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AFC - Previously looked-after children
AfC Virtual School

Previously Looked-After Children

Support and advice for previously looked-after children's parents, guardians and schools


Pupil Premium Plus


Every child adopted from care from England and Wales attracts a grant of £2,345 per annum as long as they have been in care for at least 24 hours. This also applies to children and young people with a Special Guardianship Order (SGO) or care arrangements order. This funding, known as Pupil Premium Plus (sometimes abbreviated to PPP, PPG or PP+) is paid directly by the government to your school. Your school is required to use the funding to promote educational achievement and emotional and social welfare by providing specific, targeted support. Children and young people are eligible for this grant between reception and Year 11.

In order for your school to receive this grant, each eligible child must be recorded on the annual October school census, a change by the DfE introduced retrospectively in 2021. Funds are expected to be paid by April each year. Previous to this alteration of dates, eligibility was recorded on the basis of the annual January census of schools. Mainstream and special schools only can claim PPP by accounting for the number of children in each category. 

Unfortunately Pupil Premium Plus funding is not available to all previously looked-after children. Children are not eligible if they have been adopted from outside England and Wales, including Scotland and Northern Ireland, as well as from overseas unless it can be demonstrated that they have been previously looked after by a public authority, a religious organisation or other provider of care whose sole purpose is to benefit society. Children who are home educated are not eligible for the grant.

The statutory guidance on the roles and responsibilities of designated teachers suggests that where parents are unable to provide clear evidence of their child’s status, schools will need to use their discretion.

To receive the Pupil Premium Plus grant, a child or young person must be registered on the October census. If they have not been registered, the funding will not be forthcoming from the DfE until the following year. Because there is only one opportunity to register each year, your school should be aware of the adoptive status of children and have had sight of the relevant documents (redacted if preferred by the parent) in advance of the October census. 

Early years funding

Children aged 2 years old who have been adopted from care are entitled to a free early education place. They can also benefit from the Early Years Pupil Premium (EYPP) when they are aged 3 and 4. This contributes additional funding to early education placements to help your child’s nursery or childminder to help improve the education they provide for children who need more support. Parents will need to tell you as the education provider that their child is adopted in order for them to claim the EYPP.

Excellence in Education Plan

Every child and young person looked-after will have a Personal Education Plan, known as a PEP or e-PEP.  It provides them with a record of how professionals around the child, such as social workers and education professionals will support their educational needs and achievement. The child or young person looked after will also play a part in expressing their own needs and aspirations at their bi- or tri-annual PEP meetings.

Once a child becomes previously looked-after there is no statutory requirement for a PEP, but the tools provided by it may also be valuable for them, their families and professionals around the child.

Several schools have developed their own version of PEPs for previously looked after children, including Orleans Primary school’s Excellence in Education plan, developed with AfC Virtual School. This is known as an EEP and is now available to be used by all schools. You can download a copy (below) to use as a framework for discussing the educational and wider needs of previously looked-after children in school with their parents and other members of staff.