Pupil Premium Information 2021-22

Pupil Premium is additional to main school funding and is allocated to schools for children who have been registered for free school meals at any time in the last 6 years, have been looked after for one day or more, are adopted from care or leave care under a Special Guardianship or Residence Order or whose parents have served in the armed forces in any of the previous 4 years.

The aim of the funding is to help address the current inequalities which exist between these children and their peers by raising achievement and improving outcomes. High quality teaching and learning is important to all children, regardless of their background or situation; this is what we strive to provide at Abbeyfields and all staff are committed to this.

It is important to note that not all children eligible for free school meals are low attaining or making poor progress. The individual needs of each cohort in any particular academic year will be assessed and planned for appropriately.

Click here to read our Pupil Premium Policy

Pupil Premium strategy statement

This statement details our school’s use of pupil premium (and recovery premium for the 2021 to 2022 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

 Detail  Data
 School name  Abbeyfields First School
 Number of pupils in school  333 (Nursery-Year 4)
 Proportion (%) of pupil premium eligible pupils  13%
 Academic year/years that our current pupil premium strategy plan   covers (3 year plans are recommended)  2020-2022
 Date this statement was published  2021-2022
 Date on which it will be reviewed  July 2022
 Statement authorised by  Academy Council
 Pupil Premium lead  Lisa Shooter
 Governor / Trustee lead  Andrew Tebbutt             (Academy Councillor)

Funding overview

 Detail  Amount
 Pupil premium funding allocation this academic year  £34,450
 Recovery premium funding allocation this academic year  £ 3,480

(£742.50 of this is allocated to school-led tutoring)

 Pupil premium funding carried forward from previous years  (enter £0 if not applicable)  £0
 Total budget for this academic year

If your school is an academy in a trust that pools this funding, state the amount available to your school this academic year


Part A: Pupil Premium Strategy Plan

Statement of intent


Abbeyfields is located in a diverse area of Morpeth as children that attend come from a wide range of economically diverse backgrounds. This includes a number of children who come from low income families, generational unemployment and social services involvement. We also have children from more affluent backgrounds.

Our challenge is to provide a ‘level playing field’ for our pupils to ensure we deliver equality of opportunity for all. We do this by ensuring children from low starting points are provided with the best possible support and experiences to enable them to succeed, whilst also providing for pupils who come to school more socially and academically ready. Whatever their background, we want the children to have the best experience we can give them.

We recognise that Covid-19 has presented significant challenges for the education of all children and acknowledge that disadvantaged children have been adversely affected. Communication and support was offered to all pupils during this time and where individual children and families required more support, this was offered (personalised work, access to IT, telephone advice and virtual learning sessions). We remain focussed on the needs of disadvantaged children in line with our overall policies of minimising the effects of a disrupted education for all children.

Our strategy builds on and enhances the effective strategies adopted and adapted over the last 3 or 4 years and reflects the Abbeyfields belief “Where every child is special”.

Aims for pupil premium spend 2021-22 

At Abbeyfields First School our intention is that all pupils, irrespective of their background, environment or the challenges they face, make good progress and achieve well across all subjects areas. All members of staff and Academy Councillors have high expectations and are committed to raising achievement for all children, diminishing the gap between children who are eligible for the Pupil Premium grant and their peers.

Our principles for pupil premium funding

At Abbeyfields, we are committed to ensuring that all of our children, within all pupil groups, (boys, girls, those with special educational needs, those with English as an additional language, those from different ethnic backgrounds), regardless of their background or disadvantage, achieve and exceed their potential. We recognise that not all children who may be eligible for free school meals (FSM) are disadvantaged and equally recognise those who are not eligible for FSM may also have significant barriers to learning.

