Impact report 2021/22



  • 9 external Catering Supervisors 
  • 14 Internal promotions to Catering Supervisor, Assistant Business Manager 
  • 83 Kitchen Assistants


  • 292 of our members of staff completed Food Safety Level 2 training over the 2021-2022 period.  

 New contract 

  • Won two new contacts

Food – We have used  

  • 76,826 – Litres Milk
  • 26,069 – Cucumbers
  • 24553 kgs Cheese
  • 17554 Melons

Christmas is our busiest time of the year 

  • We used a staggering 2 ton of fresh turkey  
  • 640KG chipolata sausages 

In June 2022 Edsential collaborated with all catered schools and took part in celebrating the Queens Platinum Jubilee with various union jack themed goods and events. As always the catering staff went above and beyond to provide the best possible service to the children and young people in our schools. Special events such as this create a great atmosphere for all children to take part in and we can’t wait for the many more to come.  

Edsential Catering I believe are an organisation who will always listen, respond to feedback and work hard to create exactly what our school community wants from a healthy nutritious lunch.  They understand the pressures of school, the quality of food required and the need for flexibility when catering for such varied needs within our school.  Any issues or concerns are dealt with appropriately and the menus created meet the requirements of what our children enjoy most within a realistic budget and nutrition guidelines.  

I would recommend them highly! 

Dee Point Primary 


Helen Friend: Executive Headteacher of Bishop Wilson Primary School and Christ Church C of E Primary School:

“The thing that I really like about Edsential is the team. The team that support us as a school are fantastic. They communicate really well with us, they listen to us and we can always work through any problems or any concerns. Jo has been fantastic all of the way through, we couldn’t want a better area manager, she works with us, she will drop in, she will check on food quality, she will always make sure that the school and the children are happy.”


Matthew Vickers: Business Manager of Helsby High School

“From the ingredients, the menu choices and the food that we offer – it’s very important for our school to promote healthy eating, that’s really key for us. Edsential consider students’ dietary requirements – so we have a vegan and vegetarian option available as well as ensuring diabetic and other food needs are catered for.”

Melissa Kendrick Headteacher, Broughton Primary School, Flintshire

“The professionalism and coordination of every member of the
Edsential team has ensured the transition into the Broughton kitchen
has been seamless. The children and staff literally drool at the
presentation and quality of the meals prepared – the roast dinner and
meat is just like you’d cook at home and the fresh fruit platters are
delicious. It’s great to hear the children talk about their meal choices
and most importantly clear their plates!”


In 2022/2023 we are working towards improving school meal numbers in all our catered schools. We are working alongside the local council to ensure, in particular, that parents of young people who are entitled to free school meals are aware of their eligibility and their child is having the meal. With the cost-of-living crisis on everyone’s minds, it is so important to us to ensure as many children are having the free school meal they are entitled to. 










  • 23,521 bed nights residential visits took place at Conway Centres
  • 518 children were supported with an exam support course

Conway Centres: Tattenhall opened a brand new accommodation facility, meaning we can welcome more children and young people for a residential experience!

“Thank you for Art GCSE weekend that we attended last week. It was brilliant and students thoroughly enjoyed the sessions and weekend. We were very impressed with the workshops and staff at the centre.” – Rainford High School
“Great instructors, challenging sessions for students and pitched at the right level for our year 8 students” – King’s Leadership Academy

From Archery to Mega Stand-Up Paddle boarding – we have many brand new activities available at our centres for children and young people to enjoy. Find out more about the activities available at Conway Centres.
We have created ready-made programmes focused on the curriculum – making it easier than ever for schools to find their perfect residential!


  • Edsential Musical Routes has worked with 243 schools to support or deliver music education programmes and activities. That’s more than 80% of schools across The Wirral and Cheshire West & Chester.
  • Throughout the last academic year 4,583 students received Whole Class Ensemble Tuition with 4,199 having their first experience of learning to play an instrument free of charge in First Access programmes fully funded by DFE /Arts Council England.  
  • Edsential Musical Routes also supported 198 schools with delivering Singing via curriculum teaching, teacher training and other vocal projects.   

