Year 7 Catch-up Premium
The literacy and numeracy catch-up premium is provided by the Department for Education and gives schools additional funding to support year 7 pupils who did not achieve the expected standard in reading or maths at the end of key stage 2 (KS2). All state-funded schools with year 7 pupils receive this funding, including special schools, whether maintained by a local authority or operating as an academy or free school.
To date, we have not been advised of Year 7 catch-up funding for 2016-17. However, with the assumption that arrangements will be the same as for the previous year, we estimate that we should receive £11,000 for the 2016-17 academic year when this is released to academies from EFA on 1st March 2017. Our strategy for how this funding will be used is under review, pending grant confirmation.
In 2015-16 Oak Lodge School received £10,000 Year 7 catch-up premium grant. This funding was used to promote enhanced engagement with learning using the SCERTS model (Social Communication and Emotional Regulation through implementation of Transactional Support) to facilitate improved rates of progress in literacy, numeracy and wider academic or social development.
A plan was developed to embed sensory activities into the curriculum to demonstrate that the learning environment we provided was effective in moving our students towards enhanced engagement with learning. SCERTS is an educational framework that sits alongside other baseline assessments taken at year 7 and combines evidence from research into the impact of sensory processing differences on regulation of arousal and joint attention, both of which impact significantly on capacity to learn.
SCERTS baseline measures forced us to look carefully at how we were matching our interventions and supports in a developmentally appropriate and meaningful way. This enabled us to determine essential environmental arrangements to support sensory sensitivities and embed these in functional learning contexts in year 7 classrooms.
We liaised with Occupational Therapy colleagues to purchase sensory equipment using our Year 7 catch-up premium, to introduce sensory options into activities and observed how this impacted on each individuals ability to interact with others more positively and play and learn in a meaningful way. By reducing the sensory challenges in the environment and embedding sensory activities into learning tasks this helped to directly link qualitative differences observed in self regulation together with capacity for improved engagement with learning. Therefore all the skills taught were functional and had purpose but more importantly, addressed the core areas that can pose the most difficulty for our students, helping them to engage more successfully in formal learning tasks.
In key social and emotional growth areas, students are making progress from their original baseline. Students made the most progress in ‘Sense of Self’ and ‘Independence’. This supports our young people to be more active participants of their communities, with greater independence and better well being , leading to enhanced progress in formal learning.