If you’re aged 16-18 and a British citizen, you won’t have to pay tuition fees, but may need help with other essential costs such as travel, books, equipment and childcare. Here are some of the financial support options available:
This government bursary provides up to £1,200 towards the costs of attending college for students experiencing financial hardship. You can apply for this bursary if your household income is £25,000 or below. Payments are subject to you achieving an attendance rate of at least 90%. Find out more about the 16-18 bursary.
VYP (vulnerable young persons) bursary
You could be eligible for this bursary of up to £1,200 a year (or pro-rata for less than a year) if you are a:
- young person in care
- care leaver
- young person receiving income support
- disabled young person receiving both Employment and Support Allowance and Disability Living Allowance (or Personal Independence Payment)
Payments are subject to satisfactory attendance at the College.
Some London boroughs offer student bursaries to young people in education and training. You can find out about council bursaries by getting in touch with your local borough council.
16+ Oyster card
If you’re 16-18, studying on a Further Education programme and living in a London borough, you’re eligible for free travel on TFL bus routes. (Students not living in a London borough are eligible for half price travel on these routes.) Find out more about the 16+ Oyster card.
You may be eligible to receive additional support with travel costs from your local council if you live three or more miles away from the campus where you study.
Care to Learn scheme
If you are a young parent (aged under 20 at the start of your course) you may be eligible for the government’s Care to Learn scheme which provides up to £175 per week to help with childcare costs while you study. You can only claim this benefit if your child’s other parent is not available to provide childcare and not claiming Childcare Tax Credit. Find out more about the Care to Learn scheme.
Free school meals
You are eligible for free meals at College if you, or our parent or carer, receive benefits such as Child Tax Credits, Income Support or Job Seekers Allowance. Find out more about free school meals.
TOTUM (NUS extra) card
The TOTUM (previously NUS extra) card gives students access to over 200 exclusive discounts with a range of beauty, entertainment, eating out, music and travel brands. You can sign up for a TOTUM card, which costs £12 a year, at the NUS website.