DFE Clarify Virtual School Head’s Responsibility

FAQ ‘s – Pupil Premium and the role of the Virtual School Head.

The Department for Education clarified how the Virtual School Head (VSH) has a pivotal role in distributing and monitoring the pupil premium for looked after children on the 20 March 2014.

The pupil premium will be managed by the Virtual School Head who will be responsible for its distribution and effectiveness in raising achievement and will be accountable to the Director of Children’s Services and/or Chief Executive and the Lead Member for Children.

There is no requirement for an authority to pass the funding on to school to meet the needs identified in the personal education plan. The expectation is that funding will go to schools via the Virtual Head.

Key points of the guidance:

  • The virtual school head decides how the funding is distributed
  • The VSH is expected to pass on the pupil premium to a child’s education setting  to meet additional needs set out in the PEP.
  • The pupil premium can be passed on termly or annually.
  • Funding not used by the end of the financial year goes back to the department.
  • The VSH decides the amount of funding – it can be higher or lower than the £1900 of grant allocation per child.
  • Funding can be pooled.
  • The pupil premium should not be used to fund central services – it is to be used expressly to raise the achievement of disadvantaged pupils.
  • The pupil premium does not replace the personal education allowance.
  • The pupil premium is more focussed on support to improve the educational achievement of LAC and close the gap between LAC and none LAC.
  • The pupil premium should always support the educational achievement as described in the personal education plan.
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