If you are facing financial barriers, you can access a range of support to help you with your studies. With a range of support available, including meals and travel passes, you don’t need to let money worries hold you back from your future.

Bursaries and funding

You may be eligible to receive funding to support your time in further education and help with education-related costs that arise during the school year.

16–18 Priority Fund

If you are a young person who falls into a vulnerable group, you can apply for our 16-18 Priority Fund. The amount you will receive will depend on your personal costs and you may be eligible if you:

  • Are in or have recently left local authority care
  • Receive a form of government benefits, such as Income Support, Universal Credit, Disability Living Allowance (DLA) and/or Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)

You can read more about eligibility for the 16-18 Priority Fund at gov.uk.

16–19 Discretionary Bursary

The 16-19 Discretionary Bursary is for young people who require financial support in order to remain in further education. The bursary can support with:

  • Meals
  • Travel and transport
  • Clothing
  • Books and equipment
  • Trips and visits which are required as part of your course

19+ Discretionary Fund

The 19+ Discretionary Fund is available to students who have a total household income of less than £30,000 a year, or are supported by someone who receives a means-tested benefit (a benefit that depends on the amount of income they earn). To be eligible you must:

  • Be enrolled on a further education or government-funded course
  • Be a UK resident or have indefinite leave to remain
  • Be a non-UK resident who has been granted full ‘refugee’ or ‘asylum seeker’ status

You can find details of how to apply for any of the above funding below.

Course-related costs

There are lots of ways we can support you with course-related costs. Depending on your individual circumstances, some of the financial support we may be able to offer includes:

  • Free lunches
  • Stationery
  • Support funds
  • Travel passes
  • Bursaries
  • Equipment
  • Trips
  • Childcare costs

Childcare costs

Don’t let childcare worries stand in your way. We offer two different types of funding to help with the costs of childcare whilst you study.

  • 16-19 Care to Learn scheme

    If you are under 20 years of age, you can apply for the government’s Care to Learn scheme which pays for childcare with an Ofsted-registered provider while you are at college. The maximum amount you can receive is £160 per week for each child. The Care to Learn scheme can cover deposit and registration fees, a childcare taster session for up to five days, the cost of securing your child’s place over the summer holidays and taking your child to their childcare provider.

    You must choose your childcare provider before you make a Care to Learn application. You are welcome to contact our Childcare Advisor, Karen Crabtree, for assistance with this. Once you have done this, you can complete an application online at gov.uk.

    After you have applied, you must show a copy of your child’s birth certificate and a letter confirming you are claiming child benefit for your child to the Childcare Advisor/Karen Crabtree. Your childcare provider will only be paid once you have shown evidence of this.

    For further information about the Care to Learn scheme, visit gov.uk.

  • 19+ Help with Childcare

    If you are aged 20 years or over and meet the income eligibility for the course you are applying for, you can also apply for assistance with childcare fees during your timetabled hours of study. The maximum contribution towards childcare per student per academic year is up to £7,000. The daily cap is now £55 and the cap on a morning or afternoon session is £30.

Welfare Advice

The Welfare team offers support with issues that can make it difficult to attend college. If you are worried about debts, housing, homelessness, loss of work, claiming benefits, not having enough food, or are struggling with other costs, please get in touch and we can advise you.

Please complete the welfare referral form.