As a school:

  • Our curriculum aims to provide a variety of experiences and opportunities to develop our children who are in receipt of Pupil Premium into confident, independent, successful learners who will thrive in later life and make a positive contribution to society.
  • Leaders ensure that the funding is used to create opportunities for children to develop resilience, perseverance, self-esteem through quality, targeted pastoral care in our Thrive approach for children and families.
  • We believe that high quality teaching is at the heart of our whole school approach, focusing on areas that disadvantaged pupils require the most support.
  • We are committed to meeting the pastoral, social and academic needs of all children within a caring and nurturing environment. This is an essential, integral part of the spiritual development of the whole school community.
  • We believe a love of reading must be high profile for all our children and reading for pleasure will form part of all pupil premium discussions.
  • Outdoor learning opportunities are provided as part of our universal offer to ensure all children have experiences to enhance in-class learning.
  • The children in receipt of Pupil Premium will benefit from opportunities to engage in additional teaching and learning opportunities and targeted support where necessary, aiming to support the learning of disadvantaged pupils, removing barriers and accessing the wider curriculum on offer.
  •  Our priorities during each academic year are cohort driven and actions identified will support our disadvantaged children, within the whole class setting.

Monitoring our pupil premium children

We will ensure our approaches are effective by checking all disadvantaged pupils are challenged in the work they are given and that effective and appropriate intervention is given at the point it is identified and needed. Our approach is embedded in our whole school practice where all staff have responsibility for disadvantaged pupils and work to raise expectations and achievements. The designated Academy Councillor will liaise regularly with the Pupil Premium Lead and the Headteacher to verify that the Pupil Premium policy and strategy is being implemented effectively. The designated Academy Councillor will conduct termly Pupil Premium monitoring visits with the Pupil Premium Lead.  The Headteacher will ensure that the needs of socially disadvantaged pupils are adequately assessed and actions addressed through termly progress meetings, their academic progress tracked, barriers to learning identified and targets and next steps set.


This section details the key challenges to achievement that we have identified among our disadvantaged pupils. This list is not exhaustive, neither do all parts of it apply to all of our disadvantaged children. Other factors that affect some of our pupils in receipt of pupil premium grant include gaps in school readiness from the early years, family stresses, anxiety and financial hardship, adverse childhood experiences and other identified additional needs.

Challenge number Detail of challenge 
1 The impact of COVID 19 has meant the gap has widened for a number of disadvantaged pupils.
2 Our assessments, observations and discussions with pupils have identified many social and emotional issues in our pupil premium children. Challenges such as self-esteem and self-belief, emotional resilience, self regulation, confidence and motivation are evident.
3 Assessments, observations and discussions with pupils have shown that an increasing number of children require additional Literacy support (SALT (Speech and Language Therapy), reading, oracy).
4 Assessments, observations and discussions with pupils suggests that an increasing number of pupil premium children also have additional needs, e.g. academic, social, emotional, concentration and self-help. There is an overlap with pupil premium children requiring support for SEND and THRIVE.

Vulnerable Groups 2021 – anonymised

5 Some of our pupil premium children have limited life experiences beyond their home and local community creating a disadvantage in their ‘cultural capital’.

