This policy sets out arrangements for how SCL will operate the 16-19 Bursary Funds during the academic year.
The 16 to 19 Bursary Fund provides financial support to help students to overcome specific barriers to participation so they can remain in education and training. SCL has received this funding to help students to meet the cost of participating in post-16 education and training. This policy is based on the Education Funding Agency’s “16-19 Bursary Fund – Guide for 2022 to 2023 academic year”.

To be eligible to receive a Bursary in the 2022/23 academic year, all young people must be aged 16, 17 or 18 on 31 August 2022, meet the residency criteria in the EFA Funding Guidance for 2022/23 Academic Year and attend suitable provision subject to inspection by a public body.

19 year olds on an EHCP or continuing from 21/22 (discretionary & free meals only) are not eligible for vulnerable bursary.

The following groups of young people are eligible to apply for 16-19 Bursary Funds:
Group One: Vulnerable Young People – up to £1,200 bursary
Group Two: Discretionary Bursary – Up to £660 bursary

Eligibility for Group One:
A bursary of up to £1,200 per annum for a full-time course (30 weeks or more) is available to students who meet the following criteria:

The defined vulnerable groups are:

The 16 to 19 Bursary Fund defines ‘in care’ as children looked after by a local authority on a voluntary basis (section 20 of the Children Act 1989) or under a care order (section 31 of the Children Act 1989) - Section 22 of the Children Act 1989 defines the term ‘looked after child’.
A ‘care leaver’ is defined as:
a young person aged 16 and 17 who was previously looked after for a period of 13 weeks consecutively (or periods amounting to 13 weeks), which began after the age of 14 and ended after the age of 16; or
a young person aged 18 or above who was looked after prior to becoming 18 for a period of 13 weeks consecutively (or periods amounting to 13 weeks), which began after the age of 14 and ended after the age of 16

A young person placed with a foster carer by the local authority, including where the foster carer is on the books of an independent fostering agency, is classed as looked after. They meet the criteria for the ‘in care’ vulnerable group where they need financial support to participate.

or young people who cease to be looked after or accommodated, including unaccompanied asylum-seeking children). Where they have a financial need.

Young people claiming Income Support or Universal Credit (in their own name).
Young people receiving Disability Living Allowance or Personal Independence Payments (in their own name) as well as Employment Support Allowance (ESA) or Universal Credit (in their own name) Appropriate evidence confirming eligibility will be required.
Institutions may decide that although a young person may be eligible for a bursary because they are in one or more of the defined vulnerable groups, they do not have any actual financial need. This might be because their financial needs are already met and/or because they have no relevant costs. Institutions can refuse a student’s application on this basis. Similarly, students should only receive the amount they actually need to participate and institutions should not automatically award students £1,200 if they do not need the full amount.

Eligibility for Group Two:

A Discretionary Bursary of up to £660 per annum* for a full-time course (30 weeks or more), or up to £440 for a course of shorter than 30 weeks is available, subject to availability of remaining funds and to all students who meet the following criteria: * (subject to committee approval)

Priority 1 – net household income* of £25,000 or less.
*Including all benefits
Awards will be made according to the following criteria:
Level of family income
Nature of the application – priority will always be given to essential curricular requests
All benefits will be considered towards household income.
The finances available within the fund
In the event of bursary funds being over-subscribed, SCL will prioritise applications on a first come first serve basis. All applications must have been received before the application close date to qualify.


All applications to access 16-19 Bursary Fund must be supported by appropriate evidence. Copies of evidence shall be retained by SCL to provide financial assurance as required. All evidence will be treated as confidential.
Acceptable evidence under Group One, Vulnerable Bursary, will be either:

Statement from the Local Authority confirming the young person’s current or previous looked after status; Along with proof of income from social worker to provide financial assessment that the student needs support, this can be included in the care letter supplied.

Universal Credit in applicants name, provide 3 Months full statements showing, name, what is received and all deductions.
Disability Living Allowance (DLA) or Personal Independence Payments (PIP) in their own right as well as Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) or UC in their own right.

If you are applying under Group Two Discretionary Bursary, then you will need to provide evidence of income / benefits entitlement stated on your application.

