The Pupil Premium was introduced by the government in April 2011, it is additional funding given to publicly funded schools in England to raise the attainment of disadvantaged pupils and to close the academic achievement gap between them and their peers.
In April 2014 the Conditions of Grant for the Pupil Premium for “Looked After Children” changed and is allocated to schools to work with pupils who have been registered for free school meals at any point in the last six years, children of service personnel and children who have been “looked after” continuously for one day or more.
Local authorities are responsible for deciding how to allocate Pupil Premium funding for “Looked After children” and make any payments to schools. Since April 2014 the local authority’s Virtual School Head Teacher has had control over the funding for “Looked After children”. They are responsible for allocating payments and monitoring the impact through each child’s Personal Education Plan (PEP).
Schools are able to decide how to use the funding, as they are best placed to assess what additional provision their pupils need and report this back to the Virtual School Head Teacher.
The Loddon School® is committed to supporting students who are eligible for and receive Pupil Premium by identifying each of the student’s individual needs and using the Pupil Premium to fund items and activities to meet these needs.
Currently there are twenty six “Looked After children” on roll, of these, twelve receive Pupil Premium funding. As each student has a personalised learning programme based on their individual needs their allocated funding is used to help develop their learning skills especially communication and leisure opportunities which help to enhance their quality of life and prepare them for adulthood.
We have also identified that for some students support would be beneficial for developing their leisure skills, to increase their inclusion in the community and extend their independence.
The students who receive Pupil Premium funding have been able to benefit from a range of different opportunities (which were not available to them previously). These have included the use of computer tablets for communication and educational software, Kindles to develop reading skills and a range of therapeutic equipment such as massage chairs and adapted tricycles to enhance relaxation. All six students receiving funding have made progress in their annual assessments.
Our aim is to continue to identify the individual needs of the students who qualify for Pupil Premium and to support their development, accessing the community and therapeutic programmes such as music therapy, osteopathy and extra physical activities that will increase their access to the community such as horse riding at a local stables, using climbing walls and attending activity clubs.
For more information on the Pupil Premium, please visit the Department of Education website.