Mentoring Network

3 people collaborating at a work station

Embedding mentoring across the Further Education and training sector allows people to flourish and organisations to thrive. 

At an individual level, mentoring empowers people to grow professionally, improve their confidence and boost their career motivations. Being a mentor or mentee also equips practitioners with the knowledge and skills to set them up for (or help continue) a long and successful career in FE.  

Did you know that mentoring is proven to support staff retention? At an organisation level, mentoring can turn an FE setting into a workspace that invites teachers to continue learning, growing and being their best selves. 

We care about providing people with a fruitful and inspiring learning experience, and we know that having access to happy, confident and knowledgeable teachers can be truly transformative for students.  

Some organisations will already be confident in managing mentoring provisions, whereas others may be in the early stages of mentoring or looking at kickstarting the process.  

Wherever you’re at, Cognition Learning Group’s Mentoring Network Grant may be able to support you.

What is a Mentoring Network Grant?

With funding from the Department for Education (DfE), we’re proud to be offering grants of up to £5,000 toward the development of mentoring networks.  

A mentoring network involves organisations coming together to share their mentoring experiences and learnings with others across the FE sector. The aim is to help the sector become more confident with managing mentoring provisions on a whole.  

These grants are an exciting opportunity to encourage collaboration and creative ideas amongst networks to help embed a culture of mentoring across FE.  

Take a look at these examples of activities you can undertake with the grant to support your FE providers and networks: 

  • Build a sustainable network that allows providers to share best practices and promote the benefits of mentoring with the wider sector 
  • Work with ‘Mentoring Alumni’ from our TMP professional development programme share evidence of best practice and continue their mentoring in a supportive peer group
    (Please note that this is open to alumni from previous phases of the programme before being delivered by Cognition Learning Group) 
  • Help providers from the same college group to join forces and adopt a consistent mentoring approach 
  • Host mentoring network events, conferences or seminars (face-to-face or virtual) 
  • Produce mentoring materials and resources to help manage mentoring provisions within FE environments 

At Cognition Learning Group, we’ll also be working with networks to explore more ideas to add to this list.  

For now, though, please note that any activities outside of what’s listed above will need to be agreed on a case-by-case basis with the DfE, so we ask that you get in touch with us if you’d like to discuss a proposal.  

Expression of Interest

Interested in applying for a Mentoring Network Grant? Please click here to complete our expression of interest form.

How do I apply for a Mentoring Network Grant?

Here’s a breakdown of the full application process: 

  1. First, you’ll need to complete our expression of interest form (see above). At this stage, we’ll check your organisation’s eligibility and ask you to provide a short description of what you’re hoping to undertake and achieve with the grant.
  2. We’ll review each expression of interest and, if your description aligns with the approved activities, we will invite you for a call to discuss your proposal in more detail.
  3. We consider your expression of interest and your suitability (based on our call). If we find you to be a suitable network, we’ll invite you to complete the formal application. This includes a completed budget template to detail how you’ll spend the grant.
  4. We will competitively assess all formal applications up until the application window closes. Then, we’ll communicate the outcome to all applicants.

When do applications open and close?


The application process opens on this website.

Providing you’ve completed your expression of interest and Cognition
Learning Group has invited you to complete a formal application, you
can go ahead and apply for the Mentoring Network Grant from this date!

Applications will close once all grant funding has been awarded. We encourage networks to apply early to avoid disappointment.

We’ll assess applications on a first come, first serve basis.

We will then communicate Application outcomes with successful/unsuccessful providers within 2 weeks of submission.


Successful applicants need to
deliver their Mentoring Network
Grant project between these dates.

Mentoring Network Information Documents

Below you’ll find all of the information you may need on the Mentoring Network Grants.  

We ask that you please read these documents thoroughly before submitting your expression of interest. If you have any questions that aren’t covered in the FAQs, you are welcome to email our Teacher Mentoring Team at