Last reviewed on 2 November 2021
School types: All · School phases: Primary
Ref: 2372

Use our guide to help you navigate the huge number of primary intervention strategies that are out there. Understand what makes a good intervention, and how best to implement them in your school.

What makes an intervention more likely to succeed?

Effective literacy and mathematics interventions have a number of similar characteristics, according to research by the Education Endowment Foundation (EEF). 

The EEF has studied a wide range of interventions for both KS1 and KS2, and found that good interventions tend to:

Be brief and regular

Ideally, intervention sessions should:

  • Last between 15 to 45 minutes
  • Happen 3 to 5 times per week
  • Last between 6 to 20 weeks

Intervention sessions need to be carefully timetabled to make sure they take place regularly. 

Be aware of "intervention fatigue" though, for both pupils and staff. Interventions don't always need to be very time-consuming or intensive – focus on quality over quantity.

Be carried out by highly trained staff Trained staff should take the lead on interventions, especially for pupils who need the most help and support. Give training to internal members of staff, such as teachers and teaching assistants (TAs), or bring in qualified tutors. According to the EEF,