Category Archives: School Holidays

The pupil premium summer schools programme 2015

The Department for Education have produced the latest information on summer schools for secondary schools which you may find useful.

Summer schools provide an excellent opportunity for secondary schools to help disadvantaged new pupils understand what and how they will be studying in key stage 3. It is also an opportunity for schools to help disadvantaged pupils who are behind in key areas such as literacy and numeracy to catch up with their peers.

Application and funding

Secondary schools can now apply for funding by completing a short online form by 29 May 2015.

Schools will receive an email within 24 hours of submitting their application form. The email will confirm the school’s provisional funding allocation based on the provisional pupil numbers provided by the school. If a school does not receive this email they should complete the DfE ‘Contact us’ form.

Schools will receive £250 (if running a one-week summer school) or £500 (if running a two-week summer school) for every eligible pupil who confirms they want to attend the summer school. If a school plans to organise a summer school for less than a full week or for less than two full weeks they should complete the DfE ‘Contact us’ form before submitting their registration form.

Schools can invite eligible pupils joining their year 7 in September as well as eligible pupils from other year groups in the school but their number of funded places will be limited to the number of eligible pupils expected to move into their year 7 in September.

Funding will be paid to schools in two instalments:

  • The first payment will be made at the end of June 2015 (academies and free schools will be paid in the first week of July) and will be 50 per cent of the provisional funding allocation.
  • The final payment will be made at the end of October 2015 (academies and free schools will be paid in the first week of November). A school’s final funding allocation will be based on the information provided by the school in the September final claim form and this could be lower that the provisional estimate. Overpayments will be recovered.

If a school cancels the summer school or fails to complete the final claim form the Department will recover any funding already paid.

Independent special schools will need to invoice the Department once they have confirmed details of their final summer school offer in September and will therefore be paid in one instalment.

Schools can work with other organisations and institutions to run their summer school, including those in the private/voluntary sector.

Pupils eligible for summer school funding

Schools will be funded for pupils who are eligible for the pupil premium – that is pupils who:

  • Are registered as eligible for FSM or who have been registered at any point in the last 6 years (known as ‘Ever6’); or
  • Have been looked after by the local authority for a day or more; or
  • Were previously looked after and left care through being adopted, or under a Special Guardianship Order, Child Arrangements Order or Residence Order; and
  • Who have been recorded on the January Schools Census as being in one of these categories.

Schools can use the web-based tool – Key to Success – to identify which pupils moving to their school are eligible for the pupil premium. This includes pupils eligible because of their FSM history and those eligible due to being looked after by the Local Authority or have been adopted from care. Guidance on how to use the system is available on the same website.

Schools can offer places to pupils who are not eligible for the pupil premium but these pupils will not be funded by the Summer Schools Programme.

A report on the impact of summer schools includes information schools may find useful when planning their summer school.

* the full document is available on the Department for Education website


this Christmas

Help Harry Help Others (HHHO) was started by a very brave boy called Harry Moseley, who, whilst suffering from an inoperable brain tumour started fundraising and raising awareness of Brain Cancer. In just over two years Harry had organised and also won numerous awards including Britain’s Kindest Kid 2009 – 2010 and Children’s Champions award via News of the World, to name just two. Harry’s full story and list of achievements can be found on his website

As part of our ongoing partnership with HHHO, this Christmas Aspire Sports have pledged to Help Harry Help Others supporting families with children in local hospices like Acorns.

For many families who have children in hospices, Christmas can be an especially difficult time of year, and with HHHO’s support, we wanted to make a difference by organising a Christmas present appeal.

On MONDAY 22nd DECEMBER we will be receiving donations at all five of our Active Camp venues. If you can please support us by bringing along any new, unopened and wrapped gifts. We need a variety of gifts suitable for children and teenagers up to the age of 16. The presents will then be distributed to local hospices in time for Christmas by HHHO and Aspire Sports staff.

If you would like to donate a gift please bring it to the camp, if possible please label the gift  so we know if it is for a boy or girl and the approximate age for the gift (if you don’t have any spare tags, don’t worry we will have some tags at the venues).

