The figure, set out in a letter to councils from the Department for Education, represents a 50 per cent increase on the £14.8m that councils received in 2015/16.
It takes the combined government funding for the first three years of Staying Put to £44.4m – 11 per cent more than the £40m first announced for the three-year period in December 2013.
It has previously been claimed that a lack of funding is harming Staying Put. A report published in December by the Nationwide Association of Fostering Providers warned that the £40m additional government funding for councils to implement the scheme – which gives all fostered children the right to request to stay in their placement from the age of 18 up to 21 – is not enough due to wider cuts across children’s services.
Last month children’s minister Edward Timpson revealed details of Staying Put take-up rates in all English local authority areas.
Across England, there were 3,230 young people in a foster placement on their 18th birthday during the year ending 31 March 2015.
Of these, a total of 1,560 remained with their former foster carers three months after their 18th birthday – representing 48.3 per cent of the total.