The majority of children attending Downlands Community School will qualify for the Services Pupil Premium (SPP), having at least one parent serving in the regular armed forces. More information about SPP can be found at this government information site. Downlands Community School places huge importance on ensuring that children from services families are welcomed, included and supported as soon as they arrive so that they feel safe, happy and confident in their new learning environment. This can be from the simple but important actions of making sure that children know where to hang their coats and bags and providing peer supporters, but also includes highly skilled and experienced pastoral support staff who are there to provide emotional literacy support and to manage important issues surrounding friendships. We have used our expertise in this area to bid for MOD funding to support resources that can help children to settle and bridge educational gaps. For example, all KS2 pupils have access to an iPad and all EYFS children now enjoy Forest School experiences. We work closely with in-situ Garrison Welfare in terms of receiving support from Youth Development Workers and in joint planning and resourcing of extra-curricular events such as Bonfire Night and Halloween. The school also ensures that it engages with the latest research on this area by engaging with the Services Children’s Progression Alliance.
The school also aims to improve educational outcomes for pupils likely to be at a disadvantage due to other social or economic factors such as eligibility for free school meals or children who have ever been looked after by the local authority currently, or in the past. The school actively monitors the progress of all children but will make sure that those from disadvantaged backgrounds have enhanced access to additional support where gaps are identified in either academic or pastoral development.
A full breakdown of the school’s Pupil Premium Strategy for the latest academic year can be found here:
A summary of our PE and Sports Premium funding spend can be found here: