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Funding for student parents

If you are a single parent or part of a couple who are both full time students then there may be some additional funding sources that you can access to help you with the costs of caring for your dependants (please note that these funding sources are mainly available to UK or EU nationals or those who have settled status in the UK).  Our advice team in The Hub Advice Zone are available to help you with a wide range of issues such as benefit applications or housing issues.  

Access To Learning Fund

Funding may be available to you from the Access to Learning Fund if you can demonstrate that you meet basic eligibility criteria.  The Access to Learning Fund is administrated by The Hub and students with children are given priority and encouraged to apply to the Fund for assistance with costs not already covered by statutory support.

Please follow the link to the Access to Learning Fund for more detailed information.

Grants available through Student Finance England

Maintenance Grant – up to £2,984

This is a grant to you pay your living costs and it is assessed entirely on your household income.  This type of funding doe not need to be repaid. You cannot receive the Maintenance Grant and the Special Support Grant.  Remember, any amount of Maintenance Grant you receive will be used to substitute for part of your loan.

Special Support Grant – up to £2,984

This grant is to help pay for living costs and is available to students who have an underlying benefit entitlement. Most full time student students do not qualify to apply for social security benefits but there are some special groups who can apply (for example students who are single parents or those in receipt of DSA.)   ou cannot receive both the Maintenance Grant and the Special Support Grant and it is important that you make sure you apply for the right one as it can affect your benefit entitlement and the total amount of funding you get. Feel free to contact us at the Advice Zone at The Hub on 0121 204 4007 if you are not sure which grant to apply for. The Special Support Grant is assessed according to your household income but is not used to subsidise your student loan. The Special Support Grant will be paid into your bank account at the start of each term. This type of funding does not have to be repaid. 

Parents Learning Allowance – up to £1,508

This grant is assessed on your household income. You do not to complete a separate application form for this grant and it can be assessed as part of your main funding application. The Parents’ Living Allowance will be paid into your bank account at the start of each term. This type of funding does not have to be repaid.

Adult Dependants Grant – up to £2,642

There is an additional grant called the Adult Dependants’ Grant available for students who have an adult who is financially dependent upon them.  An adult dependant could be a partner with a low income who relies upon you financially but cannot be a son or daughter who is now and adult but still lives at home.  The Adult Dependants’ Grant is assessed based on your household income.  The Adult Dependants’ Grant will be paid into your bank account at the start of each term. This type of funding does not have to be repaid.  You do not have to apply separately f or this grant and it can be assessed as part of your main funding application. 

Childcare Grant- up to 70% of childcare costs

You can apply for a grant to help you with up to 85% of your childcare costs as long as you are using approved or registered childcare   The maximum amount that can be paid is £148.75 per week for one child and £255 per week for two or more children. You will need to complete a separate application form called the CCG1 for 2012/13 to apply for this grant. You can pick up a copy of the formfrom the Advice Zone at The Hub. The Childcare Grant will be paid into your bank account at the start of each term.  This type of funding does not have to be repaid.

Further advice and support regarding registered childcare services in Birmingham.

If you live outside of Birmingham, view a list of Local Authorities.

Aston University Nursery

Balancing study commitments with your day-to-day life can be difficult.  However, knowing your child is in a safe environment close to the university may make the transition into Higher Education that bit easier.

Aston University Nursery is an Ofsted registered provider of nursery care for children aged 6 weeks to 5 years. Support over the vacation periods for children aged 4 ½ to 11 yrs old is also provided. 

The Aston University Nursery Ofsted registration number is: EY337194

Benefits and Tax Credits


Child Benefit

You may be able to claim Child Benefit for children that you have a financial responsibility for.  The amount of money you could receive will depend on your circumstances (such as how many children you have).  You can apply for Child Benefit from HMRC.  

Tax Credits 

If you are a singe parent or have a low household income then you may be able to claim Tax Credits.  The amount you can receive will depend on your circumstances and the mount of income you have. 


Find out if you're entitled to tax credits

Calculate how much you may be entitled to in tax credits

Income Support

If you are a lone parent then you may be able to claim Income Support but it will depend on circumstances such as the age of your youngest child.  If you youngest child is aged 5 or over then you may not qualify to apply for Income Support (although you may be able to claim JSA instead).  Part of your student income will be taken into account in the calculation for Income Support so you may not be able to receive this benefit during the academic year.  However, your student income should be disregarded in full during July and August so you may be able to receive Income Support during these 2 summer vacation months.  

Jobseeker's allowance (JSA)

If you are a lone parent and you youngest child is aged 5 or over or you are part of a couple where you are both full time students, then you may be able to claim JSA.   Part of your student income will be taken into account in the calculation for JSA so you may not be able to receive this benefit during the academic year.  However, your student income should be disregarded in full during July and August so you may be able to receive JSA during these 2 summer vacation months.  You will also need to show that you are ready for work and actively seeking employment.  

Housing Benefit

If you are a lone parent or you are part of a couple where you are both full time students, then you may also be able to claim Housing Benefit.  You will need to be living in eligible accommodation.   Part of your student income will be taken into account in the calculation for Housing Benefit.  This may mean that you cannot receive Housing Benefit during the academic year or that you will only be granted reduced Housing benefit and will need to pay some money towards your housing costs yourself.  However, your student income should be disregarded in full during July and August so you may be able to receive full Housing Benefit during these 2 summer vacation months.  

Please do not hesitate to contact us at The Hub Advice Zone is you have any further queries or need help applying for any of these funding sources.  

Last checked 07/11/2012 GB


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