North Wiltshire MP, James Gray, raised the issue of funding for young people in Armed Forces families in post-16 education.
He raised with Andrew Murrison, Minister for Defence People, Veterans and Service Families, why the Service Pupil Premium ends when children reach the age of 16.
Mr Gray stated during Defence Questions yesterday:
“My right hon. and gallant Friend will know that in Wiltshire alone we have 7,000 service children in our schools and that some 96% of all schools in Wiltshire have service kids in them, many of whom benefit from the services pupil premium. That is great, but it ends at age 16. Surely there is an argument in favour of continuing to help those children from 16 to 18, as we have changed the education system as a whole and education at 18 has become the norm.”
The Minister, also from Wiltshire, responded with:
“I am very grateful to my hon. and gallant Friend and near neighbour. He invites me to ensure that Wiltshire gets more cash, in particular the excellent Wiltshire College. That is very tempting indeed. I hear what he says, and nobody is keener than I am on improving skills, particularly post 16. I am more than happy to discuss the issue with him, but I suspect that what he suggests would have a significant price tag and our colleagues in the Treasury would rather I did not commit.”