Pupil Premium is additional funding given to publicly funded schools in England to raise the attainment of disadvantaged pupils and close the gap between them and their peers.
Pupil Premium funding is available to both mainstream and non-mainstream schools, such as special schools and pupil referral units.
It is allocated to schools based on the number of children who come from low-income families, this is defined as those who are currently known to be eligible for free school meals. (FSM)
It is important to know that a pupil does not need to have a school dinner, but the parents / carers should check to see if they are entitled.
In the financial year schools receive:
- Pupil Premium – £935.00 (increased to £955.00 – April 2020) for every secondary age pupil, who claims free school meals, or who has claimed free school meals in the last 6 years.
- Pupil Premium Plus – In the financial year schools receive £2,300.00 (increased to £2,345.00 – April 2020) for every pupil who has been looked after for 1 day or more / Adopted from care on or after 30 December 2005 / Left care under a special guardianship order or a residence order.
The funding for a looked-after pupil will be held by the Virtual School Team (VST) in the local authority who will determine the allocation to the school. Local authorities get the same amount for each child they are looking after; they must work with the school to decide how the money is used to support the child’s Personal Education Plan (PEP). Targets are assigned within the PEP and costed.
It is for the school to decide how the Pupil Premium, allocated to schools per FSM pupil, is spent, to make the most impact with disadvantaged young people. It is also for the school to decide, who it considers as disadvantaged.
Key principles for using the funding:
- The funding is to be ring-fenced at the beginning of the academic year so that it can be shown to benefit targeted disadvantaged students.
- Eligibility for the use of the premium is not confused with low ability, instead, it encourages disadvantaged learners to raise their attainment as high as possible.
- The school tries to determine which pupils are underachieving and why, especially in core subjects
- The school draws on evidence from its own and others’ experience to allocate the funding to the activities that are most likely to have an impact on raising achievement. In some cases, this may be a focus on raising self esteem.
- Teaching groups are kept to a teacher: pupil ratio of 1:4 but in addition, support staff are deployed to help learners to raise attainment and learn more acceptable ways to behave.
- The Headteacher, working with the Designated teacher for Children Looked After (LAC) have an overview of how the funding is allocated and are able to report on outcomes for pupils.
- Class and subject teachers have access to information which show which pupils are eligible for pupil premium, so that they can pay particular attention to accelerating their progress.
How can I apply for Free School meals / Pupil Premium funding?
You will usually qualify if you are in receipt of any of the following:
- Income Support
- Income-Based Job Seekers Allowance
- Guarantee element of State Pension Credit
- Child Tax Credit with no Working Tax Credit and have an income, as assessed by the Inland · Revenue, that does not exceed £16,190
- Support under Part VI of the Immigration & Asylum Act 1999
- Employment Support Allowance (Income Related) (ESA-IR)
You can check if you are eligible for Pupil Premium funding and also apply for this via Stockport Council’s website HERE