The Pupil Premium Plus (PP+) is grant funding from the Department for Education to raise the achievement of disadvantaged pupils and to close the gaps with their peers. The PP+ for Children Cared for by Torbay is managed by Torbay Virtual School.


In April 2014 the Government introduced PP+. Each Cared For Child now attracts funding of £2345 for each financial year from the date they enter care. In April 2015 this was extended to include Cared For Children in Early Years settings attracting £302 for Pupil Premium (not known as PP+). It is available the term after their third birthday.

The Pupil Premium Plus is set at £2345 for all Cared for Children in Reception – Y11 for the financial year April 2021 – March 2022.

The DfE has conditions of grant and you can read about it in the Pupil premium: virtual school heads’ responsibilities.

The Role of the Virtual School Head

The Children and Families Act 2014 requires all Local Authorities to have a Virtual School Headteacher who has additional statutory powers to carry out the duty to promote the educational achievement of the children it looks after.  The Government has set out with statutory force that the Virtual School Head is responsible for managing the PP+ budget. The Virtual School Head must manage the grant allocation to be used for the benefit of the educational needs of each Cared for Children as identified in their Personal Education Plan.

Use of Pupil Premium Plus

The Pupil Premium Plus is an opportunity to address the learning needs of a cared for child through the provision of additional interventions and learning resources tailored to the individual child’s need. It is not intended to replace services, support or resources that the Local Authority, schools, Early Years settings, carers or other agencies working with cared for children already provide, or that is provided to all children as part of the universal education offer. Spending should provide additional interventions, resources, activities or support to that which is received from other services. In particular, funding should not be used to replace:

  • The support set out in an Education, Health and Care Plan (EHC) or those attached to a school based plan for additional special educational needs.
  • Interventions that have no additional cost and where the Early Years setting or school’s own funding covers the cost.
  • Resources that a Local Authority provides through its allowance to foster carers or children’s homes fees. Carers have an allocation for clothing, uniform and out of school activities within reason.
  • Trips and visits organised by the school as part of the curriculum. If these are part of the curriculum or specifically related to exams, schools can only request a donation. It would be expected that Social Care or carer should provide resources for these activities.
  • Basic equipment that the child or young person needs to participate in lessons or for school uniform, school lunches or equipment for PE lessons.
  • Before or after school childcare clubs.

On occasions, there are specific activities that improve self-esteem or social skills or are linked to raising aspiration. These must be clearly linked to the child’s learning objectives recorded in the PEP along with how it will contribute to improved educational outcomes.


The allocation of Pupil Premium Plus (PP+) is directly through the Personal Education Plan (PEP) process. Torbay Virtual School uses an electronic PEP and every Designated Teacher has access to this.

When a child becomes cared for the PEP must be held within 10 working days. For children and young people in Reception through to Y11 a PEP is held every term following the initial PEP. In the event of a child changing school the PEP will need to be completed within 10 days and a Planning for Success meeting must be held prior to the child commencing at the school.

PP+ will only be provided to meet the needs in a high quality plan in the PEP with clear quantitative targets for improvement, underpinned by well-targeted support.

PP+ must be used to improve outcomes for children in the following areas:

  • Academic achievement and progress
  • Wider achievement (for example in an area in which the child is gifted and talented
  • Attendance
  • Inclusion (by reducing internal and external exclusion)
  • Emotional Health and Well Being including social skills
  • Transition into the next key stage and/or a new learning provider

Once the Personal Education Plan is complete and the targets submitted the PEP will be scrutinised by the Virtual School Headteacher to ensure it is complete, of a high quality and that the targets address the need of the child and that the child has been an active participant in the process. Once targets have been approved it will be noted on the ePEP and the payment will follow within a seven week window. If the targets are rejected or the PEP is not of a high enough standard feedback will be given to the Designated Teacher.

It must be noted that there is only an allocation of £2345 per child and whilst the Virtual School will work to the needs of each child there is no guarantee that higher payments can be authorised. Designated Teachers, if there is a need for higher than this, should speak to a member of the Virtual School prior to the PEP meeting for advice.

Please note: some schools in Torbay will have Cared for Children from other Local Authority’s and if you have a query about PP+ for a Cared for Child who is on your roll but belongs to another Local Authority then please contact the relevant Virtual School Headteacher directly.

Monitoring Impact

The Personal Education Plan will be used to inform discussions with schools and other stakeholders on the use of PP+. Each PEP therefore needs to be of a high quality and set robust targets for improvement. Targets must be reviewed from the previous PEP and an honest reflection of why the target may not have been met. An evaluation of the impact of PP+ is vital.

During inspection for both the Virtual School and individual school’s inspections the quality of PEPS will be checked and questions asked about the impact of the PP+. The Designated Teacher should ensure that the impact of PP+ is at least included in the Annual Report on Cared for Children to their Governing Body or equivalent and at best included in termly reports to the Governing Body’s. The Virtual School monitors the overall impact of PP+ for all Cared for Children in the school and is accountable to its Governing Body and the Corporate Parent’s Board for ensuring the funding is effectively used with maximum impact.

Early Years Pupil Premium

From April 2015 additional targeted funding for cared for children has been available as an Early Years Pupil Premium for three and four year olds. From April 2017 this will be monitored by the Virtual School and is available to settings in both Torbay and other Local Authority’s if a Torbay Cared for Child is in that setting, is eligible and has an Early Years PEP in place. Further information on the EY PEP is available from the Virtual School.

Jane Inett
Headteacher – Torbay Virtual School

April 2021