Brilliant Club

Pupil Premium – What is it?

30 Mar 2021

What is the pupil premium?

The Pupil Premium Grant (PPG) is a government scheme designed to narrow the attainment gap for disadvantaged pupils in publicly funded state schools in England. Introduced in 2011, the scheme was launched as a response to the findings of several research papers which found that:

While the government allocates this extra funding, school leaders decide how the extra funding is distributed and used in their schools.

The Scholars Programme, designed by The Brilliant Club, is cited by Ofsted as aneffective use of pupil premium,  building pupils’ cultural capital and providing academic support.

Which pupils qualify for pupil premium funding?

The pupil premium is allocated based on the number of pupils who are registered in these categories:

Free School Meals

Looked-after and previously looked-after pupils


Which schools are eligible for pupil premium?

The pupil premium grant is allocated to publicly funded schools in England, encompassing:

Local authority-maintained schools, including:

Academies and free schools, including:


Non-maintained special schools:


How do schools use the pupil premium?

School leaders, including the Senior Leadership Team (SLT), decide how to use the pupil premium in their respective schools. The government acknowledges that they are best placed to understand the needs of their pupils.

Recommended by the Education Endowment Foundation, many schools adopt a three-tier approach to the pupil premium which splits the funding into three categories:

While some schools choose to adopt their own model, the aim to close the attainment gap remains the same. Many schools adopt these practices of distributing the pupil premium.

How are schools held accountable for spending the pupil premium?

Schools are required to maintain transparency by demonstrating how they are spending the pupil premium effectively:

Where can I find out more?

To learn more about the pupil premium, the government has published a policy paper here.

For further information into pupil premium interventions click here.

For updates into the pupil premium system click here.