What is the Pupil Premium?
This is funding given to schools for every child who is eligible for free school meals. The government provides this funding because there is a strong link to suggest that children’s achievement is impacted by financial disadvantage. Looked after children and those with parents in the armed forces are also entitled to support with funding.
How does the school access the money?
School completes a census at set points during the year, based on details provided by parents, indicating how many children have free school meals. The funding received is based on the number of eligible children.
How can I find out if my child is eligible for free school meals and the Pupil Premium?
If you feel that your child may be eligible for Free School Meals, it is important to register for their entitlement as soon as possible. The school office assists every family in applying for funding as soon as your child joins our school. Mrs Douglas is also able to provide all the necessary information and will help you to complete the form. She is available on the playground before and after school each day. .
If your child is currently in Reception, Year 1 or Year 2 and having a school meal through the government's Universal Free School Meals Entitlement, it is still important to register for the Free School Meals/Pupil Premium benefit if you think your child may be eligible. For more information about eligibility or how to apply please visit the Lancashire County Council website or use the link below.
Can my child still benefit from the Pupil Premium even if they are on packed lunches?
If your family is eligible for free school meals but your child chooses to have packed lunches, school will still receive the Pupil Premium funding to support your child.
Will my child lose the Pupil Premium funding if they stop having free school meals?
No, the school continues to receive the funding for 6 years. This is called EVER6 funding. If your child moves onto high school in that time, the high school would continue to receive the funding so that your child can access additional support and enrichment.
What is the Pupil Premium spent on?
Schools have the freedom to decide what the funding is spent on as different schools will identify different areas of focus to support the children in their care. The only criterion is that it impacts upon the achievement of qualifying children and enables them to succeed in the same way as other children. Ofsted will check on the impact of the funding on the progress of eligible children.
How does St. Joseph’s Primary spend Pupil Premium funding?
The details of how, and on what the Pupil Premium funding has been spent on each year, can be found in our pupil premium strategy for each academic year:
Pupil Premium Strategy Statement 2022-23
SUMMARY: School remained open for vulnerable pupils and the children of key workers, throughout the national lockdowns. Support for our families was our highest priority during this difficult time. This included access to technology with the provision of iPads and computers so that all our children could access learning. We provided support with food, clothing, white goods, help with birthday gifts and resources for our families. Home visits, daily phone calls and live teaching were valuable ways to support our families and prevent them from feeling isolated.
Before lockdown in March 2020, our data showed that the vast majority of children were on track to meet the targets set and by March, had made good progress, particularly in reading, writing and mathematics, from their starting points in September.
Upon the wider reopening of schools, we noted that our children were affected most significantly in their in their well-being, social skills and personal development. Our children have been nurtured and supported by our Family Support Worker, Emotional Literacy Support Assistants and mental health champions. Additional interventions included 1:1 and small group support in Reading, Phonics, Writing and Mathematics. However, we also developed a bespoke curriculum to give our children opportunities to talk, socialise, build resilience and learn outdoors. Our Building the Kingdom curriculum brings together the whole community to develop children's passion for learning and unique gifts and talents. Our children developed in confidence, resilience and independence as they flourished in their chosen areas of learning. All of our children have opportunities to engage in aspects of learning that would not usually be accessible to them. Other areas of well-being support have been:
Support with shopping and food parcels
Nurture groups via Zoom (or face to face) to support children with anxiety, bereavement, emotional needs.
Referrals made to CAMHS
Access day for all pupils for teachers to check emotional well-being.
Phone calls and home visits to children and families
Online transition for Y6 children starting high school
ICT equipment provided
Provision of resources
Access to Child and Family Well-being service-virtual support.
How has St Joseph's allocated Pupil Premium Funding to enable pupils to catch up following the pandemic?
When school reopened following the pandemic, we noticed that our children had been hugely affected by having little interaction with other children and adults. We had a great deal to do in helping them to socialise, play and communicate with one another effectively. With swimming pools, leisure centres and halls closed, they had missed out on the clubs, groups and extra-curricular enrichment that they loved, that enabled them to develop their talents and hone their unique skills. We developed our unique Building the Kingdom curriculum to give them all that back…and more.
Read more about it on our curriculum pages!
We also trained our own academic mentors to deliver 1:1 and small group sessions for pupils with gaps in learning. We took on additional specialist staff to ensure rapid catch up for our children. We delivered mindfulness, yoga and group talk sessions to ease anxiety and develop emotional literacy. We focused on healthy bodies with physical activity, cookery lessons and so much more to help our children to love learning and relieve the worries that the previous two years had exacerbated.
Read more about how we tailored learning in our Pupil Premium Strategy.