If you are 19 years old or over and a part-time learner, you may be able to get funding so that you don't have to pay a tuition fee or an exam fee for your course.
Fees charged for all courses are shown on the website, however, you do not have to pay the tuition fee, exam fee or fee supplement (conditions apply) if you are studying one of the following:
- An Entry Level or Level 1 qualification and have not already attained a full Level 2 qualification and need this as an additional step in order to progress to a full Level 2 and are aged 19 to 23. Exclusions apply.
- Your first full Level 2 qualification (a Level 2 qualification which is part of the Legal Entitlement list as confirmed by the Education & Skills Funding Agency (ESFA)), and are aged 19 to 23.*
- Your first full Level 3 qualification (a Level 3 qualification which is part of the Legal Entitlement list as confirmed by the ESFA), and are aged 19 to 23.**
- GCSE English or Maths and have not attained GCSE at grade C/4 or above in the relevant subject.
- An Adult Basic Skill (including Functional Skills in English or Maths), excluding English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) and have not attained GCSE at grade C/4 or above in the relevant subject. You can study an ESOL course for free if you are in receipt of a benefit listed below, or if you qualify for low wage flexibility as detailed below.
- You are an employed/self-employed learner who earns less than £20,319 annual gross salary and are unable to pay towards the cost of your fees and, subject to prior attainment, may be eligible to be fully funded for an Entry, Level 1 or 2 course regardless of the number of hours you work. Please note, this amount is subject to change based on guidance from the ESFA.
- A course that is eligible for National Skills Fund where you have not already achieved a full Level 3 qualification
If you are in receipt of a benefit listed below, meet the definition of unemployed as stated in the ESFA funding rules and the course level is up to and including Level 2, you can be 19+ to receive the remission (conditions and exclusions apply). There are currently funding limitations for those aged 19-23 who do not hold a full Level 2 qualification enrolling on provision at Level 2 which is not classed as a full Level 2 (please enquire for further details).
- Job Seekers Allowance (JSA), including National Insurance credits only, including the unemployed partner where the claim is joint.
- Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) including the unemployed partner where the claim is joint.
- Universal Credit where take-home pay from employment (disregarding benefits) is less than £617 from 1 April 2023 (individual claims) or £988 from 1 April 2023 (household claims)***
- State benefits including Income Support, Housing/Council Tax Benefit/Support, Working Tax Credit with a household income of less than £16,190, Pension Guarantee Credit, Disability Living Allowance, Incapacity Benefit, Personal Independence Payment (PIP), Universal Credit (other than the groups listed above) and Carers Allowance. Remission is only available to those who, including the unemployed partner where the claim is joint, as well as receiving one of the benefits listed also meets the following criteria:
- Take-home pay (disregarding benefits) is less than £617 a month from 1 April (individual claims) or £988 a month from 1 April (household claims)***, and;
- Want to be employed, or progress into more sustainable employment, if take-home pay (disregarding benefits) is less than £617 a month from 1 April (individual claims) or £988 a month from 1 April (household claims)*** and the learning is directly relevant to their employment prospects and the local labour market needs.
- You will be required to sign a self-declaration.
If you are struggling to pay your fees or have any other questions, please contact the Advice and Guidance Centre.
* For example, a full Level 2 qualification would be five GCSEs of at least a grade C/4 or an NVQ at Level 2.
** For example, a full Level 3 qualification would be an NVQ at Level 3, National Diploma or two A Levels.
**This is subject to change