Tag Archives: pupil premium

Opinion: can the Pupil Premium only ever score 23%?

This may come as a shock if you’re a dedicated school governor. You see, I have a confession. I was in a governors’ conference last year and my attention wandered. During the keynote speech, no less. In fact, it didn’t just wander; I found the speaker so baffling that I resorted to doing maths.

I’ve been fascinated – obsessed even – with how you help children from disadvantaged, sometimes chaotic, homes make the progress they should at primary school (I’m Chair of Governors at a Hackney primary school with a culturally rich, but, on the whole, economically challenged intake). Now, obviously, …

Posted in Op-eds | 13 Comments

LibLink: David Laws and Julian Astle – Coalition must not waste the pupil premium

Over at the Financial Times today, former Lib Dem cabinet minister David Laws and CentreForum’s director Julian Astle write about the potential of the ‘pupil premium’ to transform the life chances of pupils from the most disadvantaged backgrounds — but argue that schools must be held accountable for using the money directly for this purpose. Here’s an excerpt:

The pupil premium, which for the first time will see a universal service underpinned by an explicitly pro-poor funding system, sits front-and-centre in this agenda.

At present there is additional school funding for young people from deprived backgrounds, but it is allocated in

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Clegg secures £7 billion extra to fund education for the most disadvantaged – from pre-school through to university

Just as plays have a classic three-act structure, so too do tricky political decisions: first you rule out a potentially popular alternative, then you put out the bad news and finally you sweeten the pill as you try to avert people’s worst fears.

Last weekend saw act one on the tuition fees message, with Vince Cable taking to email to rule out a graduate tax – and trying to pre-empt Labour support for it by emphasising that party’s own previous opposition to the idea. (Given the subsequent news of now Shadow Chancellor Alan Johnson’s continued opposition to a

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Teather: Pupil Premium is a real Liberal Democrat achievement

I came into politics to make a difference for the most disadvantaged in our society. It is over three years since I, as Liberal Democrat education spokesperson, championed the Pupil Premium as our flagship education policy and debated it at Conference. I never dared imagine a time when I would be unveiling it as Government policy and then actually implementing it. But this week, the Coalition Government announced that a Pupil Premium, funded from outside the schools budget, will be introduced next September. It will mean that from next year, schools taking disadvantaged children will get the additional money they need to provide them with the extra support they deserve, no matter where they are in the country. This could mean more individual tuition or catch-up classes, but it will be for the school to decide, we won’t be telling headteachers how to spend the money.

This is a real Liberal Democrat achievement. It was the centrepiece of our education policy during the election campaign, and it is now being implemented in Government. While the Conservatives had a similar policy, it was the Liberal Democrats who pushed for it to be funded from outside the schools budget, and for it to feature specifically in the coalition agreement. And it’s no secret that it was one of the sticking points of the negotiations with Labour – they simply refused to agree to it.

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Rogerson and Teather: pupil premium will help all children

Today the coalition Government announced that plans for a Pupil Premium will go ahead, targeting funding at schools that take pupils from deprived backgrounds.

The premium, a key part of the Liberal Democrats’ 2010 election manifesto, will provide additional per pupil funding on top of the existing funding provided to schools, and will be spent as individual schools choose.

Co-Chair of the Liberal Democrat Parliamentary Committee for Education, Dan Rogerson said:

Labour’s unequal education system left too many children falling behind.

The Liberal Democrats made clear during the election campaign that a Pupil Premium targeted at the most disadvantaged pupils was an

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David Ward MP’s maiden speech

Back when Cix was the main way of talking to other Lib Dems online, a tradition emerged of posting Lib Dem MPs’ maiden speeches so that people could read them and respond – a tradition LDV would like to continue. Yesterday, we brought you Duncan Hames and Simon Wright.

