- How do I apply?Firstly, it is important to establish that you are eligible, please see the priority groups listed within our financial support pages.
We would then encourage learners who may be eligible for support to apply as soon as possible as all applications will be dealt with on a first come, first served basis.
You should complete, sign and submit an application form online. You should ensure that all sections are completed in full and the application is submitted with all necessary relevant evidence. Photographs or electronic scanned copies of evidence are to also be submitted online.
Incomplete applications will either be returned to you or any missing information will be requested via email. Failure to provide the correct supporting evidence will cause a delay in the processing of the application.
Once all of the funding has been allocated, you will be added to a waiting list. In the event that more funds are made available to the College, we will contact you.
- Do I need to provide anything with my application?
Yes, you should hand in your completed application form with all the required supporting evidence of income to Learner Services at either the Burton Town Centre Campus or the Construction Academy in Swadlincote.
The College will accept the following documents as evidence of receipt of benefits or income from employment:
- Tax Credit Award Notice or Tax Credit Review
- Benefits Agency letter, or confirmation from the Job Centre, setting out eligibility to means tested benefits such as:
- Income Support
- Income-related Employment Support Allowance (ESA)
- Income-based Job Seekers Allowance
- Housing Benefit
- Council Tax Benefit
Note - such evidence should be dated within 3 calendar months of the date of application.
- Universal Credit award statement for the three most recent assessment periods showing that their earnings in that period or electronic screenshots of UC application/entitlement
- Department of Work and Pensions (DWP) letter setting out the guarantee element of State Pension
- Credit for which members of the household maybe entitled. Such evidence should be dated 12 calendar months of the date of application.
- P60 End of Year Certificate for the preceding tax year plus the last 3 consecutive months pay slips or a formal written statement of earnings from an employer for any member of the family, aged 18 or over, who is presently in paid employment.
- SA302 Self-Assessment Tax Calculation or a copy of Annual Accounts with an accompanying letter from an Accountant confirming income during the preceding tax year for any member of the family aged 18 years or over, who is presently self-employed.
Evidence should be dated within three months of the support application date. Evidence which exceeds this time limit maybe accepted under exceptional circumstances, subject to the provision of supporting evidence that the recipient remains in receipt of the payments. This may be in the form of a bank statement or confirmation letter from the Benefits Agency.
Additional evidence of income may be requested for applications made under exceptional circumstances.
The College will not accept the following documents as evidence of receipt of benefits or income from employment:
- Bank statements
- Provisional Tax Credit Award Notices
- Benefits Agency letter setting out eligibility to non-means tested benefits such as:
- Attendance Allowance
- Bereavement Allowance
- Carers Allowance
- Child Benefit
- Constant Attendance Allowance
- Disability Living Allowance (DLA)
- Guardian Allowance
- Incapacity Benefit
- Industrial Injuries Disablement benefit
- Invalidity benefit
- Jobseekers Allowance (NI based)
- Job Grant
- Local Housing Allowance
- Personal Independence Payments (PIP)
- Training Premium
- Travel to Interview Scheme
- War Widows/Widowers Pension
- Widowed Parent’s Allowance
- Widow’s Pension
- If I submit an application am I guaranteed funding?
No. Eligibility does not guarantee support as funds are limited and all awards are made on an individual needs basis.
- What happens if my application is successful?
Awards are made on a strictly first come first served basis and are subject to the availability of funds.
If your application is successful you will receive an Award Notification to your College email or via SMS text message. This will confirm the support awarded to you.
We aim to assess applications and make awards within 10- 15 working days from the date of application acceptance during peak enrolment (August, September and October) thereafter within 3-5 working days from the date of application acceptance.
* The date of ‘Application Acceptance’ is the point in time at which the application has been received and is complete (no further queries). This differs from the ‘Application Received’ date which is the date the application was received by the Financial Support Team.
- What happens if my application is unsuccessful?
If your application was unsuccessful, due to you not meeting the eligibility requirements, a notification will be sent to your College email.
