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16-19 Bursary

A key priority of the Government is to close the gap in attainment between those from poorer and more affluent backgrounds, and to ensure every young person participates in and benefits from a place in 16 -19 education and training.

The 16-19 Bursary is a fund provided by the Government, to provide bursaries to disadvantaged learners in Years 12 to 14.  These bursaries provide financial support to help students overcome the specific financial barriers to participation they face so they can remain in education.


To be eligible for the fund, learners must:

  • be at least 16 and under 19 on 31 August 2023
  • Students must meet the residency criteria in ESFA funding regulations for post-16 provision
  • study at a publicly funded school or college, or be on an unpaid training course

The fund is into two types of bursary, vulnerable and discretionary.

Vulnerable Bursary

The criteria for a vulnerable bursary is set by the Government. A bursary of up to £1200 a year is available for any young people in the following defined vulnerable groups

  • in care
  • a care leaver aged 16 and 17 who was previously looked after for a period of 13 weeks consecutively (or periods amounting to 13 weeks), which began after the age of 14 and ended after the age of 16
  • a care leaver aged 18 or above who was looked after prior to becoming 18 for a period of 13 weeks consecutively (or periods amounting to 13 weeks), which began after the age of 14 and ended after the age of 16
  • getting Income Support or Universal Credit because they’re financially supporting themselves
  • getting Disability Living Allowance (DLA) in their own name and either Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) or Universal Credit
  • getting Personal Independence Payment (PIP) in their own name and either ESA or Universal Credit
Discretionary Bursary

Schools and colleges are provided with a limited fund for discretionary bursaries. They set their own criteria for receiving a discretionary bursary, and look at individual circumstances, usually including family income.

Woodlands Meed criteria is targeted towards those facing a financial barrier to participation and achievement.

Priority for funding is as follows:-

  • previously entitled to Free School Meals or pupil premium in years 10 or 11
  • household income below £30,000 per year - evidence will be required to support this
  • in receipt of income based benefits - evidence will be required to support this

We will consider any student that due to exceptional circumstances is experiencing genuine financial hardship for the discretionary bursary.

How to apply

In order to receive either a vulnerable or discretionary bursary, learners or their parent / carer will need to complete an application form and return it to the college, providing evidence of eligibility as requested.

The application will then be considered by the Bursary Panel which consists of Justina Pughe-Morgan, Business Support Manager and Gillian Barton, Deputy Head.

Applicants will be notified whether they have been successful in their application, with reasons provided if they have not.

If the application is unsuccessful there is a right to appeal against the decision. This should be done in writing, directed to Adam Rowland, Headteacher. The appeal should clearly state why the application should be reconsidered.

Examples of how the bursary can be used
  • To cover the cost of meals
  • To assist with the cost of transport
  • To cover the cost of specialist uniform and clothing required as part of a course 
  • To cover the cost of trips and visits
  • To assist with any other financial cost the student incurs as part of their attendance at Woodlands Meed 

Any items purchased through the bursary remain the property of the school and must be retuned at the end of the study period. 

How payments will be made

Schools and college are required to avoid making payments directly to families or learners wherever possible. This means that we try to make payments and purchases directly on behalf of students, for example adding money to their school meals account, and paying transport costs directly to the transport providers.