I praise the hon. Member for Liverpool, Wavertree (Luciana Berger) and all those who have made their maiden speeches for their eloquence and endurance. It is customary during a maiden speech to speak in complimentary and glowing terms-indeed, frivolous terms in some cases-about the relevant constituency. However, I hope people …

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Duncan Hames MP’s maiden speech

Back when Cix was the main way of talking to other Lib Dems online, a tradition emerged of posting Lib Dem MPs’ maiden speeches so that people could read them and respond – a tradition LDV would like to continue. Earlier today, we read Simon Wright’s speech, and tomorrow we will bring you David Ward.

Duncan’s speech is also available to view here at the Parliament website until 1 June 2011.

Thank you, Mr. Deputy Speaker, for giving me the opportunity to make my maiden speech so early in this Parliament. I congratulate the hon. Members for Harlow (Robert Halfon) …

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The coalition agreement: public health and schools

Welcome to the seventeenth in a series of posts going through the full coalition agreement section by section. You can read the full coalition document here.

The public health section is very brief and rather anomalous as a section on its own, though given the length of the NHS section splitting this area off makes some sense. There is little of surprise in what there is of this section – public health is important (gosh), it should be improved (shock) and the government will be ambitious (crikey). Innovation is also good (well I never).

The details do however give a flavour of …

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LibLink: Steve Webb – There has been no rightward shift by the Liberal Democrats

At Comment is Free today, Steve Webb MP reiterates the Liberal Democrats’ focus on redistributive policies and fairness.

He’s replying to Tim Horton’s suggestion that the Liberal Democrats have seen a “rightward shift” under Nick Clegg, at the expense of the party’s progressive credentials.

Webb responds with the £10,000 tax allowance, smarter public spending (including introducing the pupil premium and scrapping ID cards) and the Lib Dems’ fairness in politics agenda:

We have argued for an effective cap on political donations, so that no political party in Britain can be bought by sectional interests: the two old parties have, not surprisingly,

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Teachers, Thatcher, tax and troops: Nick Clegg Q&A

Nick Clegg answers questions at Spring Conference, Birmingham

In this afternoon’s Q&A from the Conference hall, Nick Clegg tackled questions from the floor with a relaxed and confident manner that bodes well for the upcoming TV Leaders’ Debates.

He took questions from party members in the hall, before taking supplementaries.

First up was education and whether schools should use the Pupil Premium to reduce class sizes. Nick said that the Pupil Premium seeks to give back trust to teachers and headteachers. Smaller class sizes are important for instilling a sense of self-confidence and …

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Nick: schools should raise their game in exchange for funding and freedom

Here’s how the BBC reports Nick Clegg’s speech today to the Association of School and College Leaders conference:

Head teachers have been asked to “raise their game” as part of a £2.5bn funding deal proposed by the Liberal Democrats. Party leader Nick Clegg called on schools to reinvent the curriculum, raise results and close the attainment between rich and poor.

He told the Association of School and College Leaders conference: “We will find you extra funding, even while elsewhere there are cuts.” In return, the “greatest expectations” will be placed upon them, he said. The Liberal Democrats are proposing a

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IFS on Tories’ pupil premium policy: one in 10 schools could suffer 10%+ budget cuts

The ‘pupil premium’ – the Lib Dem proposal to invest an extra £2.5bn in schools which could be used to cut class sizes, offer one-on-one tuition and provide catch-up classes – is a policy which Nick Clegg has passionately advocated for over seven years. It is now one of the party’s four key policies emphasising fairness – in this case, A fair start for every child – for the coming general election.

This week, the Institute for Fiscal Studies – the independent financial research institute often quoted by the party to validate its economic policies – published an

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Clegg pledges “A fair start for every child”

Plenty of media coverage today of Nick Clegg’s announcement that the Lib Dems will pledge to give every child a fair start in life by investing an extra £2.5bn in schools which could be used to cut class sizes, offer one-on-one tuition and provide catch-up classes.

Once again we see the renewed Lib Dem emphasis on that f-word, Fairness; and in this case, a policy which has long been championed by Nick, the ‘pupil premium’. Here’s Nick describing it in ‘just a minute’ in a BBC interview:

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