Virtual School funding

Virtual School funding

Summary of available sources of funding.

Early years pupil premium

Worcestershire Children First is in charge of giving the EYPP to the early years providers that educate looked after children (children in the care of Worcestershire Children First) who are taking up the Universal Nursery Education Funding (NEF) entitlement for three to four year olds. Early years providers or any other organisation that receives NEF from the local authority for children aged under five, including nurseries and childminders. Please note that that Pupil Premium Plus is not available to Early Years settings.

Worcestershire Children First: Early Years Pupil Premium via the Provider Portal.

Early years national funding formula: funding rates and guidance from GOV.UK

Pupil premium grant

Pupil Premium Plus (5 to 16 years) is managed by the Virtual School Headteacher to improve the attainment and progress of children looked after. Schools will receive Pupil Premium Grant Funding on the result of a good quality Personal Education Plan (PEP) and will receive up to £550 per term. Funding will not be allocated to Schools if a PEP is not completed. The Pupil Premium Grant should not be used to fund central services or private schools, as this is provided through the care contract.

The Virtual School Headteacher and Virtual School Learning Advocates work with education settings, ensuring interventions are tailored to the characteristics and experiences of the individual. The grant should be spent on improving educational outcomes and ensuring the young person makes at least good or better progress than their peers. Funding should be put in place to improve education experiences of the child.

Pupil Premium (5 to 16 years) for Special Guardianship Order (SGO), Residential Orders and Adopted Children is funded directly to Schools. The School receive £2,410 per annum. The grant should be spent on improving educational outcomes and ensuring the young person makes at least good or better progress than their peers.

The Pupil Premium Grant for 2019 to 2020 will include pupils recorded in the January 2020 school census and alternative provision census who were looked after by an English or Welsh local authority immediately before being adopted, or who left local authority care on a special guardianship order or child arrangements order (previously known as a residence order). Please inform schools of the child's status to ensure they are recorded on the school census and receive funding as a result. These are collectively referred to as post-LAC in the conditions of grant.

The Virtual School Headteacher must be able to demonstrate how the pupil premium and Early Years Pupil Premium funding is raising the achievement of our Children Looked After to other governing bodies, the executive board of Worcestershire Children First and Worcestershire Corporate Parenting Board.

Pupil premium plus (PP+)

Whilst some of our Children who are Looked After (CLA) achieve well, the educational outcomes for CLA children and young people generally remain low compared to their peers. Many children entering care or starting school do so with low entry levels, a history of trauma and with special educational needs.  An even greater number of CLA are underachieving and are not making the expected or accelerated levels of progress.  It is intended that the Pupil Premium Plus (PP+) funding outlined in this policy will address this issue by providing the resources for targeted support and intervention.

This policy is informed by the two key Department of Education (DfE) documents that influence the policy and practice arrangements for the Pupil Premium Plus for CLA for 2022 - 2023. 

  • Promoting the Education of looked-after Children and Previously looked-After Children (DfE 2018). 
  • Pupil Premium Plus Conditions of Grant 2022-23 (DfE 2022)

The government has set out, in its statutory guidance, that the Virtual School Head (VSH) is responsible for managing the Pupil Premium Plus budget.  This Policy and associated practice will be reviewed annually and approved by the Virtual School Governing Body to reflect any change in DfE policy or funding arrangements.

What is Pupil Premium for Children Looked After?

Raising the attainment of CLA is a key priority and it is a responsibility shared by the Local Authority, schools, and their partners in the community.  The Pupil Premium Plus (PP+) is a vital resource, and used effectively, it will diminish the difference in outcomes between disadvantaged children and their peers.  Pupil Premium for CLA provides additional funding for schools to support and help raise the educational attainment and progress of their CLA pupils.  The Virtual School devolves this funding to schools.  It works, through the Personal Education Plan process, with designated teachers, social workers, and carers to target and utilise this funding effectively to improve educational outcomes.

The PP+ funding can be used to facilitate a wide range of educational support for CLA.  It is important that interventions supported by PP+ should be evidence-based and in the best interests of the child. 

For information please download the Worcestershire Virtual School Pupil Premium Policy for Children Looked After and Previously Looked After Children (PDF).

National Tutoring Programme and Recovery Premium

The National Tutoring Programme (NTP) provides funding to spend on targeted academic support, delivered by trained and experienced tutors and mentors for children in Year 1 until Year 11. The Virtual School receives funding for our CLA and this is allocated to support identified within the PEP process.

Additionally, The Virtual School receives funding through the Recovery Premium to support pupils whose education has been impacted by COVID-19 in Reception until Year 11. This funding is used to support high-quality teaching, provide targeted academic support, and for tackling non-academic barriers to academic success, such as difficulties with attendance, behaviour and social and emotional wellbeing. It is used to provide additional professional advice and resources to schools, through the Virtual School training and support and through the PEP process. 

Further information regarding these funding resources is available through your Learning Advocates. The academic year 2023/24 is the final year the DfE will offer these funding sources.

Two year old funding

If the child has been adopted from care they will be entitled to two year old funding, however they must first apply. It has been made very clear to nurseries that they should not offer anyone a free place until they have been provided with a ‘Certificate’ confirming that they are entitled to it.

Free childcare for 2 year olds

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