Examples of types of acceptable evidence (photocopies accepted) are shown in the list below.
Type of Income Evidence Required:

Annual Salary P60 for last tax year, or week 52 (last week in March) payslip or month 12 (March) payslip
Income Support Award letter * – dated within the last 3 months
Universal Credit Entitlement – Last 3 months full statements showing name, what is received and all deductions.
Job Seekers Allowance Entitlement*/Award letter – dated within the last 3 months
Employment Support Allowance Entitlement*/Award letter – dated within the last 3 months
Incapacity Benefit Entitlement*/Award letter – dated within the last 3 months
Carer’s Allowance Entitlement*/Award letter – dated within the last 3 months
Housing Benefit Entitlement*/Award letter – dated within the last 3 months
Council Tax Benefit Entitlement*/Award letter – dated within the last 3 months
Working Tax Credit Working Tax Credit Award Notice marked for current year. Must be for full year and not partial awards (FULL AWARD NOTICE)
Child Tax Credit Working Tax Credit Award Notice marked for current year. Must be for full year and not partial awards (FULL AWARD NOTICE)
Disability Living Allowance* or Personal Independence Payments* Entitlement / Award letter – dated within the last 3 months
Any other income Relevant paperwork, e.g., evidence of income from self-employment (Self-Assessment Tax Calculation SA302), etc.
*In line with meeting the net household income criteria
The student must inform SCL immediately of any changes to status, otherwise money may have to be paid back.

PLEASE NOTE: Passing the eligibility threshold in Group Two does not guarantee funding. The individual circumstances of all applicants, the funding available and the nature of the funding request will all be deemed relevant, differentiating factors, as will the overall availability of funding.


SCL will support learners who meet eligibility and Qualifying Conditions with travel costs based upon the criteria below for attendance at for all elements of programmes including work placements:

0 – 3 miles – no support. It is considered that this distance is commutable on foot or on cycle.
3+ miles up to £15 per day travel cost covered*.
*Dependant on timetabled on site days. If cost of travel ticket is less than above, the actual ticket amount will be awarded.
These amounts are subject to the overall bursary award values detailed above for Group One and Two amounts with the lower of the two amounts being payable.
These guidelines may be amended on a discretionary basis to support learners with mobility issues or with disabilities.
Travel costs will be supported through the purchase of appropriate travel tickets. Where this is not possible and where cash re-imbursement is required, the learner will need to provide clear evidence of the cost of travel is support of claims.
Where a learner is claiming mileage cost for use of their own vehicle in support of travel, where accepted this will be re-imbursed at a rate of 20p per mile
Due to the peripatetic nature of SCL Examination centres, Travel expenses for examinations will automatically be awarded to any student that qualifies for a bursary along with all other learners requiring support to travel.


Applications for a Bursary must be made using the correct application form and should be submitted in full by as soon as is practicable. Bursary awards will be made on a first come first served basis for all courses, learners are therefore encouraged to complete their applications as a matter of urgency. The application must be signed by both student & parent.
In most cases applications for non-travel items will be processed within two weeks and applicants will be informed in writing of the decision.

Subject to meeting the condition requirements as detailed below, any payments will be made by BACS to a bank account in the name of the young person (only) on a monthly basis. The young person must have a valid bank account in their name unless there are exceptional reasons.

Timing of payments will be at SCLs discretion.

All applications must be submitted by 5pm on Monday 17th October to ensure the first payment is made by the end of October. In the event there is any allocation left after the initial application period, we will re-open the applications on Monday 9th January and close on Monday 13th March. Please note that any applications made outside of these dates will not be processed.
All young people who wish to apply for the bursary must meet the following conditions:
Attendance: on or above SCLs target of overall 80% unless there is a valid reason why this level of attendance cannot be achieved. All young people must endeavour to meet punctuality and attendance requirements. Learners must present to their tutors mitigating evidence and/or explanation to maintain their bursary payments if attendance falls below these thresholds.
All students must adhere to the terms of our Learning Agreements
IAs & diagnostics must be fully completed before payments will be made.
If the young person does not meet these conditions, SCL reserves the right to withdraw or suspend Bursary payments.
In the event of a learner being overpaid in any capacity, SCL reserve the right to cease payments or request amount to be paid back.