Started in 2021 Hidden Histories is a creative composition project with Manchester Camerata that we funded. The project explores composers who’ve been overlooked due to their gender, skin colour, or sexuality, and draws inspiration from their music in order to create brand new music.

“We are fortunate enough to have guitar, keyboard and percussion tuition within our school. The tutors are fantastic, knowledgeable and passionate. They allow our students to gain a sense of pride and achievement through their high-quality teaching and they always strive to challenge each of our young musicians as much as possible. They are sensitive to the SEND profiles of our students and consistently work to get the best out of them all. Students look forward to their music lessons and are extremely keen to tell us all about them once they have attended their weekly slot. Our music students are happy, proud and enthusiastic about the subject and this has definitely been encouraged by the tutors that we have as part of our school community. The impact that the music tuition has upon our school is hugely positive.” Oaklands School, Winsford. 

We are aiming to increase engagement with secondary schools and post 16 colleges.

Increase training for the workforce

Incentivise music tutors to maintain high quality and to complete tasks and help with recruitment of pupils. 

We aim to develop a culture of Inclusion throughout the music education hub. 


  • Provided a cleaning service to over 50 schools and other organizations. 
  • We have invested over £5,000 into state-of-the-art cleaning equipment to improve cleaning services across 53 organizations. 
  • During the global pandemic, our cleaning service worked additional hours and payed particular attention to touch points to reduce the spread of COVID 19
  • We also received 165 cleaning audits across 2021, with an average score of 92% 
  • We have eliminated 100% of accidents in 2021. 

During the global pandemic, we continued to receive positive feedback from our contractors highlighting the growth and the extremely high standards our cleaning staff maintain across 53 organisations. 

We have widely improved our Health and Safety provision across the service area reducing accidents by 100% across 2021. Additionally, we were also able to improve our overall cleaning standards from 2020 to 2021, as we achieved an 8% increase in our cleaning audits. 

Upton heath C of E Primary School, Chester: 

“I would like to thank you and your team for all your help and understanding, and for the way you worked with me so quickly to reduce our cleaning costs. We are under significant financial
pressures at the moment, your support is very much appreciated.” 

Headteacher, University of Chester Academy (Northwich): 

“Thank you for everything you do on a daily basis to ensure that our learning environment is of the highest standard.” 

Coming soon!

Holiday Activities with Food Programme

  • 167 Providers
  • We provided 122,789 meals to children and their families during HAF 2021
  • Benefitting a total of 28,499 children and young people.

HAF 2021 funding was paid directly to Local Authorities and the need to apply for a HAF Grant was removed.

For 2021 Edsential CiC, continued to provide HAF coordination on behalf of Wirral, Cheshire West and Chester and Halton Local Authorities. As part of Edsential HAF development for 2021 and in response to feedback from HAF Providers, we introduced a ‘Provider Forum’ for all providers, schools and those who can offer a unique and exciting enrichment activity that would enhance HAF Clubs.  

Due to an amazing response from our providers – with over 100 attending meetings online, we are now going to hold our first face-to-face Forum at Dee Point Primary School

Great thank you so much honestly it was a truly wonderful and magical day and made all the better by having wonderful staff who went above and beyond well done to you all and thanks again for making it possible for myself and my Granddaughter to be able to go somewhere like that

Grandparent, attending ‘Neo Community’ – Winter 2021

We aim to increase the numbers of schools engaging in the programme, with a particular focus on Secondary Schools.

We aim to focus in on the quality of food provision offered by providers. Food quality is a national concern for HAF, and we are undertaking a Pilot project in both Wirral and Cheshire West and Chester which will encourage organisations to cook good quality nutritious meals.


  • 1661 meetings   
  • 92 admission appeal hearings  
  • 138 schools and 1290 governors meetings clerked in schools across Cheshire West & Chester, Halton and Wirral 
  • 98 new schools signed up to Governor Hub   
  • 87 Schools attended Governor Training with 1045 attendees  
  • 116 New ECT registrations over 58 schools

The Governance team has been involved in supporting schools with a number of complaints and grievances which have increased in number over the last twelve months, underlining the challenges that schools are facing.  We have seen an increase in the number of pupil in year admission appeal hearings. The use of online technologies has ensured that in virtually all cases we have been able to ensure that parents are able to attend the appeal hearing and put their case forward as to why they think their child should be admitted to a school.  In all these cases the team have been conscientious and gone over and above in delivering a professional service to support schools, their children and their families deal with sensitive and difficult issues. 

