Secondary schools can now apply for summer school funding from the Department for Education. It is a great opportunity to help disadvantaged pupils joining Year 7 in September and should not be missed. Read on to find out how to apply, how to make the most of funding and how to organise a summer school.
What is it?
The Pupil Premium Summer Schools Programme aims to support the transition of eligible pupils from primary to secondary school by funding activities during the summer holidays. You can invite eligible pupils from other year groups in school but these places won’t be funded by the programme.
Why hold a summer school?
Summer schools deliver significant benefits for pupils. They support their social and emotional well-being and help to raise achievement throughout the academic year. It gives young people the best possible start to secondary school life.
A report published by the Department of Education on the impact of summer schools held in 2012 shows that disadvantaged pupils are more likely to feel worried about transition than their peers. Summer schools address this problem by enabling pupils to familiarise themselves with their new school, make new friends and develop new skills and interests, boosting their confidence and self-esteem. When they start school, they feel welcome and are ready to learn.
In the wider community, summer schools also help families with childcare costs during the holidays and they foster long-lasting, positive relationships between schools and families.
Is my school eligible?
Applications are welcome from maintained secondary schools including special schools, academies including special schools, free schools including special schools, non-maintained special schools and independent special schools.
Which pupils are eligible?
Eligible pupils are those who:
- Are registered as eligible for FSM or who have been registered at any point in the last 6 years (known as ‘Ever6’); or
- Have been looked after by the local authority for a day or more; or
- Were previously looked after and left care through being adopted, or under a Special Guardianship Order, Child Arrangements Order or Residence Order; and
- Who have been recorded on the January Schools Census as being in one of these categories.
Schools can use the Key to Success website to identify which pupils moving to their school are eligible for the pupil premium.
How much is available?
Schools will receive £250 (if running a one-week summer school) or £500 (if running a two-week summer school) for every eligible pupil who confirms they want to attend the summer school.
How do I apply?
It couldn’t be easier – simply complete a short online form by the 29th May 2015. You will receive an email within 24 hours of submitting the form. This email will confirm your provisional funding allocation.
How do I run a summer school?
We know how busy schools are – but this opportunity is too good to miss for the positive difference it can make for pupils. The good news is that you can work with other organisations that can help you plan and run your summer school. One organisation that can help with this is Keep Kids Active, a Community Interest Company that works with schools across the North East of England. They have years of experience running summer holiday camps in schools, delivering high quality sports coaching, arts and crafts activities, cooking and nutrition classes and film clubs. They can advise on how to get the most out of your funding so that all pupils participating in the summer school can continue to benefit from their experience throughout the year. They also have the tools you need to monitor pupil progress and evaluate the summer school, providing important data to inform future activities. Colin Dagg at Keep Kids Active can be contacted on 0191 5194322.
For more information about the Pupil Premium Summer Schools Programme, and to gain access to the online form, visit the Department for Education website.