From April 2015, nurseries, schools, childminders and other childcare providers will be able to claim extra funding through the Early Years Pupil Premium to support children's development, learning and care. We wanted to write to you and explain what the Early Years Pupil Premium is, explain who is eligible for this funding and, importantly, to ask you to fill out the specific forms available so that we as a provider can claim the extra funding.
What is the pupil premium
National data research tells that children eligible for free school meals tend to do less well, for example in 2014 45% of children eligible for free school meals achieved the expected level at the end of the early years foundation stage compared with 64% of other children. The Early Years Pupil Premium will provide us with extra funding to close this gap.
The Early Years Pupil Premium provides an extra 53 pence per hour for three and four year old children whose parents are in receipt of certain benefits or who were formally in local authority care but who have left care because they were adopted or were subject to a special guardianship or child arrangements order. This means an extra 302 pounds a year for each child taking up the full 570 hours funded entitlement to early education. This additional money could make a significant difference to us.
We can use the extra funding in any way we choose to improve the quality of the early years education that we provide for your child. This could include for example the additional training for our staff on early language, investing in partnership working with our colleagues in the area to further our expertise or supporting our staff in working on specialised areas such as speech and language.
It is well documented that high quality early education can influence how well a child does at both primary and secondary school so we do want to make the most of this additional funding. You may be aware if you have older children that a pupil premium has been available in school age children and it has proved to have given a real boost to the children receiving the funding. We want to do the same for our early years children entitled to this funding.
For each child who receives Pupil Premium we have a detailed plan as to how this money is being used to raise attainment of these children. The plan identifies individuals and sets out interventions specific to their needs. The plan aims to get as many children in age appropriate bands in the 3 Prime areas and Literacy and Numeracy by the time they leave nursery to start school. We will do this by focusing lots of support for children to develop their communication skills.