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The Virtual School

5. Pupil Premium Plus

What is the Pupil Premium Plus?

Pupil Premium Plus is a government grant to support and promote the education of children and young people in care.


The Pupil Premium Plus is allocated to The Virtual School for each looked after child (LAC) of school age with a nominal value of £1,900 to support their education.  However, some children may need more, some less, depending on an assessment of their individual needs.

Children and young people will be eligible as soon as they enter care; Pupil Premium Plus must be used to improve outcomes and raise attainment of the looked after child.

The Virtual School Headteacher is responsible for making sure there are effective arrangements in place for allocating Pupil Premium Plus funding  to benefit children looked after by Buckinghamshire County Council, wherever they are placed.

How the grant is to be used must be clearly identified in each young person’s Personal Education Plan (PEP) in consultation with the designated teacher and the social worker, plus contributions from the carer and other relevant professionals considering the views of the carer and the child.

Children adopted from care and the Pupil Premium Plus

From April 2015 all children in provision funded by the local authority who were adopted from local authority care or who have left care under a special guardianship or care arrangements order (formally known as a   residence order), will attract the Pupil Premium Plus.  Funding will be paid directly to schools for those children between Reception and Year 11.

To establish eligibility, schools should invite parents to self-declare that their child was adopted from care of left care under a guardianship or care arrangements order. Parents should be asked to provide evidence for example, a copy of the adoption order.

Adoption UK; further information about the Pupil premium (opens in a new window)

DfE guidance for schools on the pupil premium (opens in a new window)

Why may the amount of Pupil Premium Plus vary?

The needs of children and young people in care can vary at different times.  For some £1,900 may only be a fraction of the cost for the support they need.  Those who may require more could include:-

  • Children who come into care in an emergency with a fragmented home and education history and who are behind academically.
  • Children who have to move into or out of Buckinghamshire in an emergency.
  • Children where there is a significant and often delayed reaction to abuse and neglect, which manifests in hard to anticipate behaviours.

In response to this wide range of need, there may well be a significant  difference in the amount of Pupil Premium Plus distributed to individual children.

Pupil Premium Plus and Personal Education Plans

The Pupil Premium Plus will only be provided to meet the needs identified in a high quality plan in the PEP with clear educational and other measurable targets for improvement.

The Pupil Premium Plus will be used to improve outcomes for looked after children in the following areas:-

  • Raising levels of achievement and progress
  • Supporting achievement in an area where a child is gifted and talented
  • Improving attendance
  • Supporting emotional wellbeing
  • Promoting inclusion (by reducing internal and external exclusion)
  • Developing social skills
  • Supporting a smooth transition into the next key stage or new place of learning

The PEP action plan will show the baseline data, target for improvement, expected outcomes and cost of support.

National research shows that one to one tuition has a disproportionately positive impact for children in care. Providing this will be a priority in the first instance.

Early Years Pupil Premium (EYPP)

Settings that are eligible for the Early Years  Pupil Premium (EYPP)  funding will have three and four year old ‘looked after children’ attending. The amount of funding will be £300, which will be allocated to each child according to need.

When will Pupil Premium Plus not be allocated?

Pupil Premium Plus will not be used to double fund or replace funding which should already have been allocated to the school to support a child for example:

  • To fund services that should be provided via an Education, Health and Care Plan
  • A Statutory Assessment or support from health services
  • The interventions put in place do not require any funding.
  • The school’s own funding covers the cost of the interventions.
  • The PEP action plan does not meet standard requirements.

Where previously schools may have used the LAC Pupil Premium to fund interventions for other learners, for example, interventions which did not link to the needs of an individual LAC child.  Such use will no longer be possible.

Further Information

If you require further information on Pupil Premium Plus, or the education of looked after children, please contact The Virtual School:         

Tel:-01296 383163     or by Email:- thevirtualschool@buckscc.gov.uk

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Last updated: 11 May 2018

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