What we do

Improving education outcomes for our children

The background for the work of Hastings Thrives

In 2016 Hastings was the 13th most deprived town in England characterised by

  • A high proportion of children living in poverty with a higher proportion of children receiving free school meals than the national and South East average
  • Workforce skills shortages and lower than average pay
  • A higher than average rate of children with special educational needs
  • A low level of young adults achieving 5 or more good GCSE passes.

How do we plan to address this?

We are taking a cross town and community approach. We made the decision that we want the academic and life successes of our children to be high on the priority list of Hastings as a wider community and to address the needs and development of particularly the most vulnerable of our children

Hastings Thrives aims to achieve this by working with children and their families as well as the wider community. Our main strategy is through the Thrive programme https://www.thriveapproach.com aimed at the most vulnerable children at the very beginning of their learning career. We started by focusing on those children in reception and KS1 although we also trained practitioners in all stages of school including secondary. 48 staff from primary schools and 12 staff from secondary schools have become accredited as licensed practitioners

So far, we have had considerable success in improving outcomes for children in the early stages of their education. The work started in September 2015 when the children of Hastings were not performing well against National and East Sussex averages.

  • In Early Years those reaching ‘Good level of development’ in 2016 was up 3.4% and above National Average of 69.4 % and in line with other East Sussex outcomes.
  • Outcomes in Phonics testing in year 2 2016 was up 2.5 % but still below National and East Sussex averages. (81%) but the gap now between those in receipt of free school meals and their peers is reducing
  • KS1 reading working at expected level 2016 was 4% In line with National (74.1%) and slightly below East Sussex (75.6%).
  • KS1 writing working at expected level 2016 was 68% above the National Average of 66%.
  • KS1 maths working at expected level 2016 was 74% slightly above the national average 73%

We have been very encouraged by these early signs of success. These children now have a good basis for continuing to be successful in their education.

We are raising the profile of our work through advertising our aims, aspirations and successes throughout the town with the Song contest, parade, school newsletters and with children talking to members of school communities.

Plans for the coming year include extending Thrive practice as well as working closely with the local teaching school to access Opportunity Area Teaching and Learning Development funding to continue and extend our work.  https://www.gov.uk/guidance/teaching-and-leadership-innovation-fund