Summer School Report 2021

The Leigh UTC facilitated a Summer School from Monday 26th July 2021 to Friday 30th July 2021 for all transitioning students due to join our school community from September 2021. 

We recognise that transitioning to a secondary setting can be challenging for many of our students and that the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic increased this challenge further. Our new students have missed a significant amount of time during both Year 5 and Year 6 and so have likely missed valuable opportunities in preparing for secondary school life. 

Our Summer School event allowed us an opportunity to meet and prepare the newest members of our school community ahead of their arrival in September 2021. We felt this was necessary to support our new students in establishing familiarity with their new school setting as well as to develop new and meaningful relationships with new teachers and peers.

Number of students invited:

128

Number of students accepted:

85

Funding allocated:

£59.70 per day per pupil = £25,372.50

Funding eligible to claim:

Days attended = 348
348 x £59.70 = £20,775.60

Breakdown of funding claimed

The Leigh UTC claimed £22,053.42 from the Department of Education Summer School Funding scheme. This funding was used to ensure appropriate levels of staffing were available each day of the Summer School event, including specialist teaching staff, support and pastoral teams, restaurant team members and members of the school’s administration team. A small amount of the claim was allocated to resourcing practical activities and experiments in addition to rewards and prizes for students, including certificates. All students that attended were provided with a cooked lunch and refreshments throughout the day at no charge to students or their families.

Details of the Summer School

Students that attended the Summer School were arranged into their Tutor Groups ahead of their start in September 2021. This allowed students to spend time each day with their new peer groups alongside their Form Tutor and their Student Service Manager with both staff being key pastoral personnel for the students when they join us in the new academic year. This helped students to familiarise themselves with key adults ahead of their arrival. All staff were briefed with important details pertaining to special educational needs, disabilities and safeguarding concerns and each class was further supported by a Teaching Assistant or Learning Mentor.

The Summer School was led by the Head of College (Mr Freeman) and the Assistant Head of College (Mr Blyth). Both are Deputy Designated Safeguarding Leads. Mr Blyth as SENDCo was further supported by members of the wider SEND Team and the Transition Lead (Mrs Wilton) who had worked closely with students, their parents / carers and primary teachers ahead of the Summer School event. 

Students in attendance followed a ‘traditional’ weekly timetable allowing them the opportunity to experience a normal school day whilst no other students were present on site. The Restaurant Team provided a daily catering service to help students familiarise themselves with daily processes involved at break and lunchtimes. Staff attended all meal times with students to further develop positive relationships throughout the school day. 

Students attended lessons such as English, Maths, Science, Computing, Engineering, German, Humanities, PE and Art at least twice throughout the week. All lessons linked to our STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics) specialisms as well as introducing the students to our Learner Attributes aligned to the IB Middle Years Programme – more specifically the attributes of being open-minded, caring, principled and reflective. These allow our students to recognise and become part of our inclusive school community. Three assemblies were delivered during the week and an Awards Ceremony was facilitated for all students on the final day of the week where positive behaviours and engagement were celebrated by all. 

On the final day, students reported that they were happy with their choice of secondary school and that any worries or concerns had been dissolved. Students were particularly positive about the catering offer at lunchtime, the variety of practical activities offered and the number of new friendships that had been made.