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£20m boost for East Lancashire schools
9:01am Monday 2nd September 2013 in News
SCHOOLCHILDREN in East Lancashire are to receive more than £20million in pupil premium for the 2013/14 academic year.
The figure is almost £6.5million more than last year.
The news was welcomed by MPs from across the region, who said the money would be used to help close the attainment gap between poorer children and those from more affluent backgrounds.
The pupil premium, which goes directly to schools rather than councils, was introduced by the Conservative-led government as an additional funding for schools to support disadvantaged pupils as well as youngsters from service families and looked-after children.
The local authority receiving the largest sum is Blackburn, which will get £5,567,000.
MP Jack Straw said: “This money will come as a relief to many schools and I hope it will be used wisely.”
Burnley will get £3,842,000 and schools in Hyndburn will receive £3,729,000. MP for Hyndburn Graham Jones said: “I have been working with Hyndburn Council very closely to identify people that are likely to be entitled to free school meals, which then qualifies the school for the pupil premium.
“Thousands of families were written to to make sure they receive what they are entitled to.
“It has been a very important initiative and I am absolutely delighted that the work that we have done and the work that the schools have done has been recognised.”
Schools in Rossendale and Darwen are also set to receive £2,086,000, and pupils in the Ribble Valley will share just over £1.1million.
In Pendle, the amount for 2013/14 stands at £2,135,000, almost £1million more than the year before.
Pendle MP Andrew Stephenson said: “As a school governor in Pendle, I know the importance of investing in education, especially for pupils from the poorest background.
“I have seen how much the pupil premium can help.
“I strongly supported the introduction of the pupil premium and am pleased funding has increased so substantially despite the difficult public finances.”
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