Pupil premium

The pupil premium is additional funding for schools to support schools in raising the attainment of disadvantaged pupils of all abilities. Pupil premium funding supports pupils who are currently eligible for free school meals or have been eligible for free school meals at any point in the last six years. It is also for 'Looked After Children' or children whose parents are in the armed forces.

This statement details our school’s use of pupil premium (and recovery premium for the 2023 to 2024 academic year) funding to help improve the attainment of our disadvantaged pupils. 

It outlines our pupil premium strategy, how we intend to spend the funding in this academic year and the effect that last year’s spending of pupil premium had within our school. 

School overview



School name

Sacriston Academy

Number of pupils in school 


Proportion (%) of pupil premium eligible pupils


Academic year/years that our current pupil premium strategy plan covers (3-year plans are recommended)

2021- 2024

Date this statement was published

October 2023

Date on which it will be reviewed

September 2024

Statement authorised by

Annalei Bartlett

Pupil premium lead

Louise Parks


Funding overview



Pupil premium funding allocation this academic year (23-24)


Recovery premium funding allocation this 2023/24 only


Pupil premium funding carried forward from previous years (enter £0 if not applicable)


Total budget for this academic year


£122, 173




Part A: Pupil premium strategy plan

Statement of intent

Sacriston Academy has a Pupil Premium Grant and Recovery Premium allocation of £121,450 for the academic year 2022-2023. This funding is given with a specific remit of diminishing any differences between disadvantaged pupils and those who are not disadvantaged. Sacriston Academy is working to support disadvantaged pupils in all areas of their education from the moment that they arrive in school. Our aim is that every disadvantaged pupil will achieve at least as well as their peers and have every opportunity to excel. 

Some disadvantaged pupils face many and complex barriers in during their education which make effective learning very difficult. Other pupils have very specific needs and still others, have few barriers at all. Below are some of the main difficulties faced, although it must also be said that the difficulties encountered are not unique to those who are disadvantaged. 

Common barriers to learning for disadvantaged pupils include less support at home, especially during the pandemic, weak language and communication skills, fewer opportunities to read books, fewer resources to help with learning (e.g. laptop / internet access), lack of confidence, more frequent behaviour difficulties and attendance and punctuality concerns. Some pupils have struggled with their physical and mental well-being and this has been exacerbated as a result of the pandemic. There may be complex family situations that prevent children from flourishing. Some pupils have limited opportunities to experience cultural trips and visits. Some have fewer opportunities to learn about the wide range of opportunities once they leave school for higher education and employment. The challenges are varied and there is no “one size fits all”. 

Our ultimate objectives are:

  • To narrow the attainment gap between disadvantaged and non-disadvantaged pupils.
  • To make or exceed nationally expected progress rates.
  • To support our children’s health and wellbeing to enable them to access learning at an appropriate level.
  • To experience a wealth of enrichment experiences to widen their horizons and unlock future opportunities.

We aim to do this through:

  • Ensuring that teaching and learning opportunities meet the needs of all the pupils.
  • Ensuring that appropriate provision is made for pupils who belong to vulnerable groups, this includes ensuring that the needs of socially disadvantaged pupils are adequately assessed and addressed through additional targeted teaching and support.
  • A clear focus on increasing the resilience of pupils, building their self-esteem and also enabling them to develop those skills that will enable them to learn effectively in the classroom environment.   
  • Instilling high aspirations for all pupils so that they are able to experience, first-hand, the wide range of opportunities available to them.
  • Ensuring enrichment programmes are accessed by all, providing financial support to enable pupils to participate.

Achieving these objectives:

Additional targeted teaching and support

  • Ensuring all teaching is good or better thus ensuring that the quality of teaching experienced by all children is improved.
  • A dedicated intervention lead teacher. 
  • All teachers focus on language and literacy development. Vocabulary banks are commonly used, and new language carefully introduced. Enriching and extending the wealth of language used by pupils is a key focus for staff, understanding that this will provide a route to access learning and a wider range of future career options.  Additional 1:1 support with early talk, phonics and early reading.

Pastoral Support

  • Pupils work individual or in small groups with external support agencies in order to support their needs and to build their self-respect and resilience.
  • The Emotional Well Being Support Worker is on site for half a day per week to work with targeted children to improve outcomes which enable pupils to progress in all aspects of their development.

