Research and Reports

Research and Reports

We have collated information on research and reports that may be of interest to our naval families below. If you have any questions or would like to raise a concern about your young person’s education, please contact us. Also see this page for a list of resources that may be of use.  

Armed Forces Covenant
The NFF in action

Every year the three Service Families Federations are invited to make their observations on the Armed Forces Covenant based on feedback received from you. Our submissions have highlighted areas which we believe are working well and other aspects that we believe need to be improved upon. Topics include: accommodation, education, health, spousal employment and more. You can read our observations from the past and current Armed Forces Covenant Annual Reports here. 

NFF Childcare Report 2021

We carried out an anonymous survey in 2020 to gather families’ feedback on childcare. We were delighted to receive an excellent respond rate from you. We collated your views into this report. Since the publication, we shared the report with our key stakeholders, including the MOD and RN/RM chain of command. Using the evidence you generously shared, we continue to advocate for our families on the childcare issues you identified and seek to inform existing and future policy (including the wraparound childcare policy).  

Service life
Celebrating Military Family
Celebrating Military Family – December 2022

The Children’s Commissioner has published her report ‘Celebrating Military Family‘, which is part of a wider Independent Family Review. It looks at how to make sure young people from the Armed Forces community receive the support and services to which they are entitled.

The NFF are delighted to report that your feedback has enabled us to share your lived experience with the research team to provide an overview of Service life.

We cannot communicate your views to key stakeholders without your input, please contact us.

‘Dropping in and out’: Social media and internet-based communication amongst Naval families during separation
‘Dropping in and out’: Social media and internet-based communication amongst Naval families during separation

Following on from the Naval Children’s Charity research in 2021, they commissioned further research into how children communicate with their parents when separated, either through deployment or circumstances, to help inform how the charity can collaborate and work in partnership to support them through these periods of separation. Access both reports here.

The Voice of Schools Survey Report
The Voice of Schools Survey Report 

Service children in state schools (SCISS) in 2021 published the results of their survey of schools supporting Service children. 461 schools responded, including schools with small numbers of Service children. The survey questionnaire listed seven previously documented challenges experienced by some Service children, their families, and/or the schools they attend. It asked respondents to indicate how much of a challenge these presented to their school. 


The Naval Families Federation welcomes this important contribution from schools that helps to evidence the needs of Service children and those supporting them. We will be working with the SCISS and other partners to address the issues raised. 


Supporting Service Children in Education (SSCE) Cymru is a Welsh Local Government Association programme. Since the programme began in 2014, SSCE Cymru has worked with schools, young people stakeholders to gather their views and experiences, building networks across Wales and raise awareness and understanding of the experiences of Service children.  

School survey

In 2019, SSCE Cymru invited all schools in Wales that have Service children enrolled to participate in a survey to find out more about their local communities. Here, you can access the findings. 

Listening to our Service children

In 2019/20, SSCE Cymru ran a number discussion groups in schools in Wales, to hear from Service children about their experiences of education in Wales. These findings were fed into the Year of the Service Child Voice project by the Service Children’s Progression Alliance (SCiP Alliance). Download the full project analysis. 

Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND)
DfE consultation on funding arrangement on SEND

In July 2019, the three Service Families Federations took the opportunity to submit a joint response to the Department for Education’s call for evidence: ‘Provision for children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities and for those who need additional provision: how the financial arrangements work’. 


We advocate on behalf of Royal Navy and Royal Marines families and we support the view that children’s education should not be disadvantaged by their parent’s Service.  In our submission we highlighted some of the key issues and challenges that could arise for Armed Forces children who have Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) and suggested a number of recommendations, based on evidence gathered by the Families Federations. Read the full report here. 

NFF SEND Survey 2022

In March 2022 the Government opened a consultation about the changes they intended to make to the SEND and alternative provision (AP) system in England. We set up an anonymous survey to consult our families about the challenges they face due to their Service commitments. This survey is now closed.

Thank you to all our families gave us your thoughts. The lived experiences you shared are invaluable and enabled us to champion your voices directly to government policy makers so that they can take your views into account. Below are some of the key points you raised with us:

Infographic - results from the NFF SEND Survey (2022)

Some proposals in the green paper would be welcomed by some families. These include:

  • a single national system;
  • greater investment in training;
  • more parent input;
  • earlier intervention.
Stay in the know

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We believe our children deserve the best start in life and should be supported to thrive as they progress through the education system and into their adult lives. Thank you again for your valued contributions.