What is Pupil premium?
Pupil premium is government 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 much pupil premium funding schools and local authorities will receive for each eligible child in 2022 to 2023.
|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||£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|
- 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
Service Pupil Premium
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 £310 in 2021 to 2022 and £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 to help with pastoral support.
Use of Pupil Premium
School leaders are best placed to assess their pupils' needs and use the funding to improve attainment, drawing on evidence of effective practice. It is up to school leaders to decide how to spend the pupil premium.
Evidence suggests that pupil premium spending is most effective when schools use a tiered approach, targeting spending across 3 areas, with a particular focus on teaching.
Investing in high-quality teaching, for example:
- training and professional development for teachers
- recruitment and retention
- support for teachers early in their careers
2. Targeted academic support
Additional support for some pupils focussed on their specific needs, for example:
- one-to-one tuition
- small group tuition
- speech and language therapy
3. Wider approaches
Support for non-academic issues that impact success in school, such as attendance, behaviour and social and emotional challenges. For example:
- school breakfast clubs
- counselling to support emotional health and wellbeing
- help with the cost of educational trips or visits
Read the Education Endowment Foundation's (EEF) pupil premium guide for information about the tiered approach to spending.
Use of funds for non eligible pupils
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.