Westminster Academy

1. Introduction

Westminster Academy was the national secondary winner in the 2013 Pupil Premium Awards. It is an International Business and Enterprise Academy in London. In 2012-13 73% of pupils were eligible for the pupil premium and the school attracted £386,572 in pupil premium funding.

The Academy is located in one of the top 5% most deprived areas in the country.

2. What do they do?

The Academy develops students through a rich and diverse curriculum. Each intervention is personalised according to individuals’ needs. This child-centred ethos has permeated throughout the Academy over a number of years.

Examples of interventions funded through the pupil premium include:

  • additional training for staff in differentiation within the classroom with a focus on Assessment for Learning
  • support for students, for example through mental health workers, speech and language therapists, educational psychologists, phonics tuition, small group maths and English intervention, tightly monitored alternative provision, home visits, other forms of family support and extra-curricular motivational activities.

Interventions were monitored by looking at attainment data as well as looking at other indicators such as behaviour.

3. Impact

In 2013 69% of Westminster Academy’s students achieved 5 or more GCSEs at A* to C including English and mathematics, and 64% of their disadvantaged pupils achieved this benchmark against a national average of 59.2% for all pupils.

4. What next?

The Academy plans to develop its own pupil premium centre onsite, which will be used to provide additional interventions in a specialised setting. This may include reading schemes for students eligible for the pupil premium with low literacy, therapeutic support for those with emotional barriers and masterclasses or Oxbridge preparation classes for those students who are Gifted and Talented. The centre could also be used to train staff on how to deliver personalised and targeted interventions to achieve maximum impact

Anita Bjelica, Associate Principal, says:
At Westminster Academy, the additional funding through the pupil premium enabled us to work on fulfilling our vision of shaping responsible, successful, independent and lifelong global citizens. Academically, students benefited from access to well-planned and -taught targeted interventions classes. Spiritually, morally, socially, culturally and physically we were able to provide 297 enrichment and empowerment opportunities ranging from Summer School for Year 6 students to University Study Courses for older students.