Pupil Premium

Orchard Mead Academy has a Pupil Premium strategy which aims to overcome the barriers to educational achievement faced by our pupils. The effectiveness of this strategy will be continually evaluated, and a report of the effectiveness of the previous year’s spending will be published here each year.

What is the Pupil Premium?

The pupil premium is additional funding for schools in England. It is designed to help disadvantaged pupils of all abilities perform better, and close the gap between them and their peers. The Pupil Premium was introduced in April 2011. It is allocated to:

  • Students who currently receive the Free School Meal allowance (FSM)
  • Students who have received the FSM allowance in the last six years
  • Students whose parents currently serve in the military
  • Students who are currently in Local Authority Care

Schools are accountable for how they use Pupil Premium funding to support low-income families and other target groups. Measures have been included in the performance tables that show achievement of students who are eligible for the Pupil Premium.

How much is the Pupil Premium worth?

Secondary schools receive £935 funding for each pupil registered as eligible for free school meals (FSM) at any point in the last 6 years.

Orchard Mead Academy Pupil Premium Context

36% of students currently on-roll at Orchard Mead Academy are eligible for Pupil Premium funding. The school budgets to receive £407,715 Pupil Premium Funding for the year 2019/20. The funds are spent to narrow the achievement gap between Pupil Premium students and the rest of the school cohort. This is done by enhancing provision, providing support and ensuring that Pupil Premium students have full access to the curriculum and any barriers to their achievement are removed.

In 2019 the following students are entitled access activities afforded with Pupil Premium funding:

Year GroupAccess to Pupil Premium
739.38 % of cohort
838.64 % of cohort
933.33 % of cohort
1035.42 % of cohort
1133.89 % of cohort

Orchard Mead Academy has an above national average percentage of students who are eligible for Free School Meals. The additional funding has enabled us to build on the excellent student welfare, support, academic guidance and high quality teaching that all of our students enjoy and target more intensive support to those students in the above groups whose attainment and progress is weakest.

Objectives & Expenditure

Orchard Mead Academy is proud of the diverse nature of our student body the profile of which reflects the school’s complex urban environment. First and foremost, our strategy for use of pupil funding puts quality teaching first to raise achievement. However, experience tells us that in order to secure positive outcomes for disadvantaged students we need to go beyond this approach to have the maximum impact. The ambitions which drive our Pupil Premium spend are:

  1. Raising achievement and attainment
  2. Improving attendance
  3. Building social and cultural capital
  4. Strengthening parental engagement
  5. Providing additional support and intervention for the most vulnerable students
  6. Raising aspirations – quality careers education and work related activity

The Sutton Trust research indicates that effective support improving outcomes for PP students is tailored to the individual needs of the student and not generic. For this reason, we have appointed Heads of Houses whose role is to target under performing Pupil Premium students, to establish the cause of their under performance and to remove barriers where possible. The additional Pupil Premium funding has also enabled the school to invest in PiXL and in particular the work they do with schools to address under performance of Pupil Premium students. Use of the Horseforth quadrant to focus in class interventions of an appropriate nature on the right students is making significant improvements in attainment. Being part of the Brilliant Club Scholar’s Programme has brought additional personalised support to targeted high attaining students by raising their self-belief and in turn their aspirations.

Students are unlikely to make the expected levels of progress required or realise their full potential unless they attend school regularly. Orchard Mead Academy has invested in developing and delivering plans to improve levels of student attendance. A full time attendance officer has been employed to ensure capacity is in place to support individual students and their families as well as to coherently track attendance in a sustained manner. The attendance strategy is further supported by seven Pastoral Coordinators (PASCOS), four Heads of House, a Reintegration Manager and a full time Education Welfare Officer, all who are employed to lead on the pastoral and attendance support of our students. Improvements in attendance are already being seen as a result of very specific targeted interventions with students and their families.

Social class remains the strongest predictor of educational achievement; young people from low-income backgrounds who are provided with better formal and informal support to help them navigate this gap and make effective decisions about progression are more likely to go on to enjoy fulfilling careers.

Orchard Mead Academy supports its young people by actively providing opportunities that will close or ‘fill’ those knowledge and experience gaps so that they are equipped with the self-confidence and comfort with which to fulfil their true potential.

Recent appointments include four Leadership roles to enhance the cultural capital of students at Hamilton Academy, with a responsibility in particular for Pupil Premium students.

One role will be to ensure that students compete in high profile National competitions throughout the academic year, meeting and engaging with students from schools across the country.

The second role is to introduce a vibrant Duke of Edinburgh scheme, starting with bronze and working to silver so students can engage in community work, outdoor challenges and learn new skills with accreditations.

