The Government believes that the Pupil Premium, which is additional to main school funding, is the best way to address the current underlying inequalities between children eligible for free school meals (FSM) and their wealthier peers by ensuring that funding to tackle disadvantage reaches the pupils who need it most.
The Pupil Premium is allocated to children from low-income families who are currently known to be eligible for FSM in both mainstream and non-mainstream settings and children who have been looked after continuously for more than six months.
The Government decided that eligibility for the Pupil Premium in 2012-13 was to be extended to pupils who have been eligible for free school meals (FSM) at any point in the previous 6 years. As a group, children who have been eligible for FSM at any point in time have consistently lower educational attainment than those who have never been eligible for FSM.
A premium is also available for children whose parents are currently serving in the armed forces and looked after children.