Pupil Premium was introduced by the Government in April 2011. It is intended to address the underlying inequalities between children eligible for free school meals (FSM) and their peers by ensuring that funding to tackle disadvantage reaches the pupils who are most in need of it.
West London Free School is in the Hammersmith and Fulham borough. As at 31 March 2016, the school was eligible to receive Pupil Premium in respect of 37.6% of its pupils. Pupil premium is paid at the rate of £935 per eligible pupil. In the financial year ended 31 March 2016 the school received £201,394 in pupil premium funding.
The school also receives an additional grant for Year 7 children who did not achieve at least level 4 in reading and/or mathematics at the end of key stage 2. In the financial year 15/16 the school received £7500 of funding for this purpose.
Improvement in the attainment and progress of pupils is the primary objective of the school. The majority of school strategies are designed to achieve this. Pupil premium funding is used for specific initiatives to support the most disadvantaged pupils.
Pupil Premium funding, and the year 7 catch up grant, are the principal sources of funding for the initiatives below.
Major initiatives with individual impact analysis
- Use of learning mentors (£40,096); Three learning mentors worked closely with many disadvantaged children – providing a structured environment to develop key skills to succeed academically. The provision supported progress in all year groups and showed significantly positive affects for children who had regular access to a mentor. The provision will continue in 2016/17.
- Share of attendance officer salary (£27,391); This provision will be increased in 2016/17 to increase attendance rates for children of disadvantages backgrounds.
- Extracurricular academic support (£23,071); This includes SEN-support clubs, afterschool revision sessions and holiday revision days delivered by teachers. This provided important support for children who struggled to revise at home. This had an excellent impact on GCSE and end-of-year results and will be continued next year.
- Behaviour intervention (£20,915); Behaviour in lessons, and attitude towards learning improved significantly last year. Fewer PPI-eligible pupils missed homework deadlines or were sanctioned for poor behaviour behaviour as the year progressed. This provision will be continued in 2016/17.
- Use of learning support assistants (£19,188); Disadvantaged pupils with special educational needs were given priority access to a learning support assistant in lessons. However, the provision represented poor value for money. The funding for this intervention will be reduced in 2016/17, allowing more financial support for higher-impact provision.
- English intervention (£18,945); This involved additional English lessons during the school day for Year 11 pupils who were significantly underperforming in the subject. This led to high numbers of children making at least expected progress at GCSE English. The intervention will be expanded next year.
- Music provision (£16,167); Includes the music scholarship programme, renting of musical instruments and subsidised music lessons. Pupils from disadvantaged backgrounds were disproportionately involved in whole-school music events and those who took GCSE music made beyond expected progress. This intervention will be continued in 2016/17.
- Use of counsellor (£9,596); Continued for 2016/17.
- Contributions towards school trips (£9,503); Continued in 2016/17.
- GCSE Textbooks and revision guides (£7,258); Poor value for money. Discontinued for 2016/17.
- Rowing provision (£6,612); Provision discontinued for 2016/17.
- Exam leave intervention (£4,370); Continued for 2016/17.
- Fees for the gifted-and-talented programme (£1,869); Continued for 2016/17.
- Language intervention (£1,389); Discontinued for 2016/17.
- Uniform purchases (£663); Continued for 2016/17.
Pupil Impact on Achievement
The WLFS received its first set of GCSE results in the summer of 2016. With support from the above interventions, most disadvantaged pupils were entered for the English Baccalaureate (EBacc) – 66% at the WLFS compared to 25% nationally and 50% locally. The EBacc is a measure introduced by the Department for Education that encourages schools to enter pupils for a range of rigorous and academic qualifications. Our exceptionally high EBacc entry rate demonstrates our high expectations for pupils, regardless of their background.
On every measure, disadvantaged pupils at the WLFS performed far better than national and local averages. The Progress 8 for disadvantaged pupils was -0.07 (compared to -0.38 nationally and -0.14 locally), suggesting pupils are making expected progress. The average grade achieved by disadvantaged pupils was a C (Attainment 8 score of 51) compared to an average of a D nationally and locally. Furthermore, 14% of disadvantaged pupils achieved at least five A or A* grades. Almost a third (30%) of pupils eligible for the Pupil Premium achieved the EBacc (compared to 12% nationally and 22% locally) and 56% achieved at least a C grade at GCSE for maths and English (compared to 43% nationally and 55% locally). Most disadvantaged pupils made expected progress in maths (67%) and English (71%).