Venue: Stour Room, Sessions House, County Hall, Maidstone. View directions
Contact: Gaetano Romagnuolo 03000 416624
1. The Chairman welcomed the two guests; Ashley Crittenden and Paula Martin to the Select Committee meeting and invited all those present to introduce themselves.
2. Ashley Crittenden explained that she had been the Headteacher at the West Borough Primary School for the past 11 years over which time the school had gone from struggling with numbers to being full and oversubscribed. This year the school had been asked to take on an addition class of children due to the need within the local area. The addition of a nursery attached to the school had helped service and support a socially deprived area. The school was passionate about their children and wanted every child to achieve well and have a positive outlook of school.
3. Paula Martin made the Committee aware of her role as the Assistant Headteacher and the schools SENCO. Her role also covered responsibilities for children with additional needs, Pupil Premium, attendance and student and family support.
4. The Chairman asked for comments on how vital the early years of education were. Ashley Crittenden explained that the nursery had grown from the changes - being more flexible with the hours offered to parents. This had led to the nursery becoming full and had benefitted from a highly qualified teacher leading the provision with SENCO experience. It had become essential to tap into families at an early stage and with a children centre attached to the site, they could work in partnership to identify needs for the transition period for moving into school. They also had children eligible for the early years Pupil Premium which formed part of the school’s overall strategy although it did not see them as two separate entities.
5. The Chairman requested a breakdown of the nursery’s early years Pupil Premium. Ashley Crittenden informed the Committee that they had only just been allocated the funds and the overall Pupil Premium budget was £143,800 and of that £1,500 was for the early years Pupil Premium. Some of that money was identified for children with sensory issues and funded a new sensory room.
6. The Chairman enquired how the Pupil Premium had been used as some schools use it on an individual basis with others using it for the school as a whole. Ashley Crittenden commented that funds had be used to benefit the many at the school and children were tracked to help identify any barriers they might have had. They also looked at what had worked well and those that had measurable impacts on children so a decision could be made whether to continue. Paula Martin commented that it was looked at as a whole school picture; they identified the needs of the children across the school and looked at it through pupil progress meetings.
7. The Chairman asked whether making the parents motivated and interested made a difference when deciding on how the money was to be allocated. Ashley Crittenden gave an example of when Pupil Premium was first introduced some of the ... view the full minutes text for item 16.
1. The Chair welcomed the Select Committee Members and the two guests: James Brooke and Viki Butler to the Select Committee meeting and she invited all those present to introduce themselves.
2. James Brooke and Viki Butler gave members a printed handout presentation which is appended to these minutes.
3. James Brooke explained that the school had expanded 3 years ago with its sixth form now up to 600 students. With the changed curriculum and splitting sides with Chaucer, Riverside and Phoenix House, the school have been able to increase timetable to 6:00pm with twilight lessons becoming available for sixth form.
4. The Chair asked the location of Canterbury Academy within the City. James Brooke explained that they were an Academy trust along Kent Medical Needs School that’s under Kent County Council, Canterbury primary, a nursery school, high school and sixth form with lifestyle fitness and the Kent Adult Education on site.
5. A member commented on whether the school was for students all the way through till leaving education. James Brooke explained that the Chaucer school closed years ago and the site was taken on to get the community back. Barton Court were to be moving on site in a few years so they’d need to find an alternative site for sixth form and some students with learning needs.
6. Q. Is there a separate unit or unit specialist in Autism?
A. Since changing under Kent County Council to have provision for Speech and Language needs, there has been registered interest for ASD in primary schools to continue and for it to continue in secondary to combine for independent ASD.
7. A member commented on the closing and retracting of schools in the area and because the school offer so much in sixth form, how were they managing.
8. James Brooke explained that a few years ago they had looked at staffing of teachers to become more flexible on the timetable so that they could work till 6pm for twilight teaching. James Brooke mentioned that vocational learning was linked to Simon Langton Girls and Boys Grammar School in order to support teaching and to work with their staff. James Brooke mentioned that they are fully inclusive and flexible as 60% of students are from other schools that have left year 11.
9. Viki Butler explained that the school attracts students which is why they are successful. KS4 in particular were students decide what subjects they want to do and can be provided with support, courses and opportunities.
10. Q – Are you an Academy trust?
A – Within the trust: Canterbury Primary School, City View nursery and Wincheap Primary, which have their own DFE number. Canterbury high school and the sixth form also are DFE registered under multi-Academy. All centres are separate and a decision was made to not permanently exclude children in area since 2011. James Brooke confirmed the idea being that if a child was naughty, they’d find alternative provision to get the support that they need. ... view the full minutes text for item 17.
Sue Beauchamp (Head Teacher, Two Bridges Pupil Referral Unit (PRU)) was in attendance for this item.
The Chair welcomed Sue to the Committee and declared an interest as her grandchild attended a Pupil Referral Unit.
Sue began by explaining that she was the Head Teacher of Two Bridges Pupil Referral Unit (PRU) which served Tonbridge, Tunbridge Wells and South Sevenoaks; she had previously been a Senior Leader in three secondary schools in London and the North West Kent PRU. She reported that she had been the Head Teacher of the Two Bridges PRU since 2014 and had brought together Key Stages 3 & 4 and moved the unit to a temporary and then permanent purpose-built site which was fit for purpose and made the students feel valued.
She stated that Two Bridges ran a primary intervention programme for students in Key Stage 1 & 2 across 75 primary schools which the unit charged for. Two Bridges also supported all local secondary schools and worked with Key Stage 3 students, who spent 14 weeks at the unit, before reintegrating to mainstream school which the unit did not charge for. The school also supported up to 40 Key Stage 4 students in Years 10 & 11 whilst they completed their GCSEs before transitioning to college or apprenticeships; the unit invoiced the schools of the Key Stage 4 students for the £575 and £900 Pupil Premium. The unit had an average of 105 – 110 students over the academic year but only had 60 students on dual roll at any one time.
Q – If a student is eligible for pupil premium, does the unit receive it directly?
Sue explained that the unit had a dual roll with the school from which the student had been referred from. The school received the pupil premium funding and the unit invoiced the school.
Q – How do you spend the pupil premium?
Sue reported that 47% of students were eligible for Free School Meals; from the students who attracted pupil premium funding, the unit received approximately £12,000 a year. She provided the Committee with a report which detailed the interventions to support pupil premium students. The interventions included:
§ the use of the pastoral manager to provide additional tutoring and transition support;
§ the provision of attendance support to help students settle in by collecting them from home during their induction period and providing early morning calls;
§ the use of Alfiesoft to identify gaps in learning on arrival to the unit
§ the use of resources to support SEND students;
§ the purchase of sports equipment and food tech resources to promote a healthy lifestyle;
§ visits to socially related experiences such as the Globe Theatre London, Tonbridge castle, Art Galleries and most recently Tonbridge School for a Harry Potter experience.
Sue stated that in terms of impact, the provision of attendance support and engagement with students and their families had improved the attendance of Free School Meals students from 67-70% in a mainstream school to over ... view the full minutes text for item 18.