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
To achieve and sustain improved well being for all pupils, particularly our disadvantaged pupils.
  • Pupil voice sessions will demonstrate that the children feel happy and safe at school
  • Quality of education observations will capture engagement in lessons for disadvantaged pupils
  • Children in receipt of the PPG will access wider school activities such as visits, clubs and residential (Y4)
Improved oracy, vocabulary and language skills among disadvantaged pupils.
  • Monitoring activities will demonstrate that all children will benefit from a language rich environment and activities embedded within the renewed Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) curriculum and across the whole school.
  • Reception children will be assessed using the Nuffield Early Language programme (NELI) and any gaps identified and addressed. Baseline to end of programme outcomes will be strong.
  • Observations show significantly improved levels of talk and oracy, including appropriate vocabulary evident in engagement in lessons across all subjects, book scrutinies, pupil voice sessions and ongoing formative assessments.
  • Planning scrutinies will show a  well planned, progressive, highly ambitious, challenging and knowledge/ language rich curriculum.
Improved reading attainment and outcomes among disadvantaged pupils.
  • Pupil premium children will achieve in line with their peers on the phonics check, meeting national expectations
  • The % of pupil premium children achieving reading standard at the end of Reception is in line with their non-disadvantaged peers
  • Reception children will be assessed using the Nuffield Early Language programme and any gaps identified and addressed. Baseline to end of programme outcomes will be strong.
Improved maths attainment and outcomes for disadvantaged pupils.
  • Observations will show that all children use specific mathematical vocabulary across the maths curriculum.
  • Disadvantaged pupils achieve and improve in line with their non-disadvantaged peers.
  • Children who are involved in pre-teach sessions to support them with key objectives and associated vocabulary show a marked improvement in engagement and success in lessons.
Pupils positive engagement in the broad and enriched curriculum on offer, including a focus upon cultural capital and goals and aspirations, preparing them for a successful future in and beyond school life.
  • Pupil premium voice will demonstrate that the disadvantaged children can identify their strengths and areas for improvement (in themselves) and articulate future career aspirations.
  • Year group pastoral plans take into account the needs of disadvantaged children and have a positive impact on their achievements and aspirations.
Appropriate planning will be in place to address the needs of  Pupil Premium children who are also identified as having SEND or social and emotional needs.
  • Whole school profile will identify which children fall into multiple vulnerable groups.
  • Staff are aware of all children in one or more than one vulnerable groups and provide appropriate support for their academic or social/emotional needs..

Activity in this academic year

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

Teaching (for example, CPD, recruitment and retention)

Budgeted cost: £14,596 to employ a Thrive Practitioner. 

Activity Evidence that supports this approach Challenge number(s) addressed
Improve the quality of social and emotional learning through:

1. Thrive – embed our whole school approach.

2. Outdoor Learning – enhance character education, personal development and enrich the curriculum offer

There is extensive evidence associating childhood social and emotional skills with improved outcomes at school and in later life (e.g., improved academic performance, attitudes, behaviour and relationships with peers).

Education Endowment Foundation (EEF):

Improving Social and Emotional Learning in Primary Schools


The benefits of Thrive

  1. Experience the personal and professional rewards of helping children and young people to regulate their own behaviour and learn about their emotions.
  2. Reduce exclusions and improve attendance and achievement levels by helping children and young people to engage with education.
  3. Strengthen links with parents and carers by offering Family Thrive courses to ensure a joined-up approach to supporting children and young people’s emotional and social needs.
Sustaining high quality first teaching in reading, to improve outcomes for children (particularly disadvantaged children) at the end of EYS and KS1 Where high Quality First teaching (QFT) is outstanding in school, children, including disadvantaged children attain age related expectations and above. As an approach this needs to be consistent and maintained throughout every class in school.

This is supported by the EEF document, ‘The Attainment Gap’ (2017), which states that the ‘Quality of teaching is the biggest driver of pupil attainment, particularly for those from a disadvantaged background’ and goes on to discuss research to support this.

Good teaching is the most important lever schools have to improve outcomes for disadvantaged pupils. Using the Pupil Premium to improve teaching quality benefits all students and has a particularly positive effect on children eligible for the Pupil Premium.’

EEF:   Preparing for Literacy

Strengthening the teaching and acquisition of vocabulary across all subject areas, so that all children can access the ambitious school curriculum. Research has shown that there is a direct link between language acquisition by the age of 3 and outcomes in later life, (including academic, health & well-being, employment).

The development of language as a precursor to writing is supported by a new report ‘Talking About a Generation, from The Communication Trust, which identifies the development of language as key, particularly for disadvantaged children. The new approaches in place focus on continued development of communication and language as a precursor to future successes in Literacy.

‘The EEF toolkit suggests that oral language interventions which include – targeted reading aloud and discussing books with young children, explicitly extending pupils’ spoken vocabulary and the use of structured questioning to develop reading comprehension can improve outcomes by up to 5 months.

