Eltham Hill school in south east London used NPC’s Well-being Measure to assess how well young people entering the school were integrating, and whether it could better support the transition from primary to secondary.
Eltham Hill School
Eltham Hill is a mixed-ability girls community school in south east London, close to the site where Stephen Lawrence died in 1993. The school has a large catchment area and draws students from a wide variety of backgrounds. Eltham Hill wanted to learn more about young people entering the school, and whether some groups started with different levels of well-being.
During the first few weeks, it uses a variety of strategies to help new pupils integrate into the school—such as teachers escorting pupils to their classrooms and a ‘buddying’ scheme. It wanted to track new pupils to see whether more could be done to support this transition.
The school surveyed 170 year seven pupils at the start and end of the autumn term. So that it could subdivide the group in the analysis, it included tag questions on ethnicity and whether pupils were eligible for free school meals.
Overall, at the start of the autumn term, pupils scored highly on satisfaction with school but had a lower scores for friendships. In general, pupils eligible for free school meals had lower scores than the rest of the year group, particularly in terms of satisfaction with their community, but also in self-esteem and emotional well-being. Among subgroups, working class white girls (that is, white girls eligible for free school meals) scored lowest on all areas of well-being—suggesting that Eltham Hill could focus more effort on integrating them into the school.
At follow-up at the end of the Autumn term, there was a reduction in satisfaction with school, although scores remained high – this was explained as a result of an ‘easing off’ of the school’s transition strategies.
Madeleine Griffin, head teacher of Eltham Hill, said ‘There is nothing like direct feedback from students. For me it is a great tool…I would highly recommend it to other heads’.