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Using the Pupil Premium to reduce inequalities in rates of school exclusion “ If you were a Black African-Caribbean boy with special needs and eligible.

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Presentation on theme: "Using the Pupil Premium to reduce inequalities in rates of school exclusion “ If you were a Black African-Caribbean boy with special needs and eligible."— Presentation transcript:

1 Using the Pupil Premium to reduce inequalities in rates of school exclusion “ If you were a Black African-Caribbean boy with special needs and eligible for free school meals you were 168 times more likely to be permanently excluded from a state-funded school than a White girl without special needs from a middle class family” (Office of the Children’s Commissioner, 2012, p.9). What Works? Developing evidence-based approaches to the Pupil Premium July 14 th 2014 Louise Gazeley and Tish Marrable

2 Background to the study Commissioned by the Office of the Children’s Commissioner for England as part of the 2 nd year of the enquiry into school exclusions Aimed to identify how to reduce inequalities in rates of recorded exclusion for: FSM; boys; SEN; specific ethnic groups Decline of 41% nationally in rates of permanent exclusion between 2006 and 2010 but only 24% for fixed term exclusions– and crucially inequalities for specific groups persist

3 Key ideas Exclusion from school not just an outcome, part of a complex process Strong association with social disadvantage Sometimes constructed as indicating individual/parental deficit rather than as an indication of underlying social and educational inequalities A contributory factor in poorer longer term outcomes Some overlap between the groups over- represented in school exclusion processes but the issues not entirely the same

4 “Generally speaking highly attaining and highly achieving students are not being permanently excluded or fixed term excluded from school… The biggest inequality is that students that don’t attend and don’t achieve are… over-represented.” (Local Authority stakeholder)

5 Small-scale, predominantly qualitative study in 4 stages Group interviews with 8 tutors in 2 university ITE departments located in large, ethnically diverse cities Telephone interviews with 7 Local Authority (LA) stakeholders in 4 LAs Review of recommendations, OFSTED reports, DfE performance data and school websites for 29 schools in 6 LAs, 12 approached Interviews with 55 staff and 53 young people in 6 schools. Review of school policy documents and available data on involvement in disciplinary processes

6 The six case study schools All six schools identified as having: Reduced recorded exclusions Had a positive impact on the progress made by at least one over-represented group Five schools located in ethnically diverse cities and: Free School Meals above national average (16%) - highest 39.5% English as an Additional Language above national average (12.9%) - highest 69.4% SEN above national average (8.1%) - highest 14.7%

7 High level of awareness of challenges in the local context, yet maintaining positive approaches and providing positive representations of all groups “I mean you know we’re not a middle class leafy suburb, we’re in an inner city school with a high level of social deprivation, so you know, the level of need is quite high. We know that you know, from the outset.” (Staff, S4) “So we are a beautiful school. You know, I think our kids are beautiful but we are a challenging….we’re in a challenging area.” Staff, S5)

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9 Some challenges in identifying this as an equalities issue affecting this particular group 70% of pupils in the Pupil Referral Unit in one LA said to be FSM (as opposed to 16% nationally) Pupil Premium agenda important in raising the profile of FSM as a group – increased monitoring and support Investment with potential to feed into reductions in exclusion eg: learning mentors; attendance and behaviour support staff; counsellor; girls’ group; reading intrvention;1:1 support etc However, reduction in fixed term exclusions only specifically identified as an objective in one. Interventions included development of shared off-site centre and appointment of a TA to support subject-specific, post- exclusion reintegration in the classroom

10 “A lot of our kids are not going home to their own desk in their own bedroom. So we have after school facilities for children to stay and do their homework. There are constant initiatives in terms of intervention - be it we have a very short lunch time, or there’ll be an after school club, an after school catch up, there’s revision sessions, there’s focus weeks, there’s Saturday school for specific targeted groups for specific subjects. And if I say it goes on, I don’t mean that to sound negative - it’s whatever, whenever, however.” (Staff, S3)

11 Inclusive ethos and values - the willingness to keep looking for the one thing that will work “We as a school would always go the whole way because we would always look at it as if we’ve lost somebody, we’ve lost them because we’ve not done as much as we can.” (Staff, S6) So we just keep doing what we do. And if it doesn’t work you just keep, we try and find a different way. And we just hope that we can carry on doing it actually because of course once you’ve got that model that’s fine but you can’t coast because our kids wouldn’t let us.” (Staff, S3). “Here they made me see I could do something.” (Young person, S1)

12 Strong sense of enduring community responsibility - feeding into strong local networks and a collaborative approach “There is as a real determination not to exclude and to keep youngsters in their communities, a never give up on you approach. Very much, these are all our children – how are we collectively going to help? That’s its strength.” (LA stakeholder - about the local network being led from S1) “We know that the kids have got to survive out there when they leave us. They go to homes that are dysfunctional, that often they might be in a primary care role or there are all sorts of deficiencies at all sorts of levels. They could be drug and alcohol misuse issues with parents, extended family members, mental health issues, but while they’re in here we try not to leave them.” (Staff, S5)

