of your students, make sure you include some detail about how the project and work will be shared with your wider school community. Can you share your project in assemblies or through the school newsletter etc?