Enhancement of our maths teaching and curriculum planning in line with DfE and EEF guidance.

We will fund teacher release time to embed key elements of guidance in school and to access Maths Hub  (GNMH) resources and to engage in an additional cross-school maths project looking at personalising our curriculum.

The DfE non-statutory guidance has been produced in conjunction with the National Centre for Excellence in the Teaching of Mathematics (NCETM), drawing on evidence-based approaches:

Maths_guidance_KS_1_and_2.pdf (publishing.service.gov.uk)


Improving Mathematics in the Early Years and Key Stage 1

Improving Mathematics in Key Stages 2 and 3

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

Budgeted cost: £22,000 towards cost of 3 TAs to provide 1:1 or 1:2 support.

Activity Evidence that supports this approach Challenge number(s) addressed
Small group and 1-1 targeted support through Thrive individual and small group programmes. In addition to our whole school approach, evidence base suggests that some children require more personalised programmes in order to maximise impact. We have set up a Thrive Hive classroom with Thrive practitioners to facilitate this.

Thrive – impact base on evidence


Improving Social and Emotional Learning in Primary Schools

KS2 small groups  to support core skill acquisition, social and emotional development and readiness to learn that has been impacted following covid disruption.

The approaches we follow work best in small groups with the children we have identified and who are most in need of this targeted support.

Building on the recommendations from Improving Literacy in Key Stage 1 (EEF), the 7 practical evidence-based recommendations from the KS2 document include –

Purposeful speaking and listening activities support the development of pupils’ language capability and provides a foundation for thinking and communication. Purposeful activities include:

  • reading books aloud and discussing them;
  • activities that extend pupils’ expressive and receptive vocabulary;
  • collaborative learning activities where pupils can share their thought processes;
  • structured questioning to develop reading comprehension;
  • teachers modelling inference-making by thinking aloud; and
  • pupils articulating their ideas verbally before they start writing.

Evidence from the EEF’s Teaching and Learning Toolkit suggests that effective SEL can lead to learning gains of +4 months over the course of a year.

Embed the reading programme ‘Reading plus’ for Year 3 pupils Although most children are able readers by the time they reach Year 3, some, particularly the disadvantaged group, need more focus on fluency and comprehension.

EEF – ‘Support pupils to develop fluent reading capabilities’

Fluent readers can read quickly, accurately, and with appropriate stress and intonation.

Fluent reading supports comprehension because pupils’ cognitive resources are freed from focusing on word recognition and can be redirected towards comprehending the text.

This can be developed through:

  • guided oral reading instruction — teachers model fluent reading of a text, then pupils read the same text aloud with appropriate feedback; and
  • repeated reading — pupils reread a short and meaningful passage a set number of times or until they reach a suitable level of fluency.
  • It is important to understand pupils’ current capabilities and teach accordingly. Most pupils will need an emphasis on developing reading fluency, but some pupils may need a focus on more basic skills, such as decoding and phonological awareness.


Improving Literacy in Key Stage 2

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

Budgeted cost: £1,334 as a contingency.  (Behaviour interventions will be funded from within the budget) 

Activity Evidence that supports this approach Challenge number(s) addressed
Children are provided with experiences and opportunities to develop skills which will support their personal development by embedding effective, purposeful wider opportunities across the curriculum, in order to further develop children’s knowledge and breadth of vocabulary. The EEF toolkit suggests that from wider involvement in the arts, improved outcomes have been identified in English, mathematics and science learning. Wider benefits on attitudes to learning and wellbeing have also consistently been reported.

Participating in sports and physical activity is also likely to have wider health and social benefits. Further evidence taken from the EEF’s Teaching and Learning Toolkit supports that collaborative learning through such experiences have a consistently positive impact on pupils.

