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PPG spending?

Discussion in 'Headteachers' started by mms1, Jul 20, 2019.

  1. mms1

    mms1 Occasional commenter

    Hi all,
    Have any of you spent your PPG in a less conventional way (as opposed to funding interventions) and if so what did you spend it on?

    I have a challenging budget to say the least and my classrooms are looking tired with furniture from the 70s that is frankly depressing to look at least of all sit at for 6 hours a day.

    Can I legitimately spend PPG on the learning environment?

    My governors aren't keen to spend PPG on furniture as they argue it doesn't provide an obvious impact measure.


    Thanks all
  2. dunnocks

    dunnocks Star commenter

    no, I wouldn't consider that an appropriate use of the funds at all.
  3. mms1

    mms1 Occasional commenter

    That was my feeling;however, I can't ignore the research around the potential impact the learning environment can have. I inherited a deficit budget that's left us stretched, just like many of you. I've committed most of my PPG to direct interventions and access to enrichment. I have £2,700 left.
  4. sooooexcited

    sooooexcited Established commenter

    One example is that I had 2 PP boys who couldn't focus in lessons, fidgeted constantly etc so thought standing desks using PP funding. When OFSTED came, they were completely happy that the money had been spent to increase their concentration and focus which did increase progress and attainment.
    You couldn't justify it for general upgrades etc but if you ant to buy something specifically designed to enhance outcomes etc then go for it!
  5. caterpillartobutterfly

    caterpillartobutterfly Star commenter

    Can you use some of it to refurbish one classroom and assess/prove the impact?
    Then use the rest to do other rooms?
  6. mms1

    mms1 Occasional commenter

    It's not even about fudging it; for me it's not rocket science to assert that an uncomfortable chair, a table that's wobbly and with 20 plus years of scratches and stains will definitely have a negative impact on progress.

    I like caterpillar's idea to test the theory on one room.

    Has anyone else used their PPG on less conventional projects?

    Thanks to everyone that's contributed so far.
  7. caterpillartobutterfly

    caterpillartobutterfly Star commenter

    We only have PP in nursery as we are an independent school. (No we don't question how children entitled to PP money end up at our school...we just enjoy a little bit of money!)
    We bought bikes, storage chests for outdoors, water trays and that kind of thing.

    So certainly things that will benefit those children with PP, but everyone else as well.
    I can't see a problem with your spending to be honest...the environment matters.
  8. R13

    R13 Occasional commenter

    I would have thought you might have some difficulty justifying how a general refurbishment will help the pupil premium children catch up with the non pupil premium grant . . . . which is what the grant is for.
  9. mms1

    mms1 Occasional commenter

    My school has much higher than average levels of deprivation and one of my classes is 62% PPG! Agreed, we are a small school but 62% still represents the majority of children in that class.
  10. R13

    R13 Occasional commenter

    And I for one would happily see your school better funded because of that MMS1 - I'm merely pointing out that IF someone such as an Inspector were to investigate PPG spending what they should be looking for in your case is whether the spending helped close the results gap between your 2% and the other 38%.
    My experience is if that 'gap' isn't significant no one really bothers looking . . . but if it is they are supposed to do so
  11. caterpillartobutterfly

    caterpillartobutterfly Star commenter

    We worked with the idea that the PPG should improve outcomes for those eligible.
    If the spending happened to improve outcomes for everyone else as well, then even better.

    If you have 62% PPG, then presumably the other 38% aren't streets ahead, so you'd be fine.
  12. R13

    R13 Occasional commenter

    I can see that as a reasonable pint of view Caterpillartobutterfly but the express purpose is to 'close the gap'. So an initiative that uses money intended to give poor children an opportunity to catch up but instead maintains the differential is an unsuccessful one. If your middle class children get a B and your working class kids get an E the idea of PPG is to then ensure your working class children can get 'B' too - not to help everyone improve equally.
  13. caterpillartobutterfly

    caterpillartobutterfly Star commenter

    I can see that point of view as well. However, if there isn't a gap to close, then improving outcomes for all makes sense.

    At 62% PPG, then over half the pupils will attain more with the better environment, which will allow them to catch up when compared nationally, whatever happens with their peers. So 'closing the gap' between current attainment and potential attainment for those pupils.

    I would spend the money on the environment, if it seemed the best use to me as head.
    You wouldn't spend the money on the environment.
    Hey ho... you'd probably spend it on things I'd never have thought of and vice versa.
    Only the OP can decide in this case...or whoever actually holds the purse strings in their school! ;)
  14. R13

    R13 Occasional commenter

    If there is no gap to close - then congratulations to all and no Inspector of PPG should be doing anything other than congratulating the school.

    Personally I think the rules were brought in by people who didn't realise that schools where pupils on PPG were in the majority could exist!!

    Thanks for your comments
  15. caterpillartobutterfly

    caterpillartobutterfly Star commenter

    I think you are probably right! :)
  16. mms1

    mms1 Occasional commenter

    Thanks to everyone that contributed, all very useful discussion points.

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