Bishop Stopford’s School 16-19 Discretionary Bursary Fund
What is the 16 to 19 Bursary Fund?
The Fund is a limited amount of money made available from the government through its funding body, the Education Funding Agency to provide assistance to students whose access to, or completion of education is inhibited by financial constraints or barriers.
A discretionary bursary is made by Bishop Stopford’s School to students studying within the sixth form who meet the Discretionary Bursary criteria. Bursary awards are targeted towards those young people who face the greatest financial barriers to participation. The level of the award will be decided by the Bishop Stopford’s School Bursary Committee and will vary dependent upon individual circumstances. The method of distribution will vary dependant on the needs and circumstances of each individual student. To be eligible to receive a 16-19 bursary in the academic year 2018-19, applicants must:
- Be aged over 16 and under 19 as at the 31st August 2018
- Satisfy the government’s residency criteria
Who is eligible to apply for the 16-19 Discretionary Bursary?
A discretionary bursary is available to Bishop Stopford’s students not eligible for the full Vulnerable Bursary who reside in a household whose parents/guardians are in receipt of any of the following:
- Universal Credit
- Income Support
- Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance
- Income-related Employment and Support Allowance
- Support under Part VI of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999
- The guaranteed element of State Pension Credit
- Child Tax Credit, provided they are not entitled to Working Tax Credit and have an annual income (as assessed by HM Revenue & Customs) that does not exceed £16,190
- Working Tax Credit ‘run-on’ – the payment someone may receive for a further four weeks after they stop qualifying for Working Tax Credit
- Students who reside in a household which has a taxable income of less than £20,817 for the tax year previous (evidenced through production of P60, Working Tax Credit Award Certificate) may also apply for the Discretionary Bursary.
Under exceptional circumstances students who are not automatically eligible for an award can also apply for help with one off course related expenses (proof of income or hardship will be asked for). Applications for additional help will be considered on an individual basis and is dependent upon available funds. Applications for additional help should be made in writing to the Bursary Committee via the sixth form supervisor
Assessment of applications and allocation of 16-19 Bursary funding
Students should complete the bursary application form and hand it along with the relevant proof of entitlement to the Sixth Form Supervisor by Friday 30th November.
Students who become eligible during the course of the academic year should contact the Sixth Form Supervisor so that they can make an application for funding based on their new circumstances.
The Sixth Form Bursary Fund Committee (AHT – Sixth Form, School Business Manager, Sixth Form Supervisor) will meet to consider applications. The Sixth Form Bursary Fund Committee will meet once a half term to consider and review applications following changes in circumstances and request for additional help.
It is important to note that the available fund is extremely limited. The school is under no obligation to make payments and failure to comply with the terms of the Attendance Policy and/or the Sixth Form Contract will result in further funding not being available.
Students who are deemed eligible should be aware that to continue to receive their full allocation of bursary/funding throughout the year:
They must maintain a minimum of 95% attendance.
There must be no unauthorised absences during the school day or persistent lateness.
They must maintain acceptable levels of behaviour, as outlined in the Sixth Form Agreement.
Students will only receive bursary funding if they have secured a minimum of 95% attendance at School including morning and afternoon registration. The only exceptions to this rule include the following:
- Medical Procedure or illness supported by a Doctor’s Certificate, Hospital letter or letter from parents/carer. Hospital Appointment (a hospital documentation or note from parent in planner).
- University Interview (if an authorised absence request has been received).
- University Open Day (if an authorised absence request has been received).
- School Trip Excursion.
- Official School Closure i.e. snow day.
- Official School Study Leave.
Students will NOT receive bursary funding if they use any of the following as verification of absence:
- Hair appointment
- Dentist appointment
- Any other form of self-certification
- School exclusion
- Family holidays
- Lateness to school affecting lesson attendance
There may be occasions when cases have to be looked at on an individual basis and at the discretion of the Bursary Fund Committee whose decision will be final. An example of these could include any of the following, although this list is not in- depth:
Theory and Practical Driving Test.
Family/close friend’s funeral.
Sports trials/training/county selections.
Students who fail to meet the above criteria will be required to meet with the AHT responsible for Sixth form and may have further bursary payments suspended.
Distribution of Awards
Bishop Stopford’s School will determine the assessment criteria for eligibility for discretionary bursaries, the level of discretionary award allocated and the frequency of payments for all awards. The level of award allocated will be dependent on the needs of an individual student as outlined in their application.
For discretionary bursaries Bishop Stopford’s School will either purchase items on behalf of the student or payments will be made by cheque in the students name upon receiving receipts for any school equipment purchased.
Discretionary Bursaries may be allocated in any of the following ways, depending upon needs and circumstances:
- Free/subsidised meals in the school canteen;
- Help with transport costs;
- Help with kit and equipment, including text books and revision guides;
- Help with Educational visits
- Clothing to meet the Sixth Form Dress Code
- Cost of attending University Open Day
- Payments linked to half termly attendance;
- Or a combination of the above
Bishop Stopford’s School will need to reserve 20% of the 16-19 Bursary amount provided. This is to accommodate changes in circumstance and ensure that requests for funding from students following such changes can be accommodated. Funds remaining at the close of the summer term will be ring fenced and used for the purchase of central resources or the provision of services for the benefit of students across the sixth form.
Notification of qualification for the Bursary
Students will receive a letter confirming receipt of their application to the ‘16-19 Bursary Fund’ along with the support allocation awarded by the Bursary Fund Committee and, if appropriate, a payment scheme.
Any student wishing to appeal against the Support Level allocated should do so in writing within 2 weeks of receiving their letter of Support Allocation. Appeals should be made to the Sixth Form Supervisor.