Pupil Premium Strategy

"Pupil Premium funds are used consistently well to help eligible pupils achieve as well as, and often better than, their peers" - Ofsted

Key Principles for the use of the Pupil Premium at Aston Fields Middle School 

  • The school never confuses eligibility for the pupil premium with low ability, and focuses on supporting disadvantaged pupils to achieve the highest levels.
  • The school thoroughly analyses which pupils are underachieving, particularly in English, mathematics and science, and why.
  • The school drew, and draws upon, evidence from its own, and others' experience in order to allocate funding to activities that are most likely to have an impact on improving pupils' achievement.
  • The school uses achievement data regularly and robustly, to check whether interventions or techniques are working and makes adjustments accordingly. The school does not simply use data retrospectively to see if something has worked.
  • The school ensures that a designated senior leader, Head of School/Acting Headteacher, plus the Executive Leader/Headteacher/Consultant National Leader of Education and governors, have a clear overview of how funding is allocated. They review the difference it is making to the outcomes of pupils on a half-termly basis.
  • The school ensures that class and subject teachers know which pupils are eligible for the pupil premium so that they can take responsibility for accelerating progress.
  • The school successfully uses pupil premium funding to tackle a range of issues, e.g. attendance, behaviour, confidence, mental health, wellbeing, resilience, reading, factors outside of school, professional training for staff on helping disadvantaged pupils, effective teaching and learning, literacy support, targeted support, further enrichment and so on.

The impact of the use of pupil premium funding is always measured and reviewed and Ofsted noted how successful the school is in this area:

"The progress of students eligible for additional funding is rapid in both English and mathematics. Extra help is provided through one-to-one tuition, in class support and the employment of additional teachers and this has reduced the attainment gap between these students and others across all years. Consequently, students receiving additional support achieve as well as and sometimes better than their peers."

The Governing Body has spent (during previous academic years) and is spending (during the current academic year) the school's Pupil Premium funding in the following ways:

  • Employing additional staff to provide extra support for Pupil Premium pupils.
  • Funding an Intervention Manager post to overview and account for the Pupil Premium pupils.
  • Setting up, staffing and maintaining a specialist support room.
  • Purchasing additional resources to support English and mathematics for Pupil Premium pupils.
  • Providing small group tuition, support and catch-up programmes.
  • Paying for supply costs for key staff to attend Early Help meetings to support Pupil Premium pupils.
  • Paying for transition projects for Pupil Premium pupils.
  • Creating and extending a brand new Lead Teacher for Disadvantaged Pupils.

The Governing Body rigorously monitors the progress of disadvantaged pupils and the impact of the school's Pupil Premium Strategy. This is done on a termly basis.

Pupil Premium: Progress of Disadvantaged Pupils – diminishing differences at AFMS

Progress for Disadvantaged Pupils over time at AFMS (2022 exit data)

  Maths English
  AFMS Main Cohort ('other' pupils) AFMS Disadvantaged AFMS Main Cohort ('other' pupils) AFMS Disadvantaged
% at National Expectations
on arrival in Y5
72 46 87 68
% at Age Related Expectations on exit in Y8 95 94 96 93
% expected progress over 4 years at AFMS 100 100 92 85
% exceeded expected progress over 4 years at AFMS 75 64 33 68


Progress for Disadvantaged Pupils over time at AFMS (2021 exit data)

  Maths Reading
  AFMS Main Cohort ('other' pupils)

AFMS Disadvantaged

AFMS Main Cohort ('other' pupils)
AFMS Disadvantaged
% at National Expectations
on entry in Y5


44 92 44
% at Age Related Expectations on exit in Y8 95 88 94 83
% expected progress over 4 years at AFMS 100 100 93 94
% exceeded expected progress over 4 years at AFMS 82 83 35 76

 The tables above show the outstanding progress of Disadvantaged Pupils at Aston Fields Middle School and how differences have diminished significantly. In all areas, pupils are not only diminishing differences between 'other' pupils nationally, but also with their peers within the school.

What we have done to diminish differences:

  • Creation and continuation of an Interventions Manager post to oversee the progress of all pupils receiving pupil premium including most able.
  • Creation of a Lead Teacher for Disadvantaged Learners to support disadvantaged pupils in and out of school.
  • Funding to create and maintain the school’s specialist support room for pupils including disadvantaged pupils, including training for staff to support behaviour management, self-esteem training, circle of friends, healthy lifestyles and safe choices, mentoring etc.
  • Additional resources purchased for maths & English (on-going) to support disadvantaged pupils, including Most Able disadvantaged pupils.
  • Increased TA support in targeted groups.
  • Renaissance Reading set up and continued for targeted pupils (PP).
  • Rapid Maths set up and placed in targeted sets in KS2 & 3.
  • Sumdog set up and continued for targeted pupils in KS2 & 3.
  • Increased Academic Guidance and Personal Development  for disadvantaged pupils with a focus on diminishing the differences and supporting Most Able disadvantaged pupils.
  • Funded Early Intervention Family Support Worker was based at AFMS last year, helping to improve home school partnership with disadvantaged pupils benefitting greatly.
  • Continuing highly effective partnership with main feeder ‘Outstanding’ High School to fund and maintain a joint attendance officer to ensure disadvantaged pupils get the most out of school through increased attendance. This has clearly had a significant impact (attendance data).
  • On-going funding for school trips, equipment and to improve participation in lessons and outside for disadvantaged pupils.
  • Y4/5 transition projects to support pupils whose circumstances make them vulnerable and disadvantaged pupils in their move to Aston Fields. This involved the creation of, and subsequent maintenance of, transition projects with the high school mentioned above. This helps to support pupils during their final year at AFMS and includes staff from AFMS working with high school staff, so KS5 pupils can become Peer Mentors for disadvantaged pupils once they arrive at high school.

