Excellence Awards

15th November 2017 - Catch Up® Excellence Awards: Coedpenmaen Primary School, PONTYPRIDD - GOLD award winner

Organisation: Coedpenmaen Primary School
Intervention: Catch Up® Literacy, Catch Up® Numeracy
Submitted by: Mrs J Loveridge

Coedpenmaen is a mainstream primary school with additional intake at Year 3 from a local infants’ school. All children are screened at the end of Year 2 to identify any gaps in learning – ensuring that all Year 3 children start Key Stage 2 with the opportunity to fill gaps in basic skills, both in literacy and numeracy. The approach with Catch Up® we have taken at Coedpenmaen has shown that pupils’ confidence and basic skills improve considerably, and that this has a positive impact on pupils’ ability to function more effectively in the classroom. I only wish we could offer it to even more pupils!

Catch Up® holds a key role in the school’s provision for pupils who need intervention to build up their basic skills. To enable this to take place, well-trained staff are employed to deliver the interventions. Currently, these staff are supported through the Education Improvement and Pupil Development Grants. With pressures on budgets ever increasing, I aim to ensure that Catch Up® takes priority in discussions with regard to grant spending.
Specific times are allocated to these staff to support pupils on a one-to-one basis. These pupils are identified through a range of methods, which includes analysis of the Welsh Government Tests, Teacher assessment and teacher referral. From the initial assessments, targets for pupil development are identified and the programmes put in place. For almost all pupils, two sessions per week are timetabled. Monitoring of delivery has ensured that these sessions remain high quality, with the pupils gaining valuable skills as a result. Progress is monitored closely, with regular reports being shared with the Headteacher, where rates of progress are measured.
Governors are made aware of the provision through the school’s self-evaluation processes.
Identified staff attended the Management courses, which ensure that provision remains accurate and true to the core purpose of the Catch Up® intervention.
It is intended to continue to use the scheme as part of our exit strategy, to deliver continued support to pupils who have made progress through language support systems (as well as numeracy), but may not yet be ready, or confident enough, to access whole class teaching as a sole route to learning basic skills.
I would fully recommend the use of Catch Up® as an invaluable, successful addition to a school’s provision for more vulnerable learners.

Case Study 1 - Catch Up® Literacy
Child A had a chronological age of 7 years and 2 months when he started Catch Up® Literacy in September 2015. After completing the Salford reading test, his reading age was found to be 5 years and 4 months. This meant that his reading age was 22 months behind his chronological age. He was quite shy and read very slowly and quietly, struggling with any unfamiliar words. He also had quite a lot of time off school due to tonsillitis. When the final testing was finished in June 2016, his chronological age was then 8 years, and his reading age was 8 years and 3 months, which meant he was 3 months above where he should be; his overall gains were 35 months. He was a different reader altogether – he was much more fluent and didn’t stumble over many words, and if he came across an unfamiliar one, he knew what skill to use to help him decode it. His fluency also helped with his comprehension of the text and he definitely showed that he was enjoying reading much more at every session. When he finished, he was reading Catch Up® Literacy level 8 books. It was a pleasure to see the change in him.

Case Study 2 - Catch Up® Numeracy
Child B had a chronological age of 9 years and 3 months when she started Catch Up® Numeracy in September 2015. After completing a Basic Number Screening Test, her number age, due to raw score, was found to be 5 years and 4 months. This showed that Child B was 47 months behind her chronological age. Although considered originally as a unsuitable candidate for Catch Up®, (Child B had a high anxiety and emotional response and a fear of maths), it was then agreed that Child B was to be taken on a trial basis, to see if progress could be made, or if an improvement could be made on her anxiety. Child B was very quiet and lacked confidence, and was unable to establish the mathematical language and recognise numbers. She was very withdrawn within class and very reluctant to put her hand up to answer any questions, and was very emotional within a maths session. After numerous tests, Child B was proven to have Dyscalculia.

During the Catch Up® sessions, you could see that she slowly began having a better understanding and concept of maths, initially having a one-to-one session three times a week, then reducing to two. We slowly began seeing her anxiety decrease and confidence grow – and she had the biggest smile on her face when coming out for a Catch Up® Numeracy session. After final testing was done in January 2017, her chronological age was then 10 years 7 months and her BNST showed a Standardised Score raised from -70 to 105, resulting in her number age increasing to 11 years and 2 months (7 months above her actual age). This was a total increase in number age of 5 years 10 months, since first testing. Child B gained so much confidence and understanding that she is now one of the first to put her hand up to demonstrate an answer and still grows in confidence. A true achievement of the working and results of Catch Up® Numeracy.

Our Motto is Caring, Learning and Achieving Together, which encapsulates our aims.
It our duty to do our very best to provide the foundations for a successful future for all of our children.
Our education needs to nurture and inspire every child, taking care of their individual needs, so that their imagination is free to flourish.
Schools provide a window to the world – it is our duty to work together to pass on the wisdom of our community, and equip each child with the knowledge, skills and, above all, attitudes which will equip them to become active and responsible members of society.