These actions will therefore support with addressing the barriers to learning that are linked to poor fine and gross motor skills, poor fitness and diet and children’s low self-efficacy attributes

Continue to support the individual needs of all of our children by developing consistently strong practice across school, including those early in their career, in managing the behaviour of pupils with specific needs, resulting in an improvement in teacher confidence and knowledge. Improving behaviour in schools (EEF 2019) identifies strategies to support and understand children’s behaviours and recognises that classroom management alongside adapting individual approaches for high needs children are just some ways – based upon evidence of improving behaviour and therefore outcomes. The teaching and learning toolkit recognises that behaviour interventions can improve progress by up to 3 months.

A whole school approach to teaching behaviour (Tom Bennett “Running the Room”), restorative practice and recognition (Paul Dix “When the Adults Change..”) also form part of our research base in shaping behaviour practice in school.

Contingency fund for acute issues Based on our experiences we have identified a need to set a small amount of funding aside to respond quickly and effectively to needs that have not yet been identified.

Total budgeted cost: £37,930

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 2020 to 2021 academic year.

Early reading

Adjustments were made to our agreement for early reading approaches and progression. As a result, the approach to reading was slightly altered in Reception and Ready to Read book bags shared with all the children. This had a very positive impact on the children and parents loved the new approach and engagement was high.

Reading for pleasure

Our new ‘Reading for Pleasure’ lead provided advice and guidance for staff regarding book choice, teaching texts. Although we feel this now needs to be reviewed, it had a very positive impact across the school, particularly on story times. The children and staff are enjoying this renewed, rigorous focus. Reading Plus and reciprocal reading is in place in Key Stage 2 and has undoubtedly enhanced the provision for the children by developing their fluency and comprehension.

Maths mastery

We have now taken part in the mastery programme through Great North Maths Hub for the past 2 years and we are about to enter the third year. The children, particularly disadvantaged and SEND groups, are finding this approach to bring great benefit to their understanding, fluency and problem solving skills in maths. As a result, we are now really seeing the benefits of the mastery approach; the children love maths, can talk about it with knowledge and understanding, and they can apply what they have learned.


During last academic year, two members of staff successfully trained as Thrive Practitioners. Despite lockdowns and associated disruptions, they disseminated CPD (professional development/training) to the staff team and the whole school approach was launched. This brought significant benefits to the children, particularly in supporting their well-being and self-regulation during times of huge disruption. Our adoption of the Zones of Regulation also supports this approach and when combined with Thrive, we find  this to be a powerful resource to support the children (and staff).

Subject leadership

Although the lockdowns and subsequent restrictions caused some disruption to our partnership work, staff at Abbeyfields used their time effectively to continue with planning and sequencing their subjects. Virtual meetings and access to virtual CPD supported this. Curriculum development has enhanced the offer we have and although we accept that we will always seek to improve and adapt to need, leaders have produced a curriculum that provides a level playing field for all learners.

Small group and 1-1 interventions

Obviously numbers of pupils, particularly disadvantaged pupils, varied during the periods of lockdown. Once school opened more widely in March, small group and 1:1 interventions became more viable. Focus was given to gaps in phonics, stamina for writing and pre=teaching in maths.

Health and well-being for pupils and staff

Thrive and Zones of Regulation massively supported the children during this time. using the vocabulary of ‘I wonder, I notice, I imagine’ was heard across the school and gave reassurance to the children who felt that their concerns and actions were being understood. We reviewed marking and feedback once again, removing the need for any written feedback, much preferring ‘in the moment’ and instant feedback. Much more effective and manageable. The Abbeyfields Well-Being Plan continued to support both pupil and staff well-being through a variety of actions such as a reduction of staff meeting times (virtual), fun days to boost well-being and visitors to school such as the Circus/Big Top in July 2021.


Needless to say, once the school reopened more widely, attendance and punctuality was amazing – everyone was so pleased to be back at school. We have since had fewer leave of absence requests and attendance remains excellent. The only negative impact we have had is a further covid outbreak in September/October 2021, when 32 children and 8 staff were absent due to the virus.