- How will I get paid?
Where practicable, the College will purchase and provide items to you or make payment in kind. Where payment to you is necessary or unavoidable these will be made by BACS directly in to your bank account typically on a Monday, except where the Monday falls as a bank holiday, and then it will be the next banking day thereafter.
You must have your own bank account to receive payments as payments cannot be made to parents or any other third parties, except in exceptional circumstances where there are other extenuating reasons which prevent a direct payment being made to the learner.
- I don’t meet the eligibility criteria but I still need help?
Don’t worry, if you have a genuine financial need but do not meet the eligibility criteria, you may still apply for support. You will be required to write and submit a short statement detailing your exceptional circumstances and provide any appropriate supporting evidence. Awards under exceptional circumstances are made on a case by case basis at the discretion of the Learner Services Team Leader, and do not set a precedent for other awards. Speak to a member of our Financial Support Team for further information.
- When will I not receive support?
You will not receive support if you:
- Apply after the application deadline (subject to availability of funds)
- Have outstanding debts to the College
- Live in a household where the income is above the threshold set
- Already receive financial assistance through alternative funds, i.e. New Deal, Charitable Trusts etc.
- Are studying on a Work-Based Learning Scheme (Waged-Apprenticeship)
- Are in prison or a young offender’s institution or have been released on temporary licence (ROTL), for example on day release
- Are enrolled on a Higher Education (HE) course
- Are enrolled on a recreational or community learning course
- Have not been ‘ordinarily’ resident in the UK, EU or EEA continuously for the last 3 years before the start of the course and do not have ‘settled status’ which means Indefinite Leave to Enter or Remain (ILE/ILR)
- Have been refused asylum with no support granted under Section IV of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1998
- Are there any conditions on the funding I am awarded?
Yes. All funding is dependent on you maintaining and average attendance rate of at least 75% and adhering to the College’s learner policies and Respect Agreement.
In the event that your average attendance rate falls below 75%, we would expect strategies for improving your attendance to be discussed and agreed with your Learner Mentor, and goals to improve attendance set. Should you fail to achieve any agreed goals within the specified time period, we reserve the right to suspend any further support due to you until which time the goals have been met and your attendance level improves to an acceptable level.
We reserve the right to suspend your support payments and adjust your award accordingly to reflect your total period of absence and remove your entitlement to any outstanding accumulated payments.
We also reserve the right to suspend or cancel your support, should you:
- Fail to attend College for 4 consecutive weeks
- Fail to keep up to date with course work
- Be subject to disciplinary action including suspension
- Withdraw or be withdrawn from College
Any suspended payments will be accumulated and in the event of a residual balance at the end of the academic year, this will be written off.
- What happens if I withdraw or I am withdrawn early from my course?
If you withdraw or are withdrawn from your course, your support will be stopped immediately and you may have to pay back all or some of the monies paid. You will also be liable for any outstanding debts to the College or third parties.
Any kit, uniform and/or equipment provided should be returned to your learner mentor within 5 to 10 working days of your last date of attendance.
- Where can I find the Financial Support Guidelines?
To view the College's Learner Bursaries and Financial Support Policy, download it from our Student Policies page.
- What do I do if I am unhappy with the outcome of my application?
You have the right to appeal if:
- You believe your application has been assessed incorrectly
- You are not happy with the level of support awarded
- You were found to be not eligible for an award
Your appeal should be made in writing, by completing the Financial Support Appeals Form which is available from Learner Services or online, within 10 working days of receiving either and Award Notification or a letter notifying you that you are not eligible for support. Please address your appeal to:
Financial Support Appeals
Learner Services Team Leader
Learner Voice, Services & Reputation
Burton and South Derbyshire College
The Learner Services Team Leader will consider your appeal and either confirm or amend the initial decision. You will then be advised of the outcome and any action to be taken in writing within 10 working days. The decision of the Learner Services Team Leader will be final.