MPs demand Free School Meal action plan to cope with arrival of Universal Credit

Education ministers must act to tackle the “potentially destabilising impact” of Universal Credit on our ability to identify disadvantaged pupils and therefore ensure that schools receive the appropriate Pupil Premium funding, MPs have said.

The House of Commons Committee of Public Accounts has also added its voice to those calling for the quick publication of proposals for a fairer national system of school funding.

On the Pupil Premium itself, the committee’s report – Funding for Disadvantaged Pupils – says that while there has been some narrowing of the attainment gap more must be done to spread Pupil Premium best practice.

Pupil Premium payments amount to £1,300 per child at primary school and £935 at secondary school and the free school meals (FSM) system is the main indicator of eligibility.

Between 2011/12 and the end of 2014/15, the Department for Education (DfE) distributed £6 billion of Pupil Premium funding to schools.

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