The catch-up premium is funded on a per pupil basis at £80 per pupil. This will be based on the previous year’s census and will not include Nursery numbers, meaning that Heber will be in receipt of £32,400 (405 x £80). The spending of this money will be down to schools to allocate as they see best. To support schools to make the best use of this funding, the Education Endowment Foundation has published a support guide for schools with evidence-based approaches to catch up for all students.
“Children from disadvantaged backgrounds are likely to have been more affected particularly severely by closures and may need more support to return to school and settle back into school life. Whilst all pupils will benefit from the EEF recommendations, it is likely that some forms of support will be particularly beneficial to disadvantaged.”
(Covid-19 Support Guide for Schools – June 2020)
At Heber, we aim to combine professional knowledge with robust evidence about approaches that are known to be effective to accelerate the progress made by pupils who have been particularly affected by school closure, including disadvantaged pupils. Our aim is that outcomes (both in academic and wellbeing terms) are at least in line with their peers. This is a school priority and will continue to be a focus into the next academic year and beyond.
Our Priorities as a school both during and post closure are twofold:
1. Ensure that all children are ready to learn by addressing any wellbeing needs that have arisen due to lockdown.
The school’s work in supporting the wellbeing of children and their families continues to be a priority, remaining at the heart of all that we do for our children. Work in this area includes the following:
For all children
- A new ‘Social and Emotional’ scheme of learning called RULER, which research has proven has significant impact on children’s ability to recognise, understand, label, express and regulate their emotions. This will be delivered through structured sessions built into the timetable when children return to school.
- Additional time spent on mental health, wellbeing and social skills development. This will be at the core of all catch up work as many children will have not been in formal school setting for a number of months.
- Planning and providing transition support based on the needs of year groups and classes.
- A modified timetable which includes more ‘form time’ for children to reflect and engage with each other and their emotions.
For some children
- Social and emotional intervention support from the school’s inclusion team and learning mentor, both during and beyond school closures.
- Personalised adapted provision based on the individual needs of children most at risk from wellbeing being a barrier to learning.
2. Ensure that all children’s academic learning is rigorously supported in order to facilitate accelerated academic progress to minimise the long impact of school closure on learning.
Once each child’s social and emotional wellbeing is in a place where effective learning can take place, the gaps in the children’s learning that have developed as a result of school closure must be prioritised. Work in this area includes the following:
For all children
- Assessment of learning and of basic skills to identify major gaps. Teachers will work to identify gaps in learning and adapt teaching accordingly.
- Working through well sequenced, adapted learning schemes to cater for the learning the children have missed by:
- Focusing on core skills and objectives missed so that the children are ready for the following academic year with a strong foundation in each subject.
- Carefully re-planning where missed objectives can be rebuilt back into our progressive curriculum in the long term by adapting our long term subject plans in order to ensure progression.
- Increasing the time spent on Maths fluency through timetabled morning tasks that support the learning of times tables and mental maths strategies.
- Particular focus on early reading and phonics. This is always a focus in the school and will continue to be so in order to develop children’s reading ability and vocabulary.
For some children
- Targeted interventions designed to address specific needs, led by support upskilled staff who know the children, supported by additional training.
- Targeted 1:1 and small group tutoring led by redeployed Heber teachers, who are best placed to address the needs of the children in the Heber family, supported by additional training.
- Targeted booster sessions in small groups led by more experienced Heber teachers, in order to support the needs arising, supported by additional time in the school day.
- Additional time to practice basic skills. This again will be dependent on the need of children in order to re-establish good progress in the essentials (phonics and reading, increasing vocabulary, writing and mathematics) and there will be flexibility on timetables to allow this.
Much of our work in this area (both during lockdown and moving forwards) will be centred around increasing the capacity of the people who know our children best, the Heber staff, to deliver the support the children need the most. Other spending will include:
- Buying into resources such as the new social and emotional scheme of learning, RULER
- Developing the school’s technology offer in order to support remote personalised tutoring delivered by Heber teachers
- The purchasing of resources that support both our assessment of the children and the subsequent provision that is put in place thereafter to address the needs arising.