Thousands of disadvantaged schoolchildren across the South East are reaping the benefit of the Pupil Premium, Local Euro MP Catherine Bearder said today.
Figures show that more youngsters from poorer backgrounds in local authorities across the region achieved five or more GCSEs at A* to C grade than those in 2012.
This rise comes as payments introduced by the Liberal Democrats in Government begin to have a greater impact.
The pupil premium puts additional money into schools with more children from disadvantaged backgrounds in order to help close the gap between them and their peers.
n the 2013 to 2014 financial year, secondary schools will receive an additional £900 for each pupil on free school meals.
Ofsted said the figures showed headteachers were spending cash from the pupil premium more effectively to help support disadvantaged pupils reach their potential.
Local Liberal Democrat MEP, Catherine Bearder, said: "The Pupil Premium is helping to transform the opportunities of thousands of disadvantaged pupils across the South East, whether it's through literacy classes, catch up lessons or one-to-one tuition.
"But this is just the start. The Lib Dems are now increasing the pupil premium budget to £2.5 billion in 2015, and in future we want to see this help extended to disadvantaged three and four-year-olds as well.
"This is about building communities where every child has the opportunity and funding to help them succeed and get on in life."
- Pupil premium now totals £1,300 per primary aged pupil, £935 per secondary aged pupil and £1,900 for looked after children or children who left care through adoption, or by other means
- The latest exam figures are from 2013 and come from Ofsted.