Applies to England
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This publication is available at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/pupil-premium/pupil-premium
This guidance is an overview of pupil premium for school staff, parents and anyone else interested in the pupil premium.
There’s separate guidance for school leaders about using pupil premium.
Pupil premium is funding to improve education outcomes for disadvantaged pupils in schools in England. Evidence shows that disadvantaged children generally face additional challenges in reaching their potential at school and often do not perform as well as other pupils.
Pupil eligibility and funding rates 2022 to 2023
This table shows how pupil premium funding is allocated to schools and local authorities. Allocations are provided on a financial year basis, based on the following pupil eligibility rates.
|Pupil eligibility criteria||Amount of funding for each primary-aged pupil per year||Amount of funding for each secondary-aged pupil per year||Funding is paid to|
|Pupils who are eligible for free school meals, or have been eligible in the past 6 years (including eligible children of families with no recourse to public funds)||£1385||£985||School|
|Pupils who have been adopted from care or have left care||£2410||£2410||School|
|Children who are looked after by the local authority||£2410||£2410||Local authority|
We have permanently extended free school meal eligibility to include children in all households with no recourse to public funds (NRPF). The guidance on Providing free school meals to families with NRPF includes:
- a new claims form for schools to complete
- eligibility criteria
- income thresholds
- details on claiming additional pupil premium
The following types of schools are eligible to receive an allocation of pupil premium.
Local authority-maintained schools
- mainstream infant, primary, middle, junior, secondary and all-through schools serving children aged 5 to 16
- schools for children with special educational needs or disabilities
- pupil referral units (PRUs), for children who do not go to a mainstream school
Academies, free schools and non-maintained special schools
- mainstream academies serving pupils aged 5 to 16
- academies and non-maintained special schools for children with special educational needs or disabilities
- alternative provision (AP) academies, for children who do not go to a mainstream school
Pupil premium funding is also provided to local authorities for eligible pupils in independent special schools, where the local authority pays full tuition fees.
Service pupil premium (SPP)
Service pupil premium is additional funding for schools, but it is not based on disadvantage. It has been combined into pupil premium payments to make it easier for schools to manage their spending.
Schools get £320 in 2022 to 2023 for every pupil with a parent who:
- is serving in HM Forces
- has retired on a pension from the Ministry of Defence
This funding is primarily to help with pastoral support. It can also be used to help improve the academic progress of eligible pupils if schools deem this to be a priority.
Use of the pupil premium
Funding paid to schools
School leaders are best placed to assess their pupils’ needs and use the funding to improve attainment, drawing on evidence of effective practice. Pupil premium is not a personal budget for individual pupils and schools are not required to spend all of the allocated grant on eligible pupils.
It is for school leaders to decide how to spend the pupil premium, within the requirements of the conditions of grant.
Evidence suggests that pupil premium spending is most effective when used across 3 areas.
- High-quality teaching, such as staff professional development.
- Targeted academic support, such as tutoring.
- Wider strategies to address non-academic barriers to success in schools, such as attendance, behaviour and social and emotional support.
The Education Endowment Foundation (EEF) recommend that schools particularly focus their pupil premium on supporting high-quality teaching.
Funding paid to local authorities for looked-after children
Virtual School Heads are responsible for managing the funding given to local authorities for the children in their care. They work with schools to ensure the funding is used to help deliver the outcomes identified in the children’s personal education plans.
They can pass all of the funding on to schools or retain some to fund activities that will benefit a group, or all, of the authority’s looked-after children.
Further information is available on Virtual School Heads responsibilities for using pupil premium.
Schools do not have to spend pupil premium so it solely benefits eligible pupils. They can use it wherever they identify the greatest need. For example, they might spend it on pupils who do not get free school meals but:
- have or have had a social worker
- act as a carer
Using pupil premium funding to improve teaching quality is the most effective way to improve outcomes for disadvantaged pupils. By doing so, schools will inevitably benefit non-eligible pupils as well.
Academically able pupils
Pupil premium funding is not allocated based on academic ability. Schools and local authorities will receive funding based on all of the children who are eligible.
Evidence shows that academically able pupils from disadvantaged backgrounds are most at risk of under-performing. These pupils should receive just as much focus as less academically able pupils.
Schools must show how they’re using their pupil premium funding:
- by publishing a statement on their website about how they use their funding and the impact it has on the attainment of disadvantaged pupils
- through inspections by Ofsted
- through published performance tables
Virtual School Heads demonstrate to Ofsted how they’re managing pupil premium for looked-after children in the Virtual School Annual Report.
For more information, read the:
- guidance for school leaders on using pupil premium
- Education Endowment Foundation’s guide to using pupil premium
- the allocations and conditions of grant that shows:
- the funding given to each school
- the totals at national, local authority and parliamentary constituency level
- how pupil premium funding must be spent
- the payment timetable