From education to employment

Rethinking Pupil Premium: Teachers believe catch-up funding should be weighted towards schools serving poorer areas

Children with their teacher drawind during an art class

Commenting on the report by Teach First – Rethinking Pupil Premium, showing that teachers believe catch-up funding should be weighted towards schools serving poorer areas,

Paul Whiteman, general secretary of school leaders’ union NAHT, said:

“It’s only right that those children and young people who need the most support receive it. This report shines a spotlight on how the value of pupil premium funding for disadvantaged pupils has been eroded over a number years. Recent minor uplifts have not gone far enough in undoing those real-terms cuts. We fully support the calls for the value of pupil premium funding to be restored.

“We also fully support the recommendation that the early years pupil premium should be increased. It is widely agreed that early intervention is essential when it comes to having a positive long-term impact on pupil outcomes, it therefore makes no sense for the early years pupil premium to be only a fraction of the primary funding.”

Dr Mary Bousted, Joint General Secretary of the National Education Union, said:

“The Government has cut school funding since 2015 and the cuts have fallen hardest on the most disadvantaged pupils. One way they have done that is by reducing the value of the Pupil Premium by 15% in real terms. So, restoring its value is a necessary step if the Government is going to live up to its promise to eradicate school cuts. 

‘Research shows that the longer a child lives in poverty, the greater the damage to their education – providing schools with additional resources to help children overcome this would be an important measure to help level up. The Government needs to listen to teachers when they tell them that they do not have the resources they need to help children. 

‘The pandemic has done terrible damage to education, but even before COVID, the Government’s cuts have set back the life chances of the next generation. Class sizes are at record levels – primary classes are the largest this century; secondary classes are the largest since records began in 1978 and almost a million children are being taught in classes with more than 30 children. There needs to be much more done by Government to ensure every child has the education they deserve.” 

Related Articles