Can anyone tell me whether schools received any increase in budget to implement the new(ish) computing curriculum?
Also, regarding pupil premium, is it very clearly laid down exactly how this can be spent i.e does it have to be targetted at specific pupils?
The reason I ask is that our PTA members were e-mailed by the Head of our primary yesterday(teacher training day) requesting £500 to buy programmable robots for use by KS1. Aside from the fact that he wants an answer by tomorrow(!), I'm wondering if it is reasonable to expect the school to meet some of the cost?
School budgets are being cut, there was no new money to implement ANY of the new curriculum, so artefacts, books, equipment etc need to be purchased and there is little money in the budget to do so. Programmable equipment and programming is a HUGE part of the new curriculum and many schools are having to try to buy new resources to teach the requirements, so I can quite understand a Head hoping the PTFA would assist. If the school paid part of it, the money would have to come from expenditure elsewhere, there isn't any "spare money" lying around schools.
Pupil premium money has to be targetted at specific pupils but others can benefit too. For example, we employ an extra teacher to support PP children but she also has other children in the same group working at the same level who benefit from the same input. Some money also goes to pay for school trips, music lessons and in one case a taxi to school whilst mum was ill!
We certainly can't run school trips without significant donations from parents, contributions are voluntary but, in my school around 80% or parents pay, 15% are subsidised by pupil premium funds and the school itself pays the remainder for those parents who can't/won't contribute. Any more than this and the trip is unviable and won't run. PTFA pay for coaches for our whole school trip but, as we are a small school we only need two coaches-this is still around £1000