Our teams of City Year volunteer mentors give their time and energy to support your school in creating an enjoyable yet hardworking environment, while developing meaningful relationships with children who need extra help to do well.

There are many advantages of having our volunteer mentors in your school:

  • Presence – they will be around from first thing in the morning until after the last extra-curricular club after school, from Monday to Thursday.
  • Full integration – they will become an indispensable part of your staff team, while retaining their identity as volunteer role models.
  • Connections – their youth means they can relate well to pupils and form solid, trustworthy relationships that complement those of teachers and other permanent members of staff.

Where possible, we’ll work with any state-funded school that meets these criteria:

  • 30% of your school’s pupils qualify for the pupil premium payment.
  • Your school’s senior leaders are looking for new ways to help them achieve the school’s priorities.
  • The whole school community, from governors and senior leaders to teachers, parents and pupils, embraces the City Year culture and supports our wider social mission.
  • Your school can make a fixed financial contribution towards City Year UK’s costs. Costs are dependent on the numbers of volunteers in the team, which in turn depends on the size of the school.

Things to consider:

  • Volunteer mentors will not serve as a replacement for paid staff positions. Our team is designed to offer support so you can deliver elements of your school improvement plan better or to more pupils.
  • The smallest team we can deploy in a school comprises at least six volunteer mentors, so a City Year UK partnership is not normally suitable for schools with fewer than 300 pupils.
  • City Year UK has a menu of year-long core activities that our volunteer mentors are trained to lead and deliver, centred on coaching support for ‘focus-list’ pupils. The teaching and learning content of our work with children is always designed and controlled by the school – we’ll be there to help you deliver it.
  • There are currently more schools interested in partnering with City Year UK than there are teams of volunteer mentors available, but we aim to have new teams available soon in Greater London, West Midlands and Greater Manchester. So if you’re based in any of these areas and are interested in working with us, please let us know.

Find out more

If you’d like to know more about how your school can partner with us please call 0207 014 2680 or email schools@cityyear.org.uk.

You can also read some testimonials from our current partner schools or our Guide for Schools.


City Year UK prides itself on running and recommending only proven evidence-based strategies and approaches. To help ensure that our service is always of the highest quality and has the greatest impact we work with a council of education advisors who endorse our model and help us to develop and update it.

Find out more about our Education Advisor Council members.