Blog: Pupil Premium could help schools focus on father-involvement

14 December 2010

Jeremy Davies writes: Emerging details about the Pupil Premium suggest schools could focus on increasing father-involvement as a key response to this major Coalition policy initiative.

Total funding available for the Pupil Premium will be £625m in 2011-12, rising each year until 2014-15 when it will be worth £2.5bn. It will target extra money at pupils from deprived backgrounds – pupils we know under achieve compared to their non-deprived peers – in order to support them in reaching their potential. In 2011-12, the Pupil Premium will be allocated to those pupils eligible for free school meals.

The level of the Pupil Premium will be £430 per pupil and will be the same for every deprived pupil, no matter where they live. The Coalition’s objective is to reform the underlying funding system to ensure that over time deprived children in every part of the country receive the same level of support. They will consult on how best to meet this objective. The funding for the Pupil Premium is in addition to the underlying schools budget, which will be at the same cash per pupil level for 2011-12 as this year.

Crucially, this additional funding will be passed straight to schools and is not ring-fenced, so schools will have freedom to employ the strategies that they know will support their pupils to increase their attainment. Read our research summary on how fathers’ involvement impacts on children’s education.

Looked after children also face additional barriers to reaching their potential and so these pupils too will receive a premium of £430. The premium for looked after children will rise in subsequent years, in line with the premium for deprived pupils. There will be a premium for the children of armed services personnel, who face unique challenges and stresses. The premium will provide extra funding to schools with service children to support the schools in meeting these needs.

The Fatherhood Institute offers a range of training options for schools under the name The Dad Factor.

Read more about the Pupil Premium.

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