2020-2021 – impact of Covid-19

The pandemic undoubtedly caused disruption for Abbeyfields, as it did for all schools. Year groups were affected to varying degrees due to the number of cases/outbreaks we faced from March 2020-July 2021. As with schools across the country, school closure was most detrimental to some of our disadvantaged pupils. Despite our efforts to ensure home learning was accessible and technology was provided, they were of course not able to benefit from the quality first teaching and targeted interventions that we had intended for them.

Our recovery curriculum last academic year aimed at key areas of learning and knowledge for each subject to address learning loss and gaps for all pupils, including disadvantaged pupils (Daily Expectations March 2021). Our curriculum work across the school and the Trust was also slightly impacted by COVID-19 related issues. This year we will continue to look at progression within subjects across the school, looking at building on prior learning, extending vocabulary and language, and identifying key concepts (non-negotiables) in each subject.

Our internal assessments and observations indicated that pupil well being, behaviour and mental health were significantly impacted last year, mainly due to COVID-19 related issues. Our recovery curriculum and Pupil Premium strategy for this year will also focus on these issues.

Externally provided programmes

Please include the names of any non-DfE programmes that you purchased in the previous academic year. This will help the Department for Education identify which ones are popular in England

Programme Provider
Thrive Approach Thrive
Reading Plus Adaptive Reading Programme Reading Plus/DreamBox
Read Write Inc RWI Phonics

Further information (optional)

Additional activity

During lockdowns due to covid-19, support was given to all pupils, with a particular focus on disadvantaged and SEND pupils:

  • disadvantaged/SEND pupils were given priority for school places
  • access to technology (chromebooks) where needed or requested
  • remote education was in place for all children, live lessons offered
  • home learning was set on the Purple Mash platform. DSL and teachers monitored access to this and contacted families to offer support and encouragement if access was irregular or non-existent
  • assemblies were recorded and sent out
  • DSL and class teachers made regular contact with families to check on well-being
  • DSL and class teachers made regular contact with families to discuss work, strategies, make suggestions, delivered work packs etc.
  • support staff worked 1:1 remotely with some pupils
  • the DSL liaised closely with the EWO regarding any concerns over attendance or non-contact. This was supportive to families and school
  • meals and food hampers were delivered to disadvantaged children
  • a keeping in touch document was shared between staff and senior leaders for each class. Each call and conversation was recorded on this document and any subsequent actions identified and followed up

Our pupil premium strategy this academic year will be supplemented by additional activity that is not being funded by pupil premium or recovery premium. This will include:

  • reading for pleasure focus across school and a review of teaching texts in line with our curriculum drivers
  • access to the schools library service to supplement and enhance the books we have on offer across the curriculum
  • engagement with mastering number programme with GNMH. Our PTA, Friends of Abbeyfields, have donated additional funds for maths equipment
  • joint, focussed CPD with another Trust first school to support subject leaders and curriculum development
  • development of pastoral plans across the school to ensure all pupils, including disadvantaged and SEND, benefit from wider opportunities to complement and enhance their core learning
  • Thrive and Brain Science
  • maximise the use of our new Outdoor Education Centre to include curriculum delivery in subjects such as science, geography field skills and design technology
  • PP pupil voice sessions with PP lead – Autumn Term have focused on issues linked to SDP. Children identifying their own strengths and areas for development within their new year groups, how they have settled, career aspirations and what they enjoy reading for pleasure at home. Pupil Premium – self assessment Autumn Term 2021 – Anonymised
  • to support subject leaders and PP lead – we have carried out termly teacher assessment of PP premium pupils in their well being, also in core subjects (years 1-4) and Prime areas, literacy and maths (EYS) Pupil Premium Teacher Assessment Autumn Term 2021 – Anonymised

Updated: November 2021