Local authorities are set to lose out on millions in pupil premium funding – allocated to support children on free school meals or who are looked after to achieve at school – as government funding changes come into force.
Labour analysis of freedom of information requests reveals that almost 30,000 children across a quarter of local authorities will miss out on extra support to help them fulfil their potential. Nationally this suggests that as many as 120,000 children could be missing out on support worth up to £133 million.
Across the country pupils eligible for the pupil premium funding are also those most likely to have struggled to learn during lockdown, been left without devices due to the Government’s delayed laptop distribution and completed fewer hours of learning each day compared with their peers.
Kate Green MP, Labour’s Shadow Education Secretary, said:
“The Conservatives’ stealth cut to school budgets shows disregard for children’s futures as we recover from this pandemic.
“The Government’s mishandling of the Covid crisis has kept children out of school, missing out on learning and time with friends, and now they are cutting support that would help children most likely to have struggled with learning over the last year.
“The Conservatives have neglected children through this pandemic and now risk leaving them behind in our recovery.”
Read Labour’s full press release here.