What is the Pupil Premium?
The pupil premium is additional funding given to schools to raise the attainment of disadvantaged pupils and close the gap between them and their non-disadvantaged peers. The funding is allocated to schools on the basis of the number of:
- Pupils in receipt of free school meals at any point in the last 6 years (Ever 6 FSM)
- Looked After Children (LAC, adopted of special guardianship)
- Pupils who have left care through adoption or another formal route such as a special guardianship order or child arrangement order
- Service children
This money is used to help disadvantaged pupils overcome any barriers to their learning and to ensure they reach their full potential.
What are the barriers to learning?
As a school, we avoid stereotyping our pupils who qualify for pupil premium funding and recognise that they are a diverse group who face different barriers or even none at all. However, some of our disadvantaged pupils experience:
- Lower attainment than their non-disadvantaged peers at Key Stage 1 and 2
- Less than expected progress in some subjects in Years 8, 9 and 10
- Lower attendance rates in the primary sector
- Lack of family finances, resulting in an inability to support the individual’s talents and skills
- Low aspirations
- Less support at home for self-study
- No quiet places at home to study
- Less developed oracy skills, particularly in formal situations
- A lack of revision material for Year 10 and Year 11 pupils
- Limited access to books, ICT and resources to support out of school learning
At The Whitstable School, we regularly track pupils’ data to identify any evidence of underachievement (not just in low attaining students), and respond to pupils’ individual needs rapidly. We aim to make creative, evidence-based decisions that are adapted throughout the academic year, and which include a wide range of interventions.
How will we spend the money?
The funding allows us to:
- Employ additional teachers allowing for smaller group sizes in English and Maths
- Embed a data tracking system that allows for targeted intervention in English, Maths and Science and ensures that all teachers know who their Pupil Premium students are
- Deliver training strategies for use in the classroom with SEND students and introduction of class profiles to ensure that all teaching staff know Ever6 FSM students and can effectively plan strategies for their attainment. This strategic approach ensures that the needs of each learner are being met within the classroom rather than relying solely on additional interventions
- Appoint Progress Leaders to enable every student access to an academic mentor. Alongside this intervention the introduction of learning conversations which track and discuss progress and are shared with parents/carers
- Improve and encourage good attendance through rewards
- Provide key stationery items to support pupil's learning in school and at home
- Purchase individual workbooks to support additional sessions in English and Maths
- Provide GCSE text books and additional resources to individual KS4 students
- Supply revision materials and study skills sessions for GCSE students
- Offer music lessons
- Provide digital technologies to support learning
- Deliver small group work and 1:1 sessions in English and Maths
- Provide early interventions by providing a summer school for students making the transfer from KS2 to KS3
- Create a family room for parents to meet in a more relaxed environment
- Provide funding for school trips
- Promote home/school liaison by offering informal ‘drop in’ sessions for parent/carers
- Run University trips to encourage and support student aspirations.
Are you claiming your entitlement to free school meals?
As parents, you need to know that registering for free school meals is important for two reasons. You will be reassured that your child has access to a healthy lunchtime meal as well as additional funding to support interventions targeted to raise your child’s achievement and aspirations.
To apply free school meals, parents must have one or more children aged four or over attending a local authority maintained school in Kent and be in receipt of one of the following:
- Income Support
- Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance
- Income-related Employment and Support Allowance
- Support under Part VI of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999
- Guaranteed element of State Pension Credit
- Child Tax Credit (provided you’re not also entitled to Working Tax Credit and have an annual gross income of no more than £16,190)
- Working Tax Credit run-on, paid for 4 weeks after you stop qualifying for Working Tax Credit
- Universal Credit - if you apply on or after 1 April 2018 your household income must be less than £7,400 a year (after tax and not including any benefits you get)
If you think you are eligible please register on the KCC website at:
www.kent.gov.uk/education-and-children/schools/free-school-meals. If you need help completing the form, don’t have access to the internet, or you would like to know more, please contact Mrs Murphy.
Pupil Premium Covid Statement
Due to the closure of schools on 23rd March 2020 because of Covid-19, implementation of the Pupil Premium Strategy 2019-20 was suspended. The Whitstable School directed its resources towards supporting eligible pupils to maintain their continuity of learning.
As no KS2 data will be available to benchmark standards for Year 7 pupils on entry in September 2020, the school is taking steps to ensure that meaningful data is generated during Term 1 to identify disadvantaged pupils who need additional support, so that reliable progress targets can be set. The same process is in place for other year groups. For this reason the school will publish its Pupil Premium Strategy for 2020-21 by the end of Term 2.