Under the changed arrangements for supporting students who will suffer financial hardship at Sixth Form level, St Mary's will receive a fixed amount of funding to provide additional monies for some students (16-19 Bursary Fund). The amount of money allocated is determined by data that the Young People's Learning Agency (YPLA) holds about the circumstances of our College and its students.
The level of funding is significantly less than the previous Educational Maintenance Allowance (EMA) and therefore it is not possible to replicate previous levels of EMA funding either in the amount students received or the numbers receiving it.
Some Government guidance has been given to schools and colleges as to how this funding might be allocated and after taking into account this guidance we have decided upon the following policy:
We will allocate the funding to the two key groups of students identified by the Government as needing hardship funding.
The Government has directed that any student who is looked after i.e. a care leaver, in receipt of Income Support and disabled young people in receipt of both Employment Support Allowance and Disability Living Allowance will receive £1200 over the academic year (£31 per week).
Those students in receipt of Free School Meals will receive £15 per week subject to achieving excellent attendance and punctuality plus evidence of effort and commitment to lessons and coursework.
It is vital that we have an accurate picture of who is in receipt of these benefits. We will contact those students and parents whom we believe to be eligible to confirm that this is the situation. It is imperative that parents and carers claim the above benefits if they are eligible and if they want to receive an allocation from the 16-19 Bursary Fund.
If the financial circumstances of a family changes during the academic year and a student becomes eligible for Free School Meals then they should contact the College. Similarly, if a student ceases to be eligible for Free School Meals the entitlement to the weekly bursary will end.
This situation is not of our making and we have sought to act in keeping with Government guidance.
Please contact Mrs Linda Jones, Head of Sixth Form, if you have any queries.
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