Pupil Premium is additional funding given to school to address the current underlying inequalities between children eligible for free school meals (FSM) and their peers by ensuring that funding to tackle disadvantage reaches the pupils who need it most.
The Pupil Premium was introduced in April 2011 and is allocated to school to work with pupils who have been registered for free school meals at any point in the last six years.
Schools also receive funding for children who have been looked after continuously for more than six months, and children of service personnel.
The Government believes that it is for school to decide how the Pupil Premium Grant (PPG), allocated per eligible pupil, is spent, since they are best placed to assess what additional provision should be made for the individual pupils within their responsibility.
Schools are required to publish online information about how they have used the Premium. This is to ensure parents and others are made fully aware of the attainment of pupils covered by the Premium.
At St John’s Church of England Primary School we pride ourselves on having high aspirations and ambition for all pupils, regardless of their background. We operate a no excuse culture, setting children up to have the skills, knowledge and confidence to succeed.
We have high expectations for all of our pupils, and believe that with great teaching and a lot of love and care, every child can fulfil their potential. Some interventions are adopted on a whole school basis and are not restricted to FSM registered pupils only. However, the implementation of some intervention programmes would not be possible without the Pupil Premium. The majority of school strategies are targeted towards improvement in the attainment and progress of pupils.
A number of these key strategies are resourced from the school's main budget, including smaller, single age class sizes, some support staff and intervention programmes. We have allocated the additional Pupil Premium Funding to specific initiatives to support the most disadvantaged pupils. The key objective is to narrow the gap between pupil groups.
The achievement for our pupils is a focus for improvement. We are committed to doing everything we can to close this gap, particularly for our PPG children. Through the application of high quality teaching, structured programmes and provision we aim to eliminate barriers to learning and progress.
The use of targeted intervention is also important. Children who start with low attainment on entry will need to make accelerated progress in order to reach at least age-related expectations. It is also important that low attaining pupils grow in confidence and independence. Therefore quality social experiences, led by our Deputy Head Teacher, can have a significant impact. It must also be remembered that there can be children who, whilst eligible for FSM and Pupil Premium, are not low attaining but may not be maximising their full potential. We must therefore never confuse eligibility for Pupil Premium with low ability. We must focus on supporting all disadvantaged children to achieve to the highest levels.
Funding is allocated within the school budget by financial year. This budget enables the school to plan its intervention and support programme. Expenditure is therefore planned and implemented by academic year.
As an inclusive school, St John’s strongly believe that no pupil should be disadvantaged as a result of background and ensures that resources and support are also provided for children who may not necessarily be eligible for free school meals or looked after, but who have been identified by the school as being at an educational disadvantage compared to their peers. This support is funded out of the school’s main budget. Programmes involving children who are eligible for the grant as well as those who are not are often part-funded by Pupil Premium, proportional to the children they benefit.