Alison was so lovely and knowledgeable about all things governance. I’m feeling much more confident about my role now. 

Alison was very knowledgeable and clearly very experienced, she did a good job of reassuring us as new governors without being over the top or patronising. Her expertise was really valued. 

Coming soon!

Learning Outside the Classroom

  • 528,502 delivery days taking place beyond the school gates 
  • 539 residentials taking place across the four Local Authorities. 
  • 19430 visits 

This year we wanted to improve our outdoor education for our older children by offering something slightly different than Forest School. So, we asked Edsential to provide an Outdoor Education that would enhance other areas of the curriculum in KS2, so that we could show progression throughout our Outdoor Learning provision.  We have had Motte and Bailey castles built, we have had First Aid sessions taught, which included learning how to bandage arms, the recovery position, checking for breathing and obstructions.

Our all-time favourite was when the children applied Islamic patterns onto wooden discs that they cut first and also onto clay.

“This year we wanted to improve our outdoor education for our older children by offering something slightly different than Forest School. Our children have Woodland classroom daily in our Early Years and Forest school weekly in KS1 so we asked Edsential to provide an Outdoor Education that would enhance other areas of the curriculum in KS2, so that we could show progression throughout our Outdoor Learning provision. We have been really pleased with the service that has been provided. Jon has liaised with class teachers to plan his sessions at the start of each half term. Having the same person each week has meant that Jon has felt like part of our staff team. He has been available to support us when thinking about teaching other sessions outdoors and when planning educational visits. It has been so well received we are booking for a full year of LOtC for next year for both Shocklach and Tushingham Primary school”

– Shocklach and Tushingham Primary School

Covid -19 had significant impact on school visits and off site visits still posed at challenge through 2021-22, however one positive impact has been the increase of taking Learning Outside the Classroom and utilising school grounds giving young people fresh air and access to open spaces. We are looking forward to providing more outdoor environment activities which give young people a deeper understanding and direct application of learning.

Duke of Edinburgh Award

2021/2o22 saw 1,876 children start their DofE Award with Edsential

With many young people completing their award…

  • Bronze – 219
  • Silver 62
  • Gold – 20
  • Total – 30

Throughout the pandemic, Archers Brook School continued on their Duke of Edinburgh Award Journey. In June 2021, Edsential were kindly invited to see the pupils at presented with their Bronze award.

Coming soon!

Coming soon!

Physical and Mental Health & Wellbeing

  • Edsential supported over 90 teachers this academic year from local Primary Schools across Wirral, Cheshire West and Halton to improve the quality of teaching within PE through our Curriculum Support Programme alone. 
  • 100% of teachers reported an increase in confidence with teaching PE: 
    • Average self-reported score out of 5 was 2.68 before the programme. 
    • Average self-reported score out of 5 was 4.48 following the programme. 
  • With over 30 schools now subscribed, the Edsential PE Scheme of Work is supporting more than 400 teachers to deliver high-quality PE lessons each week.
  • Over 600 children each week taught through our PE PPA Cover – that’s over 700 hours of Curriculum PE lessons across the year. 
  • 97% of children made progress across all 7 fundamental skills when taking part in the Edsential ‘Fundamentals’ Programme. 

Edsential PlayMaker Award Programme 

Over the last 12 months, we have helped to train over 140 young leaders within Primary schools from across the Wirral. 

100% of PE subject Leaders said that activity levels of all children at break times had increased following the Play Maker training. 

