Bursaries and finance for study
16 to 19 year olds
People aged 16 to 19 years old do not have to pay any fees for full-time further-education courses, but there may be some costs (for example, for books, equipment or trips). Listed below are the main sources of funding students can apply to for help with these costs.
Bursaries and Discretionary Funds
The Bursary Fund for 16-19 year olds in education is administered by each learning organisation. They will supply details of how to apply for a bursary or other help from them such as equipment or special clothing needed for the course. Visit the GOV.UK website for more information about 16-19 Bursaries. If your teenager is struggling financially whilst at sixth form or college they can apply for help from the Discretionary Support Fund. There is a limited amount of cash available and it will go to the most needy students – ask at their school or college for details.
Funding for childcare
Students under 20 who are young parents can apply for funding to cover the cost of childcare while they go to college. Visit GOV.UK for more information on Care to Learn.
Child Benefit and Tax Credits
Whilst your teenager is in full-time education (except higher education) you can continue to claim Child Benefit and Child Tax Credits until they turn 20. Get more information on Child Benefit and Child Tax Credit on the GOV.UK website.
Help with transport costs
Your teenager may be able to get help to pay for transport to their college or sixth form. Find out more on our FE/6th form travel page. If they are on another type of programme they should speak to their learning provider to find out whether they can offer help with public transport costs.
While your teenager is at university they will need to cover two main costs, tution fees and living costs. There is financial help available for both these costs. The information below gives an idea of how much support your teenager is entitled to, for a more comprehensive guide to student finance see our young people's website.
Your teenager will not have to pay any money for fees upfront, or while they are studying. Instead, they will be able to put off paying their fees by taking out a tuition fee loan. They will start repaying this loan after they leave higher education and are earning more than £21,000 a year. Universities' fees can vary and could be up to £9,000 a year for students starting courses in subsequent years. The amount universities charge may vary between courses, as well as between universities.
Your teenager can apply for a student maintenance loan. The amount of loan they can apply for will depend on your earnings. If you have higher earnings then your teenager will be able to borrow slightly less money, as you are expected to contribute to the cost. Your teenager will begin to repay their loan once they are earning more than £21,000 a year. If their income drops below this level, they can stop paying temporarily.
Non-repayable Maintenance Grant
This is a grant to help with the costs of living and studying if your family has a low income. It does not have to be paid back. The amount your teenager receives depends upon the income of your family.
Non-repayable HE bursaries
If your teenager qualifies for the full higher-education grant, it is likely that your teenager will qualify for extra financial help from most universities in the form of a bursary. Find out more on GOV.UK.
Applying for financial help
To apply for loans and grants, your teenager will need to fill in an online student finance form. Part-time students have to apply by post. You can download a paper copy of the tuition fee application from the GOV.UK website.
Some students may qualify for benefits in special circumstances. See the GOV.UK website for more information.
Get involved and support your children with their career choices
Leicester City Council
Education, learning and grants.
Care to Learn
Help to pay for childcare costs while you learn, if you're under 20.
Skill: National Bureau for Students with Disabilities
National charity promoting opportunities for young people and adults with a disability or learning difficulty in post-16 education, training and employment.
Page last updated 19/10/12