Covid-19 ‘Catch up’
In June 2020, a £1 billion fund for education was announced by the government. Further guidance has now been released https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-catch-up-premium showing that the money is split between a catch-up premium and a national tutoring scheme.
The catch-up premium is funded on a per pupil basis at £80 per pupil. The spending of this money will be down to schools to allocate as they see best. To support schools to make the best use of this funding, the Education Endowment Foundation has published a support guide for schools with evidence-based approaches to catch up for all students.
At St Catherine’s, this money will be used in order to:
- Fund support staff to develop the outcomes of children who have been identified as needing “catch up” in their learning, this will include a focus on:
- Wellbeing (PSHE) to help pupils feel settled and supported.
- Reading – As reading is a priority, we will continue to promote reading, including phonics through a recovery plan for pupils who need it, particularly in Years 1 to 3. In addition, pupils will have exposure to high quality texts to develop both comprehension skills and extend vocabulary, which can be used in writing
- Writing – with a specific focus on sentence structure, punctuation, spelling and handwriting
- Maths – our key focus is on number: Place Value, 4 operations developing both fluency and reasoning
The broad aims for “catch up” at St Catherine’s:
- Attainment outcomes at end of 2020-21 for all year groups will be at least in line with those at the point of lockdown in March. This means that if a child was working at an age-related expectation in a subject in March they are working at least to an age-related expectation in that same subject by the end of the year.
- By the end of the 2021-22 year, attainment outcomes for all year groups will be at least in line with those at the end of the 2019-20 year.
- The mental health needs of pupils that have arisen as a result of the pandemic are met and supported by the school.
Catch Up at St Catherine’s is
(For all children)
- Working through well sequenced, purposeful learning schemes. We are working within the Write Stuff approach for writing, which has a clear focus on sentence structure and developing vocabulary. In maths, we will utilise the Power Maths Scheme as our spine of learning and we have been able to use catch up premium to purchase White Rose Maths which we can further adapt our Power Maths
- Focus on consolidation of basic skills. The core skills which enable successful learning will sometimes require increased curriculum time across all year groups. These include: handwriting, spelling of high frequency words, basic sentence punctuation, times tables recall, basic addition & subtraction fact recall and reading skills relevant to age.
- Particular focus on early reading and phonics. This is always a focus in the school and will continue to be so in order to develop children’s reading ability and vocabulary.
- Assessment of learning and of basic skills to identify major gaps. Teachers will work to identify gaps in learning and adapt teaching accordingly.
- Time spent on mental health, wellbeing and social skills development. This will be at the core of all catch up work as many children will have not been in formal school setting for a number of months.
(For some children)
- Additional support and focus on basic core skills. Supported by additional staffing utilising catch up premium – dependent on need as identified through ongoing assessment.
- Additional time to practise basic skills. This again will be dependent on need of children in order to re-establish good progress in the essentials (phonics and reading, increasing vocabulary, writing and mathematics) and there will be flexibility on timetables to allow this.
Catch up at St Catherine’s IS NOT:
- Cramming missed learning
- Pressuring children and families into rapid learning
- Teachers time spent highlighting missed objectives
- Teachers time spent ticking off assessment points and extra tracking