Birmingham received the largest allocation of pupil premium funding in 2017 to 2018, new figures show.
During the last academic year, LEA-run schools in Birmingham received a total of £29,729,416 of pupil premium funding, the grant given to schools in England, allocated to schools for each pupil who is eligible for free school meals.
Kent schools received £17,742,093 during the year, while Essex was the next largest at £15,101,713.
However, schools only receive pupil premium funding if parents register for free school meals. Stigma can hold parents back from registering, as well as language barriers and complicated applications, while Universal Infant Free School Meals has also led to some parents not applying for free school meals – and therefore pupil premium – because their child receives a free meal anyway.
Figures were obtained by exam revision course provider Justin Craig Education, which found that 38% of pupils in secondary schools covered by London LEA were eligible for pupil premium funding and were allocated almost £150m during the year.
In Islington, 69% of all pupils were eligible for pupil premium, followed by Tower Hamlets (64%) and Newham (56%). Over half (52%) of pupils in Manchester LEA-run schools were eligible for the funding.
“It’s really interesting to see exactly where the funding is being allocated to and which places within England are putting the focus on their budget on education,” said Stephen Moore, director of operations at Justin Craig.
“As we all know the education of the younger generations is the most vital attribute to maintaining a future for our country, so it’s great to see funding is going to those that really need the extra help. It would be interesting to see exactly what the funding goes on and if this is helping our children in the best way possible.”