“Diane did a great job with the children in our school, some of them have really come out of their shell. It has been lovely to see their confidence grow as the weeks progress.” – PE Subject Leader, Cathcart Primary 

“I have been able to gain a deeper understanding about the structure of dance lessons and have been inspired to expand this further.” – Teacher, Hillside Primary School 

Excellent high-quality delivery and CPD opportunity. The modelling of skills and teaching through a gymnastics unit has reassured us we are on the right track with our teaching. Thank you for your hard work and efforts.” Teacher, St Bridget’s C of E Primary School

The support I’ve received through these sessions will, not only support me when teaching fundamental games in the future, but also in other areas of PE. I’ve thoroughly enjoyed the training and the children have too.” – Teacher, Millfield’s C of E Primary School

Big push to increase subscriptions of our online Scheme of Work. We have been developed new conte with schools over the past 6 months including: NEW Knowledge Organisers, Equality/Diversity/Inclusion plans and a new assessment system. 

Continue to develop partners and new customers outside traditional areas including new schools in Liverpool and work with LA services and special schools. 

 Explore funding opportunities, particularly in swimming, to support schools in making more impact. 

 Support the development of robust PE Curriculum in response to Ofsted Review, including supporting schools in preparing for Depp Dives. 








  • Over 90 schools used our School Swimming Service. 
  • Over 5,800 children in Years 2-6 have taken part in swimming lessons co-ordinated by us. 
  • More than 4,000 transport journeys to and from the pool completed. 
  • Nearly 1400 children have reached National Curriculum level so far this year, a number expected to rise to over 2000 by the end of summer term. 

Coming soon!

Coming soon!

Coming soon!


  • Over 800 pupils engaged in Edsential Cultural learning through creative and performing arts activities.
  • 12 art forms were delivered to our schools – 1:1 Art Therapy, African Drumming, Beatboxing, Bollywood Dancing, Capoeira, Ceramics, Felt-making, Fine art, Paper crafting, Songwriting, Traditional Indian Dance and Willow weaving.
  • We were invited to and contributed to 3 All-Party Parlimentary Group Inquiry Sessions for Northern Culture.

Edsential’s Artists and Authors programme is an exciting opportunity to work flexibly with a creative practitioner to enrich curriculum delivery. Faith Bebbington, one of our visual artists who works with our schools to create 3D art linked to the national curriculum recently created stunning life size figure sculptures exploring Diversity and Inclusion in primary art education with young artists in Year 6 at Cambridge Road Primary School, Ellesmere Port. Each figure relates to concepts about diversity and inclusion: Disability, Gender, Race, Religion & Sexuality. 

Drama GCSE Residential  

“It is simply the best CPD my colleagues and I have all year – and much of our teaching this week has had a ‘Menai twist’. The pupils obviously have come on leaps and bounds too.” St Gregory’s High, Helen Chappel Teacher 

– Year 4, Acresfield Academy, Upton. 

“I enjoyed creating sculpture people with Faith because they were made from rubbish like newspaper and crisp packets. I thought it was epic, amazing, fun although it was challenging at times. I couldn’t believe you could make art from rubbish.”  

“In the lesson we had so much fun putting the messy glitter and spreading the gluey glue onto our mask. It felt so fun because I was really free.” 

Edsential’s Artists and Authors programme is an exciting opportunity to work flexibly with a creative practitioner to enrich curriculum delivery. Faith Bebbington, one of our visual artists who works with our schools to create 3D art linked to the national curriculum recently created stunning life size figure sculptures exploring Diversity and Inclusion in primary art education with young artists in Year 6 at Cambridge Road Primary School, Ellesmere Port. Each figure relates to concepts about diversity and inclusion: Disability, Gender, Race, Religion & Sexuality. 

Business Support

  • In 2021/22 over 10,000 phone call queries were answered 
  • 76,180 new users visited the Edsential website 
  • 3 business support staff members completed their Masters qualification thanks to support from Edsential
    58 staff were internally promoted
    7 staff members completed their apprenticeship management training with an Edsential placement 
  • 639 Edsential staff have completed online Safeguarding training 
  • 20 managers completed Designated Safeguarding Lead Training 
  • 14 managers completed Safer Recruitment training through the NSPCC 

In 2022 Edsential formed its employee Mental Health and Wellbeing taskforce. Edsential is committed to providing a healthy working environment and continuous improvement to the quality of lives for all staff. This wellbeing strategy aims to support Edsential’s core values of changing and improving childrens’ lives with the recognition that our staff are at the heart of our purpose.  

Coming soon!

Coming soon!