The Institute for Fiscal Studies and the ESRC Centre for the Microeconomic Analysis of Public Policy influenced the debate on the eventual shape of the 'pupil premium' scheme by confirming for policymakers that decisions made were based on solid analytical foundations.

Impacts

  • The IFS was involved at most stages of the policy development, starting with a formal response to the consultation and a number of informal meetings with the Department for Education - mostly focused on technical aspects of the analysis and interpretation of the data behind the case for a pupil premium
  • IFS/CPP researchers provided quantitative underpinning for the policy, which was particularly important for the department
  • The pre-election IFS/CPP analysis, and post-election technical advice and review, were acknowledged as valuable, timely and relevant by key department staff.

About the research

The Institute for Fiscal Studies and the ESRC Centre for the Microeconomic Analysis of Public Policy influenced the debate on the eventual shape of the 'pupil premium' scheme by confirming for policymakers that decisions made were based on solid analytical foundations.

The Institute for Fiscal Studies and the Centre for the Microeconomic Analysis of Public Policy (IFS/CPP) has a long track record of research and commentary on school funding in general, and more recently has focused on targeted funding such as the pupil premium. In 2008 it published a report on the high level of redistribution within the school funding system.

Between 2010 and 2013 IFS/CPP was involved in the shaping and implementation of the pupil premium announced in the 2010 Spending Review. The scheme provided a specific grant following disadvantaged pupils who, on average, had lower levels of educational attainment and therefore needed extra support.

In the run-up to the 2010 general election two political parties announced intentions to introduce a pupil premium. The IFS/CPP analysed the major policy issues in a paper during the election. This was backed up by a pre-election mini-conference that attracted a wide range of participants, followed by other dissemination events.

Following the Coalition Government's launch of a consultation on the pupil premium in July 2010, the IFS/CPP played an active part both formally and informally in the process leading up to the policy announcement, made in the Chancellor's Autumn Statement in November 2010. This input influenced the final shape of the pupil premium and its staged implementation. The pupil premium took effect from April 2011.