The Communities First Pupil Deprivation Match Fund will enable a significant number of Clusters in Wales to secure additional funding if they can demonstrate how they will work with schools within the school environment and community to improve the outcomes of young people who live in poverty.
There is already much good practice of close joint working between schools and the Communities First Programme and the Welsh Government wants to further encourage and support this. Communities First Clusters and schools will need to work together to develop proposals and submit them to the Welsh Government for consideration. The fund will be available from 1 April 2013 until 31 March 2015.
Local Government and Communities Minister Carl Sargeant said:
“Young people living in deprived areas are more likely to experience multiple deprivation than their peers in more prosperous areas. They are less likely to come from working households, more likely to be poor and have lower life expectancy. To break the cycle of poverty it is essential that we work together to ensure children from poor households have every opportunity to reach their full potential and that the effects of living in poverty are reduced.
"When I announced the first Communities First Clusters I said that the new programme would have a stronger emphasis on tackling poverty and that Clusters each have delivery plans that show how they intend to contribute to improvements in health, education and the economy.
"This fund gives Clusters the opportunity to further demonstrate how they will work with the schools in their areas to tackle poverty and its impact on young people’s educational achievement.”
Minister for Education and Skills, Leighton Andrews said:
“We want to break the link between poverty and poor educational outcomes. This fund will further enhance our Pupil Deprivation Grant by helping to tackle the root causes of poverty from within the community and improve outcomes for children from deprived backgrounds.”