Active Camp Present Collection Points

Bishop Vesey’s School, Sutton Coldfield
Landau Forte Academy, Tamworth
Tudor Grange Academy, Solihull
Hagley High School, Hagley
North Leamington School, Leamington Spa

Thank you in advance for your help and support, we wish you and your family a very Happy Christmas.

 Help Harry Help Others and Aspire Sports


Easter Holiday Fun For Grove Pupils

Pupils in Handsworth had hours of fun over the Easter break whilst boosting their maths skills and confidence.

Over 20 pupils from Grove Primary School took part in a holiday programme that included Level One and Two Bikeability as well as the Maths Through Sport programme.

Marc Russell who manages the Maths Through Sport programme was delighted with the children’s progress and said “The children worked extremely hard over the two weeks and gained lots more confidence in maths which will help them during their SATS.”

Marc continued “It was also great to give them an opportunity to become competent cyclists and gain a recognised Bikeability qualification. The school are big advocates of physical activity and this week has reinforced that.” 

Click here to view images from the two week programme.

Aspire Sports run bespoke school holiday programmes throughout the year to help schools achieve their goals. If your school is interested in running a school holiday scheme then please contact us.

National News Appearance

Aspire Sports welcomed ITV national news team to their Active Camps programme this summer.

Children attending the popular Sutton Coldfield venue were quzized about their physical activity habits.

The story was reacting to a recent study that showed half of all UK seven-year-old’s do not do enough exercise.

University College London researchers found just 51% of the 6,500 children they monitored achieved the recommended hour of physical activity each day. Worryingly, girls were just 38%, compared with 63% for boys. And half of the group spent more than six hours being sedentary each day.

Aspire Sports appear on ITV National News

Aspire Sports on ITV National News

A story on the BBC website investigates the story in more detail:

Report author Professor Carol Dezateux: “You need to get moving early… to stay active”

Prof Carol Dezateux, one of the lead authors, said: “There is a big yawning gap between girls and boys. We need to really think about how we are reaching out to girls.

“The school playground is an important starting point. Often you will find it dominated by boys playing football.”

But she said there should still be concern about the activity levels across the board.

“The findings are particularly worrying because seven-year-olds are likely to become less active as they get older, not more.”

To achieve the one hour recommendation children have to take part in moderate or vigorous activity, which includes everything from brisk walking and cycling to playing football and running.

The UCL research is not the first to suggest children are not active enough, but most previous studies have relied on self-reporting by children or parents estimating levels of exercise, whereas the latest one involved real-time monitoring.

During the study, which took place during 2008 and 2009, youngsters wore an accelerometer to measure exercise levels which was attached to an elastic belt around their waist. It was removed only when bathing or when the children went to bed.

In total, the experts were able to record more than 36,000 days of data based on the children wearing the accelerometer for at least 10 hours a day over the course of a week.

Dr John Middleton, of the Faculty of Public Health, said more research was needed into why certain groups were less active.

“We need our children to grow up to be fit and healthy adults, not just because it’s what any civilised society would want for its children, but it’s also best for our economy too,” he added.

Dr Ann Hoskins, of Public Health England, agreed.

She said: “This study highlights that there is still much to do to keep children and young people active as they grow older, especially girls.

“The new school year is the perfect time to make healthy changes, swapping short car or bus journeys with walking or scooting to school.”

Activity Beats Coming Soon

With nine programmes currently running at six of our venues every school holiday, the question is could there be anymore?  Well the answer is yes!

Aspire Active Camps are delighted to announce the arrival of the new and exciting C-Sharp Music Academy.

Using a wide variety of fun games and combining physical activity and music, the C-Sharp Music Academy programme is something new, innovative and never seen before.

A typical day involves drumming workshops, fun music themed games, learning to conduct a band and much more.

If children have their own instrument then great, if not, parents need not worry, as the C-Sharp Music Academy inspires children to learn a variety of instruments through interactive programmes teaching rhythm techniques and basic music principles.

The C-Sharp Music Academy will be making its first appearance at Hagley Active Camps this Whitsun half term. Click here to book now.

If you would like more information about the C-Sharp Music Academy or any of other Active Camp programmes click here.