Pupil Premium was introduced by the Department for Education (DfE) in 2011, as additional funding for pupils who receive Free School Meals and are Looked After Children. The Pupil Premium is additional funding to help schools close the attainment gap between pupils from low-income and other disadvantaged families, and their peers. If a pupil has been eligible for Free School Meals (FSM) at any point over the past 6 years or has been looked after for one day or more (Child Looked After), the school receives an amount per head within their budget. A provision is also made for pupils who have a parent in the armed services. The Government believes that the Pupil Premium, which is additional to main school funding, is the best way to address the current underlying inequalities between children eligible for free school meals (FSM) and their wealthier peers by ensuring that funding to tackle disadvantage pupils reaches the pupils who need it most. From September 2012 the Government has required schools to publish online information about how they have used the Pupil Premium. It is for schools to decide how the Pupil Premium, allocated to schools per FSM pupil, is spent, since they are best placed to assess what additional provision should be made for the individual pupils within their responsibility. In the 2020 – 2021 financial year, schools will receive £1345 for each primary aged child registered as eligible for free school meals at any point in the last six years. Schools also receive £2,300 for each looked after child at their school.
St James CE Primary School is a two form entry multicultural primary school. In autumn 2018, the school expanded with a brand new £3 million junior block and is now fully two form entry. It is a fully inclusive school with a clear approach to meeting the needs of all pupils, regardless of their individual needs. St James ensures that each child achieves their best and becomes a confident individual living a fulfilling life. St James CE Primary School has also been commissioned by Manchester Local Authority to have a specialist resourced mainstream provision unit for up to seven children who have a statement or Education, Health and care plan for Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) and/or Specific Language Impairments (SLI).
We serve an area of significant deprivation and our pupils come from a wide range of ethnic minority backgrounds (23 ethnic groups and 32 languages spoken). We have an increasing number of pupils from Eastern European and African countries arriving in school with little or no English – 30% of our pupils have English as an additional language – and no previous schooling.
We believe that there are several factors which impact on our pupil premium figure. Many of our families are new to the country and therefore not entitled to Free School Meals and other benefits. In addition it has become increasing difficult for families to claim eligibility for Free School Meals under new benefits criteria. Therefore in reality, the pupil premium figure is higher than the 60% that our data indicates.
St James CE Primary School is determined that all pupils are given the best possible chance to achieve their full potential through the highest standards of Quality First Teaching, focused support, curriculum enrichment, and pastoral care. We believe the additional provision delivered through the Pupil Premium funding should be available to all pupils within school who we know to be disadvantaged and vulnerable, irrespective of whether they are eligible for the funding. Indeed, it should be noted, that many of the pupils identified as requiring additional levels of support are not necessarily those who fulfil the FSM eligibility criteria. There is no expectation that all Pupil Premium funded pupils will receive identical support and the allocation of the budget for each pupil feeds into the whole school budget as opposed to being ring fenced. The school considers best ways to allocate Pupil Premium money annually following rigorous data analysis and the careful consideration of the needs of the pupils.
We have a clear, strategic 3-part model approach for Pupil Premium funding provision, which focuses on the following:
Our determined and committed leadership team and wider staff ensure that Pupil Premium funding and provision impacts achievement, attendance and pastoral care. This includes an identified governor having responsibility for Pupil Premium, the Deputy Head teacher and TLRs responsible for monitoring provision and outcomes, and the wider staff team to implement and evaluate provision. The Deputy Head teacher regularly evaluates pupil premium outcomes compared to other pupils in school to ensure the correct strategies and provision are in place.
For more information on how we have spent our Pupil Premium allocation, please click on the links below to download out annual report.