What do we know about tuition funding for next year?

Since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, the Department for Education has released several types of tuition funding aimed at helping disadvantaged students catch up on lost learning.

The most notable of these initiatives have been the National Tutoring Programme, which includes three routes: Tuition Partners, Academic Mentors, and the very popular School-Led Tutoring Grant, announced at the beginning of this academic year. Post GCSE, colleges and training providers had access to 16 to 19 funding.

While these programmes have helped schools support millions of the most vulnerable pupils, some of the routes have proven to be more popular than others, leading the Department for Education (DfE) to announce a new overhaul of tuition funding for the next academic year. But what’s this going to look like, and what new pots of money will be available from September?

Is tuition funding due to increase?

Yes! We know that in the recent Schools White Paper, the DfE’s has announced that up to 6 million tutoring courses, each providing 15 hours of tutoring, will be introduced by 2024.  This is great news: it means that tuition is, indeed, here to stay, and it’ll become a permanent feature of the school system.

What pots of money were available in 21/22?

In the 21/22 AY, secondary schools had access to various types of funding meant for catch-up tuition: the main ones were the flagship National Tutoring Programme, and the recently introduced School-Led Tutoring Grant (SLTG).

The Tuition Partners route of the National Tutoring Programme was originally launched in 2020, allowing schools to access high-quality small group tuition (3:1) provided by one of 30+ approved Tuition Partners at a heavily subsidised rate (70% in 21/22). Schools could book tuition via the NTP subject to specific conditions: tuition had to be delivered primarily in small groups and 15-hour blocks, and schools had to ensure that 65%+ of the pupils signed up for the programme were Pupil Premium. Schools can access subsidised tuition via Tuition Partners for the entire duration of the AY, including the summer holidays.

On the other hand, the School-Led Tutoring grant, introduced in September 2021, gave schools £203 per pupil for 60% of their Pupil Premium to spend on tuition however they liked. The grant is paid directly to schools in instalments and can be used at the schools’ discretion, as long as it’s to provide tuition.

School could choose whether to source tutors locally, use their own staff, or opt for an online tutoring provider (like MyTutor). The SLTG is “use it or lose it”, and any outstanding amount will be clawed back by the DfE at the end of the summer holidays.

The greater flexibility of the School-Led Tutoring Grant (and the much lower admin requirements) made it by far the most popular choice. Between September 2021 and March 2022, over 675,000 of the 887,521 tuition courses that made use of one of the catch-up funds were booked using the SLTG – that’s over 85%.

What tuition funding will be available next academic year?

The Department for Education has decided leave schools more freedom to decide how to use their funding, announcing that next year, £349 million of tutoring funding will go directly to schools

This pot of money – a new iteration on the NTP – will cover 60% of the cost of tuition for 15 lessons. Schools can choose to use either an approved Tuition Partner, or their own staff. And if a school opts for the former, they’ll get to contact the Tuition Partner directly, making the process much simpler compared to last year.

We will update this blog with more information as soon as we get them, so keep your eyes peeled!

Do you have any questions about tuition funding, or how you can make the most of the pots of money available to support your pupils? We can help! Book a 15-min call with one of the team, and we’ll explain everything in plain English!

Let’s talk funding

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