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Report on how pupil premium is spent and its impact

Pupil premium is a funding stream, which the government introduced in an attempt to address some of the inequalities suffered by disadvantaged children.
In the financial year 2020-2021 the school received £131k.  This money was generated by the 104 children who were in receipt of Free School Meals (FSM) at the time of the school census 2014-2021, most attracting funding of £1300 (the figure is not an exact multiple of £1300 due to children leaving or joining mid-year) and Looked After Children (LAC) gaining funding of £1900.
At Goldstone, we have always invested heavily in narrowing the gap between children from disadvantaged families and those who are more affluent.  Our success in this has seen us invited to speak at conferences, which had this theme.  The pupil premium has allowed us to sustain some of the work, which we have done in the past and add to our portfolio of support.  Our pupil premium policy outlines how this money is spent in general terms.

Existing Programmes Supported by the Pupil Premium

The Sunflower Room- A place where our three Inclusion Mentors (IMs) work to support vulnerable children mainly with Behavioural Emotional and Social Difficulties (BESD).  The room is the base for our Inclusion Mentors who work with children on an individual basis and in groups.  They work with children who have mainly emotional needs although some of their work has been targeted at children with diagnosed difficulties such as ASCs and ADHD.  The work of our Inclusion Mentors is pivotal to the smooth running of the school and as a means of providing access to education for a group of very needy children.  The Inclusion Mentors run nurture groups, self-esteem groups and work as keyworkers for some of our very emotionally fragile children giving them a point of secure contact and a person with whom they are able to ‘download’ some of their anxieties and concerns.  The IMs also monitor behavioural patterns and trends.
The school had only two fixed-term exclusions last year and has never permanently excluded a child. The Sunflower Room and particularly the work of the Inclusion Mentors has enabled us to reach and maintain this situation even when we have  admitted  very needy children who have struggled to be included in other schools, and have either been excluded or ‘advised’ to move to prevent them from being excluded.  In the time since the Inclusion Mentors have been working the three year average has dropped to below one, despite having some very challenging children join the school and the school numbers increasing.
The majority of the children who use the Sunflower Room regularly are recipients of free school meals. There was a real danger that the level of support, which we were able to offer via the sunflower room, would need to be cut in light of reduced funding from the local authority. Pupil premium money, which has been put into this service, has enabled us to expand the provision to match our expanding school. This affects all children because, by supporting the children who have specific emotional needs, we are supporting all children’s learning in the classroom by creating a calm and effective learning environment.
The Sunflower Room costs £60,000 per year and 60% (£36,000) of this is funded by pupil premium.

Reading Recovery Teachers – Vicky Conry is an accredited reading recovery teacher. The impact of her work has been dramatic and the children who worked with her made significantly more progress than would have been expected. 62.5% of children made accelerated progress last year with 25% making good progress and the others being referred to other school remedial programmes. 75% of children who were on the Reading Recovery Programme were disadvantaged. £10,000 of Ms Conry’s salary is funded by pupil premium.

The Reading Centre- We initiated our reading centre before the pupil premium’s introduction but expended it afterwards. In the year 20/21, the reading centre could not operate as usual due to Covid 19. The team of four highly trained Teaching Assistants have been working within year group bubbles. They have been promoting reading with all children but have been particularly focussing on children who attract Pupil Premium funding. The cost of employing these very highly trained people is £65000 with 70% of this money coming from Pupil Premium.

Speech and Language Provision - The amount of support our children receive from various agencies associated with speech and language difficulties has dramatically decreased over the past few years. We have taken the bold decision to train two specialist Teaching Assistants to support children with speech and language needs. These two very capable and highly trained staff have made a real impact on the academic and social outcomes for a range of children. Again, pupil premium has allowed us to maintain this provision, funding £25,000 of the £45,000 it costs to keep this running.

Improving Attendance - We have used some pupil premium money to enable some children to attend breakfast, after school club and one of our holiday play schemes. This has had a positive effect on these individual children’s attendance. Children have had different levels of access to free places at different times. (Budget: £4,000).

Increased Teaching Assistant Time - Each of our 22 classes receives Teaching Assistant support. Part of the role of the Teaching Assistant is to ensure that children who are from disadvantaged backgrounds and who have low prior attainment make good progress. Approximately £1,500 of pupil premium money supports this in each class. This year a specific teaching assistant was employed just to work with children from the reception classes who attracted Pupil Premium funding.

Providing Access to School Activities and Residential Trips - Pupil Premium money is used to support individual pupils so that financial concerns are not barriers to their involvement in school life. We do this in two main ways: firstly by subsidising clubs to make them more affordable for all of our pupils (most of our clubs are free) and secondly by paying all or part of costs for pupils who are in need of support and receive pupil premium.
We also pay for music lessons and will help with equipment and on some occasions, transport to activities. We have used pupil premium money to support children in going on residential visits. Approximately £9000 is set aside for this from Pupil Premium. We have also purchased uniform, musical instruments, magazine subscriptions and occasionally offering transport. (Budget: £2000).

During the financial year 2021-2022, we aim to maintain these services, which benefit the whole school, but disproportionately those children who are from disadvantaged backgrounds.

We have slightly increased our out of class support and added a third inclusion mentor to our team so that children who need immediate help can receive it. This new proactive Inclusion Mentor will work largely with children from disadvantaged families.

Our continuing aim is to eradicate the attainment gap between those children who are in receipt of Pupil Premium and those who are not.  We do not see this as a simple short term academic fix we view the role of this support as providing emotional and character building support which will enable the children to narrow the ‘life experience  gap’, grow in confidence and therefore reach the heights which their ability affords not the lows which their circumstances might predict.



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