The Pupil Premium is a Government initiative that targets additional funding at pupils from deprived backgrounds. Research shows that pupils from deprived backgrounds underachieve compared to their peers. The Pupil Premium is provided in order to narrow the gap between these pupils.
The Government has used pupils entitled to Free School Meals as an indicator for deprivation, and have allocated a fixed amount of money to schools per pupil, based on the number of pupils registered for Free School Meals.
The Government is not instructing schools how they should spend this money; it is not ring-fenced and schools ‘are free to spend the pupil premium as they see fit’ (DfE 2011). However, the Government is clear that schools will need to employ the strategies that they know will support their pupils to increase their attainment, and ‘close the gap’.
At Northern Counties School we have chosen to use pupil premium funding to benefit our pupils in line with their own individual areas of need. There have been difficulties collecting the expected pupil premium payments from all local authorities.
In 2016-17 Northern Counties School plans to use pupil premium to help fund:
- Community visits to support autistic and deaf students’ independence and social skills
- A mobility and habilitation expert and Braille labelling to support blind students’ independence
- Creation of a ‘calm’ zone for a blind and autistic student
- Purchase of Eye Gaze software to support PMLD pupils’ communication
- Purchase of sensory equipment to support autistic students’ emotional regulation
- Introduction of the ‘Talkabout programme for teenagers to support behaviour
- A touch screen laptop for a student with multi-sensory impairment
In 2015-16 Northern Counties School used pupil premium received (£6,675 of the £8,110 expected) to help fund:
- Community visits to support autistic and deaf students’ communication and social skills
- An allotment project to develop physical, numeracy and planning skills
- Sensory equipment to support a blind pupil’s emotional regulation
- Hippotherapy to develop balance and functional movement
- Eye Gaze technology to develop communication skills for a student with PMLD
- Inclusion opportunities with Design Technology
Please click on the link below to look at the impact of pupil premium on pupil achievement.