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Available bursary funds for 16 to 19 learners

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From Education and Skills Funding Agency

The 16 to 19 bursary fund has two parts, a bursary for defined vulnerable groups and a discretionary bursary.

Bursary for defined vulnerable groups

In order to be eligible for the bursary for defined vulnerable groups, a learner must have a financial need and would have to fall into one of the defined categories, which are:

  • in care or a care leaver
  • getting Income Support or Universal Credit in their own name
  • getting Disability Living Allowance (DLA) or getting Personal Independence Payment (PIP) in their own name as well as Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) or Universal Credit

If the learner does not fall into one of these categories they could still be eligible for a discretionary bursary.

Discretionary bursary

Discretionary bursaries are awards made by institutions to individual learners. They are targeted at overcoming the individual barriers to participation a learner faces. They can be for whatever amount is deemed necessary to do this.

It is up to education institutions to decide which learners will receive a bursary for vulnerable groups or a discretionary bursary, and how much they will receive. However, they should be targeted at learners who cannot stay in education without financial help for areas including:

  • transport

  • meals

  • books

  • equipment

Institutions should not make blanket or flat rate payments to all learners.

More details can be found in our 16 to 19 bursary fund guidance. 

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If you have a specific query about 16 to 19 bursary funds, please include any relevant information in your query through our enquiry form.

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