Pupil premium plus (PP+)

Pupil Premium Plus provides additional funding for education settings to support the progress and educational attainment of children in care. 

The funding is provided by the Department of Education and the Virtual School devolves it to education settings. 

All children in care to North Northamptonshire Council enrolled in school from reception to year 11 are eligible. 

Conditions of PP+ funding

If a school completes an adequate termly Personal Education Plan (PEP) for the child the Virtual School will devolve the PP+ payment for the next term.

The Pupil Premium Plus (PP+) is grant funding from the DfE to raise the achievement of looked after children and to close the gap with their peers.

For the financial year 2024 to 2025 the Virtual School will receive £2,570 of PP+ funding for eligible pupils from Year R to 11 who are looked after by North and West Northamptonshire Local Authorities.

The current conditions of grant are set out in the Department for Education guidance.

These arrangements are for children who are looked after by North Northamptonshire Council and West Northamptonshire Council, wherever they are living. Other arrangements will apply to children looked after by other local authorities, even if they are attending Northamptonshire education settings. 


ESFA will allocate to local authorities in June 2024 a provisional amount of £2,570 per child looked after for at least one day, as recorded in the March 2023 children looked-after data return (SSDA903), and aged 4 to 15 on 31 August 2022.

ESFA will update and finalise this allocation in December 2024 based on the number of children looked after for at least one day during the year ending March 2024, as recorded in the March 2024 children looked-after data return (SSDA903), and aged 4 to 15 on 31 August 2023.   

Virtual School Head 

The Children and Families Act 2014 requires all Local Authorities to have a Virtual School Head (VSH) who has the responsibility of ensuring the local authority’s duty to promote the education achievement of looked after children is discharged. 

VSHs are responsible for managing pupil premium funding for the children they look after and for allocating it to education settings. 

VSHs, working with education settings, should implement PP+ arrangements for all looked-after children, in need of support for whom the authority is responsible, in accordance with the latest conditions of grant published by the department and any supplementary departmental advice it issues. VSHs have considerable flexibility in the use of PP+ funding to maximise its impact for individual looked-after children as well as the looked-after cohort.

2024/25 financial year 

As per the previous year, The Northamptonshire Virtual School will divide the total amount of £2,570 into three instalments. 

  • £850 in the summer term
  • £860 in the autumn term
  • £860 in the spring term

The termly instalment will be devolved automatically to education settings upon completion of a Personal Education Plan (PEP) in the previous term. The Virtual School will withhold PP+ funding from education settings whose plans are quality assured as ‘inadequate’ unless there are exceptional circumstances. The PEP document will need to provide a comprehensive plan of how the funding will be spent and must be linked to clear SMART targets. 

If a child is new to care and a PEP is completed in the term they enter care, the PP+ monies for that term will be devolved to schools. 

Out-of-county schools and settings who have not previously received payments from North Northamptonshire Council or West Northamptonshire Council will be contacted with a request for their financial details. Schools and settings who have previously been paid by North or West Northamptonshire, but have changed their details, will also be required to complete and return an ‘Out of County Schools Bank Details Form’ to the Virtual School.           

As the Virtual School devolves the full amount of PP+ to education settings, it is not possible for education settings to apply for extra funding in addition to that already devolved.  

Monitoring impact 

The Virtual School and the education setting, namely the designated teacher, are jointly responsible for ensuring that the PP+ is being spent appropriately and for the benefit of the cohort of looked-after children and their individual needs. 

The impact of the PP+ will be measured within the termly PEP review through the evaluation of the SMART targets which have been set. PP+ should be used on evidence-based interventions that support progress in the following areas:

  • academic achievement and progress
  • attendance and inclusion
  • social and emotional development  
  • wider achievement
  • transition

When it won't be provided 

Pupil Premium Plus will not be used to replace funding which should already have been allocated to the school to support the child.

It will specifically not fund services that must be provided by other statutory bodies (e.g. Education, Health and Care).

Pupil Premium Plus will not be provided to education settings when the termly PEP review is not completed. 

Early Years Pupil Premium

The Early Years Pupil Premium (EYPP) gives providers additional funding to support disadvantaged three- and four-year-old pupils. 

The Virtual School Head is responsible for informing a provider that a child in care to Northamptonshire is attending their setting. The setting is responsible for applying for EYPP to the local authority in which the setting is based. 

Further information:

Previously looked after children

In addition, and through a separate process, schools will be allocated for each child adopted from care in England and Wales, subject to a child arrangement order or special guardianship order, £2,530 passed directly to the school. However, this grant is outside the remit of the Virtual School Head and will not be distributed by the Virtual School. 

Support and advice 

The Virtual School is happy to discuss the arrangements and to support schools with training. Other support can be found at:  


The Virtual School automatically transfers the full amount of PP+ funding to education settings. This is given in termly instalments and the Virtual School devolves £2,570 annually per eligible child.

TermValue of PP+ payment
Summer 2024£850
Autumn 2024£860
Spring 2025£860

How to best use PP+ funding

PP+ funding should be used to promote the education (in the widest sense) of the child.

You may wish to consider expenditure which addresses:

  • academic achievement and progress
  • social, emotional and mental health 
  • wider achievement, perhaps in an area where the child is talented 
  • transition to the next Key Stage 
  • transition to a new education setting 
  • extra-curricular activities 

PP+ for previously looked-after children

Schools also receive PP+ funding for each eligible previously looked-after child on their roll. They are eligible if they were in care to an English or Welsh local authority and then left care because one of the following applied.

They were:

  • adopted
  • subject to a special guardianship order (SGO)
  • subject to a child arrangements order

Schools should record any eligible previously looked-after children on the October census to receive funding from central Government in the following April. The Virtual School has no role in the distribution of PP+ funding for previously looked-after children.

The funding is not a personal budget and should be spent for the benefit of the previously looked-after cohort. Schools should encourage parents and guardians to participate in discussions about how PP+ funding can support their child.

Children who were adopted from state care elsewhere in the world are not eligible for PP+ funding.

Children who were in care and returned to birth parents are not eligible for PP+ funding.

Last updated 04 June 2024