Behaviour Management

  • For a whole range of reasons some pupils struggle to accept boundaries and manage their own behaviour. Extensive support is provided by Senior Leadership Team and where appropriate external support agencies.

Curriculum Programmes

  • Identified children receive 1 to 1 support or intervention within smaller groups. For some pupils this is planned on a regular basis and for others, it is managed by each teacher in conjunction with the SENDCO / DSL, according to needs as they arise during the year. 
  • Small group support to focus on addressing specific needs of pupils is planned as pupils’ approach key assessment points.

High Aspirations

  • For some pupils, careers visits are planned into their learning programs so that they are able to experience, first-hand, the wide range of opportunities available to them.

Enrichment Programmes – beyond the curriculum

  • School Trips / Theatre Visits / Residential Visits/ Visitors to School – financial support is provided to enable pupils to participate. These will have a focus on raising aspirations and widening experience.
  • Sports Coach - works with all pupils to provide coaching in a range of sports every lunchtime and after-school and ensure that pupils engage with sports (few facilities anywhere in local area). 
  • Sport: access to enrichment through sport with financial support to provide access and equipment.
  • Music: provision of instrument-based tuition.

Family & Community Programmes

  • Support for transport costs for disadvantaged pupils.  
  • Re-introduction of cooking into the curriculum.


This details the key challenges to achievement that we have identified among our disadvantaged pupils.

Challenge number

Detail of challenge 


Impact of school closure on all pupils.


Narrowing the attainment gap across Reading, Writing, Maths and Science


Some children enter the Early Years provision knowing significantly fewer words than their peers and with significant speech and language difficulties. This persists into KS1 for some children, and they need significant support to develop as confident speakers who are able to express themselves clearly and with an appropriate range of vocabulary for their age.


Some pupils struggle to attend regularly, and some are persistently absent


Some pupils need extensive pastoral support for a variety of reasons.


Some pupils face significant challenges in their lives and have social, emotional, and mental health needs that prevent them from learning. The pandemic has caused significant difficulties for some children including loss of family members. 


Some pupils have very low expectations of themselves. In order to respond to the school’s high expectations, and this needs constant re-enforcement and encouragement. Some families need support so that they are able to raise their expectations for their children and this may require targeted intervention and support. 


Some pupils need to experience a wealth of enrichment experiences and a wide, rich curriculum, in order to widen their horizons and unlock future opportunities.


Some pupils do not have access to a healthy diet which impacts on their general well-being. Some do not participate regularly in sports and need proactive, individual support in order to overcome barriers.



Intended outcomes 

This explains the outcomes we are aiming for by the end of our current strategy plan, and how we will measure whether they have been achieved.

Intended outcome

Success criteria

Pupils make at least expected progress in reading, writing and maths.

Gap will close in progress made between PP and non-PP.


Average attendance of disadvantaged cohort is in line with the national average or above.  

Health and Well-Being

Increased capacity on the pastoral team to support vulnerable families and children

Raising aspirations and broadening experiences

Increased social and cultural exposure through educational visits and visitors into school. 


Activity in this academic year

This details how we intend to spend our pupil premium (and recovery premium funding) this academic yearto address the challenges listed above.

Teaching (for example, CPD, recruitment and retention)

Budgeted cost: £ 61,000


Evidence that supports this approach

Challenge number(s) addressed

High quality professional development for all staff so that outstanding practice is maintained in all classrooms. 

EEF guide to pupil premium – tiered approach – teaching is the top priority, including CPD

Sutton Trust – quality first teaching has direct impact on student outcomes.

1, 2, 3, 7, 8

Deepen teacher’s understanding of pedagogy across each curriculum by engagement with subject specialists in their field. 

Visits to a main feeder secondary to observe Y7/8 pupils from Sacriston Academy, following transition, will be undertaken to enhance teacher’s understanding of how knowledge builds in readiness for the next key stage and make amendments as needed to the curriculum.

EEF: Effective Professional Development

EEF: Teaching and Learning Toolkit

Ofsted: Curriculum research reviews


1,2, 3, 7, 8

Training to improve vocabulary acquisition across the curriculum even further, so that pupils are able to access the full curriculum and articulate their understanding.

