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Two little boys friends hug each other in summer sunny day. Brother love. Concept friendship. Back view.

You may have read about the pupil premium, which is delivering additional funding for publicly funded schools in England to help raise the attainment of disadvantaged pupils. The attainment gap is evident throughout all stages of education between children from disadvantaged backgrounds and their more affluent peers. The difference becomes more evident between pupils in secondary education and higher education. This funding is therefore to be spent to close the gap between a disadvantaged child and their peers.


The pupil premium is paid to schools, not to the child directly, and is to be used to provide additional provision for their disadvantaged pupils. The school will assess and decide what the allocated funding is spent on. Then the Ofsted inspectors will report on how the funding is used by the school, and the effects it has on the attainment of their disadvantaged pupils.


All mainstream schools and academies are required to have a designated teacher (SENCO) who is a source of expertise about the barriers to teaching and learning, which prevent looked-after children achieving their potential. The designated teacher also plays an important role as the main link with the local authority that looks after the child. They have a duty under the Children Act 1989 to promote his or her educational achievement.


Recommendations and expectations:

  • Pupil premium should be used for its purpose and not absorbed into the mainstream budget
  • Pupil premium should benefit the designated children and it needs to be clearly identified
  • Pupil premium spending should be evaluated as fit for purpose
  • Pupil premium should avoid being spent on activities with little impact on the child’s achievements


As well as children who are looked-after, children who qualify for free school meals are also entitled to pupil premium. However, a child receiving pupil premium does not automatically qualify to receive free school meals. Looked-after children, for example, are not entitled to free school meals if their Foster Carer receives an allowance to cover the cost of all meals.


Foster Carers who think they could qualify for free school meals should talk to the school; however, they do not need to do anything in order to claim pupil premium for their fostered child as this will happen automatically. If you’d like to read more, you can click the link below:


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