Best Practice

Getting transition right for vulnerable pupils

We all know that transition to year 7 can lead to a dip in student outcomes. Daniel Sobel speaks to Jez Piper about how we can get transition right, particularly for our most vulnerable pupils

I do not need to persuade anyone nowadays that primary to secondary transitions are important. We have known this for decades.

However, getting any local authority or academy trust to throw money at this is a different matter entirely. Such initiatives are few and far between.

Yet, it is all the rage to run programmes aimed at reducing exclusions. But I would argue that one of the significant contributing factors to challenging behaviours, mental health and even the attainment gap is transition.

Twenty years ago research found that “some groups of pupils are more at risk than others of losing ground at these critical moments in their school careers; in the process the seeds of social exclusion may be planted” (Galton et al, 1999).

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