£500 “catch-up premium” for those in danger of falling behind

National Numeracy has welcomed the announcement by Deputy Prime minister Nick Clegg of an additional £500 to help pupils who have slipped behind in maths and English by the end of primary school. The money will be paid to secondary schools for each new pupil who is below the expected Level 4 at the age of 11 – in 2012, 16 per cent of pupils leaving primary school failed to gain a Level 4. We hope that the initiative will help genuine improvements in the teaching and learning of numeracy and also literacy.

Our Chief Executive, Mike Ellicock, said "I am delighted to see that this government is committing itself to further support to enable school pupils become the numerate adults that our economy, and our society, so acutely needs."

The funding, which is being made available because of an underspend in the Department for Education’s (DfE) budget, will be allocated to schools in January and guaranteed every year for the rest of this Parliament.

In yesterday’s announcement, Nick Clegg said: “I can announce that from this year, we will provide a new ‘catch-up premium’ – an additional £500 for every child who leaves primary school below the expected level in English or maths. If you’re a parent whose child has fallen behind; who fears they might get lost in that daunting leap from primary to secondary school; and who is worried by talk about making exams tougher, let me reassure you. We will do whatever it takes to make sure your child is not left behind. A place in a summer school; catch-up classes; one-to-one tuition; we are providing the help they need. So yes, we’re raising the bar. But we’re ensuring every child can clear it too.”

Watch the full speech.