Skip to main content
Search Results

Report finds FSM eligibility increased by almost 300,000

18th Jan 2022 - 09:24
A new report by the National Foundation for Educational Research (NFER) discovered that the Covid-19 pandemic ‘precipitated a sharp increase in the number of families in poverty’, with the number of free school meals eligible pupils increasing by almost 300,000 between January 2020 and 2021.

The report also found that pupils who became FSM eligible during the pandemic were disproportionately from more disadvantaged areas. These pupils were also more likely to be from an ethnic minority group and have English as an additional language.

The NFER report highlighted that the Pupil Premium grant has not been successful at ensuring that funding for disadvantaged pupils is protected over time. If the PP grant had kept in-line with inflation since 2014/15, then primary and secondary schools would be receiving £160 and £127 more per PP pupil today, compared to what they actually receive.

It recommends that the government ‘commits to increasing the pupil premium in line with school-level inflation over the next five years’, as part of a longer-term commitment to build back better and support social mobility as the country emerges from the pandemic.

To read the full NFER report, visit here.

Written by
Edward Waddell