Learners may apply for support towards term time meals if the learner is in receipt of or have a parent/guardian who is in receipt of one of the following:
Income Support
Income-based Jobseekers Allowance
Income-related Employment and Support Allowance (ESA)
Support under part VI of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999
The Guarantee element of State Pension Credit
Child Tax Credit (provided they are not entitled to Working Tax Credit and have an annual gross income of no more than £16,190, as assessed by Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC))
Universal Credit with net earnings not exceeding the equivalent of £7,400 pa (after tax and not including any benefits you get)
Eligible learners are entitled to receive a free meal or free meal allowance at the equivalent of £5 for one meal for each day of attendance on programme*.
*this is subject to timetabled days for education.


Learners facing financial hardship due to exceptional reasons and/or their circumstances changing, and / or in need of assistance with course related costs are invited to apply. This is a means tested bursary so applications should be submitted with evidence of income (from the list above).

SCL’s qualifying condition requirements above also apply. Items to be funded through cash and/or “in kind” payments may include:
Basic stationery
Books & materials
Specialist Subject Material
Emergency Accommodation and meals
Course fees, exam resits
UCAS fee, travel to Open Days and/or interview costs
Course trips
Kit (up to £250 per student)
Laptops (up to £300 per student)
Other justified costs


Except in emergencies or other unforeseen circumstances, students can normally apply up to three times a year to the Hardship Fund. To receive an award, applicants must have submitted a completed form accompanied by the required evidence of income by the Friday before the half term holiday of the relevant term.
The hardship element of the fund will be distributed at the discretion of SCL as a full payment, payment “in kind”, contribution towards a cost or a “loan” that is later repayable to the SCL. Purchases made under the Bursary remain the property of SCL Education and Training Limited and wherever practicable, all equipment purchased under the Hardship Fund must be returned to SCL for future use.

All emergency payments must be repaid once alternative support is in place.
Books, trips, and visits can be expensive in post-16 so we encourage students to apply for funding, should they meet the criteria. In all relevant cases quotes and/or original receipts must be provided prior to receipt of payment.
For non-travel related claims, where possible, funds will be used to directly procure the agreed service on behalf of the student. For awards such as childcare, clothing and equipment. In certain circumstances, students may be required to purchase kit in support of their programme. If a student has applied for discretionary travel bursary and their eligibility has been accepted SCL may, where the hardship fund allows, provide for reimbursement of club kit costs. This will only be possible with proof of purchase showing items purchased and total expenditure and will always be subject to bursary funds being available on a first come first serve basis.
Where expenditure is to be re-imbursed as cash, payments will be made by BACS to the student (or parent, where parent bank account details have been given).


Decisions about bursaries and Hardship Fund will be made by the Bursary committee:
Curriculum Managers will make the decision on attitude to learning; attendance; behaviour and completion of coursework.
The Administration team will make the financial eligibility decision


All students have a right to appeal against any decision made in respect of a bursary awarded or not awarded, or against bursary payments being ceased for not meeting attendance or behaviour expectations.
Appeals must be made in writing and submitted within two weeks of the decision
The final decision on appeal is taken by a panel including the Group Operations Director and the Group Finance Director. At no point in the process will the circumstances of other Bursary receipts be discussed for reasons of confidentiality.
When drafting your appeal please include as much information as possible:
Email Subject: Bursary Appeal
Reason for appeal
Justification of appeal with appropriate/required evidence ot support justification.


Allocation is only in respect of the Discretionary Bursary/Free Meals and Hardship element of the scheme. SCL must apply for the Vulnerable Young People Bursary element via a Funding Claim form to the SBSS once eligible young people are identified. The Student Bursary Support Service, part of the Education Funding Agency, will be then issuing funding directly to the SCL.
Secure records will be kept of all awards, receipts, and payments for audit purposes for a period of six years in accordance with statutory financial regulations.

An annual report on the number of awards made and the total value will be provided by the Head of Finance to the Bursary Committee.

This policy was approved by the Bursary Committee in March 2023 and is subject to an annual review.