13 Inclusive and proactive approaches to behaviour – with a focus that is preventative and restorative, based on relationships and trust “ The behaviour policy, in effect, is an ethos.” (Staff,S3) “It’s very much about, you know, giving them the opportunity to include themselves back.”(Staff, S3) “It’s the moving away from the punitive to being positive, so we like the kids to work towards something - towards a reward - rather than working away from a punishment.” (Staff, S5) “I think that we have a good relationship with our head of house. In other schools people like they don’t, they’re kind of afraid to go and talk to their counsellor. In our school it’s more comfortable to go to speak to a head of house about something. You’d be confident that you won’t be in danger.” (Young person, S4)

14 “But relationships is absolutely the key, and if we look back at the students who we’ve had to come to the point of saying, “not sure what else we can do” it’s because every single relationship has broken down. If there is still one person in this building that that young person will respond to and engage with, we keep going. And that could be a teaching assistant, it could be pastoral staff, it could be a teacher, as long as there’s somebody that can actually get them to listen and engage and try and own their own behaviour and change the way they behave, then we’ll hang on in there.” (Staff, S5)

15 Staff behaviours seen to model school ethos, so strong focus on monitoring and training “I think it was more than training, I think it was, this is the goal, it was that and we all need to accept that’s going to be the goal and then it was about people being allowed to be responsible for what the gaps were in their development, so that they could then meet that goal. But the first thing we had to do was say, look this is what it’s going to be, the children are going to behave in your classroom and you’re going to make sure they do.”(Staff, S3) “Students get that sense of fairness.” (Staff, S3) “The student can see that we will practice what we preach.” (Staff, S3) “They know that that line is coming, it just doesn’t suddenly appear, as I think in some schools it does.” (Staff, S4)

16 Strong sense that not all schools operate in the same way “One of the issues was that some schools would say ‘We have got to the end of the line’ and that line would be an awful lot shorter than a lot of other schools’ lines.” (Staff, S6) Our [trainees] have heard two different people talk in the first few weeks of the course, one of whom was very much, ‘We have zero tolerance and we’re proud of our exclusion rate’ and another who was ‘We are so pleased at how low our exclusion rate is and this is what we’ve done, de, de’ and just asking the students to critique that and not to give an opinion but … for them to think about what it means about those two schools and how it makes them feel. (ITE Tutor) “They think it’s a nice leafy suburb, it’ll be fine, and if it’s in the inner city, the kids will be unmanageable. Actually, they go in and they recognise that geography is so little of what the school ethos is about, it’s not that simple a relationship.” (Tutor, ITE1)

17 Strong focus on supporting transition from Primary to Secondary Considered particularly important in relation to SEN – and some disagreement about causes of difficulties eg: under-identification or level/type of support needed? Peer mentoring programmes eg: Year 9 scheme at School 2 Competency Curriculum at School 5 - skills for learning in Year 7 Vertical house system at School 3: “The older ones help the younger ones and the gang culture within our school has gone.” “We aim to identify every child that has an additional need really, during Year 6 … whatever that need is, if they need extra visits, then we facilitate that don’t we.” (Staff S4)

18 Rigorous data monitoring systems feed directly in to approaches to teaching and learning and behaviour, supporting the realisation of institutional goals around culture and ethos We’ve got the data there to pick it up and then to say, okay, what needs to happen here? Does he need to move class? Do we need to keep a closer eye on him? Do we need to take him out of certain times of the day, when he’s getting into trouble, maybe breaks or lunch- times? You know, do we need to speak to parents about this aspect of his behaviour? And all that data’s there to completely support it. (Staff, S3) You can have data. Don’t mean anything. You can just keep looking at it. You’ve actually got to do some work and you have to change. It’s about what you do with it. (Staff, S5)

19 Provision of high quality alternatives in a context of diversifaction and increased marketisation New opportunities such as Free School in one LA Changes to what counts in performance tables Changing role for established services “It’ll be interesting to see whether they put their money into the things that they are valuing at the moment or whether they choose to go elsewhere. There’s a lot of uncertainty for us in the position we’re in…we’re just sat there waiting for the market to unravel and find out what our fate is really.” (Local Authority Representative 2, LA4) What are the impacts of some of these things? Are we just putting kids into provision and then washing our hands of them? And actually is that having a positive impact? And there isn’t enough of that kind of evaluation and analysis. (Local Authority Representative 2, LA4)

20 “It’s really worked in our favour because there’s quite a few year 11 boys in the past who are bright boys, who should have been coming out with 5A*-Cs and who if we hadn’t have placed them out for that one day, and re- engaged them through something they’re interested in - which then has an effect on school because they’re more settled and they’re more focused and they’re doing what they should be doing - I think we could have lost some of those boys along the way… so it really does support, especially the boys.” (Staff, School 5)

21 For discussion 1.Do you feel that the Pupil Premium agenda does enough to focus attention on issues relating to school exclusion? 2.Which of the issues raised provide the most important areas for future research or evidence gathering in your view? 3.What do you think might need to change if this particular form of social and educational inequality is to be reduced?


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