The pupil premium is a Government initiative introduced in 2011 which targets extra money at pupils from deprived backgrounds, who, according to research, underachieve compared to their non-deprived peers. The pupil premium grant is provided in order to support these pupils in reaching their potential. It is in addition to any funding the pupil may receive to support their special educational needs.
The Government has used the number of pupils entitled to free school meals as an indicator for deprivation, and have deployed a fixed amount of money to schools per pupil, based on the number of pupils currently registered for free school meals, or who have been at any point in the last 6 years (so called 'Ever 6' children). Children from service families ('Ever 5'), children looked after and children who have been adopted or subject to special guardianship orders are also eligible for additional funding.
The Government are not dictating how schools should spend this money, but are clear that they will need to employ strategies which they know will support their pupils to increase their attainment and ‘narrow the gap’. Schools will be accountable for narrowing the gap, and school performance tables have been reformed to include measures that show the attainment of pupils who receive the pupil premium compared with their peers.
At Hugh Sexey Church of England Middle School we use data to identify those children eligible for pupil premium funding who are underperforming, and put in place strategies to narrow the gap as regards attainment and progress. We do this in a manner that is designed to achieve maximum impact for the individual pupil. No effort is spared in understanding the needs of every child who is eligible to receive this additional funding.
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