Our third cultural capital enhancing role is designed to heighten aspirations in our pupil premium students through a series of exciting excursions to events and places which will build their knowledge of the arts, music, sport to name a few.

Finally, we have appointed someone to ensure that student voice at Orchard Mead Academy is both heard and acted upon. Not only will our well established student council continue to thrive but many more opportunities for students to feedback on what more we can do for them will be created.

Parental support is essential in raising student attainment. Empowering parents helps them to support their children and the school in raising standards. Orchard Mead Academy recognises the importance of parental engagement in the raising of student achievement and is actively building effective partnerships with parents.

In we are committed to build upon our communication with parents in the following ways:

  • A monthly newsletter with important messages and exciting news about school
  • Class charts through which behaviour, successes and homework are published
  • Increased opportunities for parents to engage with teachers and leaders on how to support their children navigate the challenges of secondary education

At Orchard Mead Academy we aim to make a positive difference by enabling all children to become responsible citizens, confident individuals, successful learners and effective contributors.

Children’s wellbeing is essential in developing these four capacities, and school staff support the wellbeing of children in many ways, not least taking it into consideration in all decisions that are made.

Through the Virtual School we have been able to provide specialised training for all staff on attachment with follow up sessions on classroom action planning and emotion coaching.

Year 11 students who are in receipt of the Pupil Premium are offered additional support with revision, resources and teacher input.

Orchard Mead Academy is committed to ensuring effective use of the Pupil Premium to help disadvantaged students make rapid, sustained progress, as well as raise their aspirations for the future. Pupil Premium is used to ensure that Pupil Premium students benefit from the same opportunities as wealthier families thereby increasing social mobility.

Being part of the Brilliant Club Scholar’s Programme has brought additional personalised support to targeted high attaining students by raising their self-belief and in turn their aspirations. Graduating at a top university, having written a dissertation as a result of independent learning should encourage our Pupil Premium students to aspire to attending university themselves as well as giving them the confidence to make successful applications.

We believe the best way to increase social mobility is to enable more pupils from disadvantaged backgrounds to get to the best possible post-16 provisions and institutions.

Esteeming Experiences

At Orchard Mead Academy we strive to create the best opportunities and experiences for all. The way we have chosen to spend aspects of the funding means that other vulnerable students can also benefit from the approaches adopted by the school.

As part of our commitment to delivering the best possible educational and extra-curricular experience for our students, we use some of our funding to provide additional enrichment opportunities for Pupil Premium students such as visits abroad to experience the culture and language of another country, visits to universities to work alongside undergraduates, work experience placements with local industries to experiment with different careers and meet a wide range of people within those industries, meeting MPs and visiting governments at home and abroad to improve understanding of politics and its place in our world.

Special Circumstances Allowance

There may be occasions when Premium students need support in purchasing equipment, activities or trips or even uniform.

To access this support students need to complete a request form stating how the additional funding will support their progress. All requests will be assessed for suitability before being agreed. Request forms are available from Student reception and Heads of House.

Pupil Premium Champion

In 2017 we introduced the new role of Pupil Premium Champion. One of the key aspects of their role is to close the attainment gap between Pupil Premium and non-Pupil Premium cohorts. This is done by working to remove the barriers to learning for students and by supporting their personal and academic development.

Our key purpose in the creation of this role was to appoint a designated person to act as an advocate and champion the needs of our students who are eligible for Pupil Premium by working to remove barriers to learning for these students through the focused support of their personal and academic development.

The day to day responsibilities and tasks of our Pupil Premium Champion include:

  • Developing constructive and supportive relationships with the Key Stage Pupil Premium cohort, and engage with students in order to maximise future choices
  • Assist class teachers in lessons to ensure Pupil Premium students are making the required progress in lessons. Support with class work, revision, homework, and behaviour
  • Mentor individuals, and small groups of students eligible for Pupil Premium, and liaise with the SENCO, YTL, FTL, and a range of other external agencies, as appropriate, so that students are able to access the curriculum and make or exceed the required progress
  • Proactively seek out, identify, plan, organise, and lead an extensive variety of academic, social and esteeming interventions for students eligible for the Pupil Premium, including trips, study support, residential, and extended school’s opportunities
  • Proactively seek out, identify, plan, organise, and lead an extensive variety of interventions with the parents / carers of students eligible for Pupil Premium, to help the school close the achievement gap between Pupil Premium and Non Pupil Premium students
  • Track interventions to identify improvement in students’ academic progress, attainment and attendance
  • Maintain the Pupil Premium database ensuring that it is up to date for their Key Stage and track a range of data on Pupil Premium students’ performance, behaviour and attendance, and update any other confidential records
  • Assist with monitoring and evaluating information and the compilation of reports, when required
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