Training to close the deficit in vocabulary on entry in the Early Years so that children’s 

EEF: Preparing for Literacy

EEF: Improving Literacy - Supporting oral language development KS1/KS2


Embedding dialogic activities across the school curriculum. These can support pupils to articulate key ideas, consolidate understanding and extend vocabulary. 

We will purchase resources and fund ongoing teacher training and release time. 

There is a strong evidence base that suggests oral language interventions, including dialogic activities such as high-quality classroom discussion, are inexpensive to implement with high impacts on reading:

EEF: Oral language interventions | Toolkit Strand 



Targeted academic support (for example, tutoring, one-to-one support structured interventions) 

Budgeted cost: £ 31,000


Evidence that supports this approach

Challenge number(s) addressed

Pupils to learn how to employ cognitive and metacognitive strategies to support them to remember more.

EEF guide to improving working memory

Training and supporting highly qualified teachers deliver targeted support.


Speech and language therapist to support staff to plan and deliver speech interventions

EEF – oral language interventions consistently show positive impact on learning

Specialist therapists will train up staff they work with in school, therefore upskilling them and increasing their knowledge.


Provision and deployment of teaching assistants appropriately is essential to supporting learning ‘in the moment’ and being able to respond to pupils who need additional support to keep up and catch up.  

EEF: Making Best Use of Teaching Assistants


Provision and staffing of safe spaces available to targeted children throughout the day.

NFER: Recovery during a pandemic


Social and Emotional Learning – interventions to support children with a range of skills including for example, emotional regulation, managing grief. Deployment of   Psychological Wellbeing Practitioner  

EEF: Improving Social and Emotional Learning in Primary Schools 

NFER: Recovery during a pandemic


Engaging with the school-led tutoring for pupils whose education has been most impacted by the pandemic. A significant proportion of the pupils who receive tutoring will be disadvantaged, including those who are high attainers.

Tuition targeted at specific needs and knowledge gaps can be an effective method to support low attaining pupils or those falling behind, both one-to-one and in small groups:

EEF: One to one tuition 

EEF: Small group tuition | Toolkit Strand



Wider strategies (for example, related to attendance, behaviour, wellbeing)

Budgeted cost: £30,000


Evidence that supports this approach

Challenge number(s) addressed

Provision of daily breakfast in classrooms for all.

National School Breakfast Programme (NSBP) 


Planned opportunities for Character Education underpinned by Jubilee Centre programme.

DfE: Developing character skills in schools

NFER: Leading Character Education in Schools


Support for families from the attendance team

DfE: Improving school attendance: support for schools and local authorities

Sutton Trust: Learning in Lockdown


Provision of family cooking clubs to promote healthy eating (use of secondary facilities) 

DfE: Creating a culture and ethos of healthy eating 

EEF: Parental Engagement


Bespoke fitness activities for identified pupils to engage with sports

EEF: Parental Engagement



Total budgeted cost: £ 122,000

Part B: Review of outcomes in the previous academic year 

Pupil premium strategy outcomes

This details the impact that our pupil premium activity had on pupils in the 2021 to 2022 academic year. 

The impact of that expenditure on pupil premium children:

  • All children received specific individual support with core intervention sessions. This targeted provision was successful in enabling pupils to catch up with other pupils if they had fallen behind and for others, the progress accelerated further.
  • Attendance for disadvantaged pupils was 92.8% for the academic year compared to 93.6% for non-disadvantaged pupils.
  • Enrichment activities have continued to support children in the wider curriculum and to support their talents. More children have taken up enrichment opportunities.
  • Children have made at least good progress across the school despite disruptions to learning due to COVID19.
  • Investment in emotional well-being and mental health ensured children and families have been well supported. Consultation meetings with a Psychological Wellbeing Practitioner with class teachers gave specialist advice on how best to support pupils. This has enabled pupils to utilise their self-regulation strategies and staff are knowledgeable in how best to support them.
  • Termly tracking of progress has enabled SLT to intervene at the earliest possible time ensuring specific support can be implemented.  As a result, pupils are able to engage and focus within lessons and achieve well.
  • Enhanced transitions for pupils moving key stages or to secondary school were effective. They ensured continuity for children and were an important foundation for future learning. 
  • Continuous and sustained professional development on evidence-based classroom approaches has built upon staff knowledge, developed teacher techniques, and embedded practice. 
  • Provision of a daily breakfast for all had a positive impact on pupil’s educational attainment, concentration, energy levels and readiness to learn.