Disadvantaged pupils handed boost

SCHOOLS in North Somerset had a big cash bonus after the Government announced that disadvantaged pupils in the district would receive more money.

The Government has upped its pupil premiums – designed to benefit the most disadvantaged pupils – to more than �1.6million after a boost of �249,500.

That extra money, announced by Children and Families Minister Sarah Teather, means the amount of money per pupil has risen for �433 to �488.

Next year’s pupil premium is set to be doubled from the current amount to �1.25billion for all children nationwide, with that figure set to rise to �2.5billion by 2014/15.

Mike Bell, a member of North Somerset Council said: “It is a shocking fact that pupils from disadvantaged backgrounds are three times less likely to achieve five good GCSEs than their more well-off classmates.

“Education is the best way to end the underachievement of disadvantaged pupils through supporting children comprehensively from early years straight through to secondary school.”