Note: As a National Support School, Aston Fields Middle School supports other schools in improving outcomes for disadvantaged pupils and was one of three schools asked to speak at a recent LA Conference on the effective use of Pupil Premium funding along with Sir John Dunford, former National Pupil Premium Champion.


Pupil Premium funding is enabling the school to diminish differences for Pupil Premium pupils compared to 'other' pupils nationally and within the school. As a result, they are now doing better and differences are diminishing. The school would also not have a specialist support room or designated Lead Teacher for Disadvantaged Pupils Intervention Manager without this funding.

The Governing Body monitors the impact of the school's Pupil Premium Strategy and outcomes for pupils on a termly basis and Mr G Wigley is the governor link person for Pupil Premium. Mrs Hales, Head of School/Acting Headteacher is the person in school responsible for Pupil Premium. Please contact her if you would like further information on Pupil Premium.

The school's Pupil Premium Strategy can be found here

The Governing Body
September 2022

Year 7 Catch-up Funding

At Aston Fields Middle School we receive additional funding from the Department for Education to provide literacy and numeracy catch-up support for those pupils who did not achieve the national average (level 4 up until the academic year 2014/15) in reading, writing and/or mathematics in Year 6.
We use the money we receive in the following ways to ensure these pupils are given the opportunity to make accelerated progress and catch-up their peers as quickly as possible:

Additional specialist support has been introduced in both maths and English in Year 7. This includes the teaching of Rapid Maths to improve pupils' core skills in mathematics and the continuation of a reading scheme to encourage pupils to read widely and often.

Booster sessions have been introduced to narrow gaps and enable pupils to make accelerated progress.
Additional resources have been purchased in maths and English to support the achievement of these pupils. Examples are the purchase of Rapid Maths and Sumdog (Literacy) for targeted pupils.
Additional staff training for teaching of these intervention programmes.


Year 7 Catch-up funding is enabling the school to ensure pupils who did not meet the required standard in their KS2 tests make accelerated progress in Year 7, catching up their peers rapidly. As a result, these pupils leave Aston Fields Middle School with results in line with their peers in Year 8.

Year 7 Catch-up Funding Received:

2019/20  £10,000

Please note that we did not receive catch-up funding in 2020-21 or 2021-22 due to the cancellation of KS2 SATs in 2020. This statement reflects previous years' strategy. However, the school continues to support all pupils it identifies as not meeting age related expectations.


Coronavirus (COVID-19) Recovery Premium

We are spending the grant in the following ways:

• Targeted online tutoring through the National Tutoring Programme and the school's own recovery intervention scheme
• Resources to support in-school and online learning, including improving pupil access to technology through the purchase of laptops and 4G dongles 
• Purchasing licenses for online programs, subject-specific software and applications that pupils can access at home
• The purchase of webcams and visualisers for staff to improve remote learning
• Additional support for pupils’ mental health & wellbeing and to encourage good attendance
• Planning time to ensure our plan for remote learning is robust and supports all learners
• Additional staff training to support the remote delivery of the curriculum, as well as to support pupils' mental health and well-being
• Supporting poor attenders to improve their attendance and expanding the roles of the school's welfare teams

We assess the effect of the expenditure on pupils’ attainment in termly review meetings with governors.


The Governing Body monitors the impact of Pupil Premium, Year 7 and Coronavirus Recovery funding and outcomes for pupils very closely and Mr G Wigley is the governor link individual responsible for all of the above. Mrs Hales, Head of School/Acting Headteacher is the person in school responsible for Pupil Premium, Year 7 and Coronavirus Recovery Funding. Please contact her if you would like further information.

The Governing Body
September 2022








AFMS Main Cohort

(‘other’ pupils


AFMS Disadvantaged Maths

AFMS Main Cohort

(‘other’ pupils) Reading

AFMS Disadvantaged Reading

AFMS Main Cohort (‘other’ pupils)     Writing

AFMS Disadvantaged Writing
% at National Expectations on entry in Y5 59 41

68 32 

54 36

% at Age Related Expectations on exit in  Y8 89 88

95 96

89 89

% expected progress over 4 years at AFMS 96 96 88 85 98 96
% exceeded expected progress over 4 years at AFMS 55 55 49 59 56  51