The Pupil Premium Grant
What is it?
The Pupil Premium Grant is an additional source of funding which is allocated to schools based mainly on the number of children who are entitled to free school meals.
How much do we get?
For the current academic year, September 2019 to August 2020, this school will receive a total of approximately £110,000. (This is based on a predicted figure and the total may vary slightly due to fluctuations in pupil numbers).
The allocation is based on the number of qualifying children attending the school.
How can the grant be used?
Deprivation can often be an indicator of educational need and this is the case for some of the pupils attending our school.
There will be children qualifying for the grant for whom there is no educational need. However, these children may have more limited opportunities than some of their peers because of the financial circumstances of their families.
This means that the grant can essentially be spent in two ways. Firstly it can be used to help the school address any differences in attainment between children receiving the grant and the typical national level for that year group. It might also be used to enable children to participate in activities and opportunities that might not otherwise be available to them.
What are the needs of children at Martins Wood?
The main presenting difficulties of the children for whom we receive this funding fall into three categories; speech and language; attendance; and social and emotional needs which often present as poor behaviour in school. In deciding how to spend the Pupil Premium Grant we put strategies in place that will have an impact on these needs.
How do we use this funding?
We are required to report our Pupil Premium Grant spending on our website for the previous academic year along with our plans for spending the funds in the year ahead.
How was the grant used in 2018/19?
The total amount of funding available in 2018/19 was £116,000. It was spent as follows;
Additional teaching staff £40,,000
Additional non-teaching staff (including behaviour support) £66,000
Opportunities fund £5,000
Resources and training £1,500
We have much school based evidence to show the continuing impact that our use of the PPG is having. One of our strategies for narrowing the gap for our disadvantaged children is to use HLTAs to release class teachers to support the learning of disadvantaged pupils in their own class. Although many of our disadvantaged pupils in the 2019 Y6 SATs did not quite get to age related expectation (ARE) they all made very good progress from their starting points and many of them were "near misses," achieving a level just below the ARE. In the case of the 2019 cohort almost all of our pupils who received funding were also children with SEND.
A significant number of our disadvantaged pupils struggle with behaving appropriately at school. We are finding that this is an increasing trend. Our family support worker continues to help a number of them settle at the start of each day when they arrive at school bringing stresses from their home environment and are not fit to start focussing on school work. She has worked with many of the parents of these children to help them ensure they are meeting the needs of their children. It is hard to assess the impact of this work in raw data but we have a significant bank of anecdotal evidence demonstrating how the work of the FSW has helped children access their learning and prevented behaviour from having a wider negative impact within a number of classrooms. Many of the parents who have received support from our Family Support Worker have expressed their appreciation of the quality of support they have received. By enabling this group of children settle better at the start of the day and have a place to go to with a person to support them we are reducing the incidences of low level disruptive behaviour in our classrooms which can be distracting for our focussed learners.
A number of children benefitted from our Opportunities Fund which is money we keep for families experiencing financial difficulty to enable them to allow their children to attend our residential trip or other opportunities such as sporting or artistic endeavours.
In November 2017 Ofsted said of our use of the Pupil Premium;
"Leaders use additional pupil premium funding increasingly effectively. Disadvantaged pupils benefit from a range of strategies to improve attendance and make their learning enjoyable. Funding is also used to ensure that disadvantaged pupils have an equal opportunity to attend school visits, receive support to help fill gaps in their understanding and attend the vast number of extra-curricular activities available."
How will we use the grant in 2019/20?
All our evidence from reviewing the impact of our intervention strategies over the last few years supports the view that for learning needs the best interventions are those led by a qualified teacher. We intend to continue with our strategy of increasing the proportion of the Pupil Premium Grant that is used to generate teaching hours to support the disadvantaged. We are increasing the number of HTLAs in the school to release teachers for the equivalent of 30 minutes each day across the week to support their weaker learners.
We have also decided that we are in a position to use some of our capital grant to re-organise internal spaces to create a nurture room that can be used to support our more vulnerable learners and in particular those with challenging behaviour at KS2.
We intend to use our 2019/20 funding as follows:
Non-teaching staff (HLTAs to release teachers) £60,000
Behaviour support £40,000
Setting up a new nurture base £5000
The proportion we are spending on teaching would seem to be declining compared to the previous years. This is because we are moving towards a system of providing release for teachers to work in small groups with their disadvantaged pupils by having year based HLTAs providing teachers with the equivalent of 30 minutes/day release for this purpose.