Foundation Diploma and financing rent/food...

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Student Money Saving
6 replies 2K views
Wibble68Wibble68 Forumite
4 Posts
edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Student Money Saving
Hi all,

A relative wants to do a foundation diploma in media and arts (they will be 18).

This seems to come under a grey area of likely being Higher Education (so probably not able to get Housing Benefit, possibly can if its only Further Education I think), but also not being able to get a Student Loan.

This seems strange, that there is a hole where you can't get any support at all to study.

Is anyone aware of this situation and any routes to get some help with financing it (there aren't tuition feeds, its more paying for rent and food), or any other advice ?

Thanks.

Replies

  • agrinnallagrinnall
    23.3K Posts
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    Part time job? Parental support? Defer and work for a year to save up enough to pay for the following year studying?
  • You've mentioned higher education but a foundation diploma (I believe) is similar to a BTEC and therefore only further education. If this is the case then your relative's parents are still able to claim child benefit and child tax credits (if applicable) to help towards living costs. If your 18 year old relative is financially independent from their parents then they would likely be entitled to some kind of benefit such as housing benefit and possibly income support depending on their circumstances. How have they supported themselves thus far? Typically speaking, an 18 year old in further education is financially dependent on their parents and aren't expected to do much more than when they were still in compulsory education (except they may find it easier to gain part time employment to help their parents etc).

    If you meant a foundation degree, this is certainly higher education and all the typical student financing applies (loans and grants possibly some benefits under certain circumstances). This is typically not enough to cover all living costs so many students need to subsidise this with part time work or family contributions if the family are lucky enough to have any spare money.

    I hope that helps.
    Apologies for any typos, my phone can't handle the forums.
  • FeyfangirlFeyfangirl Forumite
    431 Posts
    Tenth Anniversary
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    If it is a foundation degree, then all higher education loans and grants should apply, (level 4 and above) :) if however it is indeed a further education foundation diploma, there is usually bursaries from the college you can get (see their financial help page on their website, their usually is one) and see what they offer :)
    "No one can change the past. The only thing we can do is strive to make up for our mistakes. Why must we make up for our mistakes, you ask? Because in so doing...we can find the way back to our path. And once we've found our path we can move on from our past mistakes toward a brighter future"

    Phoenix Wright in Ace Attorney Rise from the Ashes
  • Wibble68Wibble68 Forumite
    4 Posts
    Thanks for the replies.

    It is a foundation diploma (1 year, which they would then start a degree at the end of it assuming they passed).

    So far they're doing A levels from home, but they would be moving away for this foundation diploma (which is why it would be such a large change in finance, without access to a loan).
  • Wibble68 wrote: »
    Thanks for the replies.

    It is a foundation diploma (1 year, which they would then start a degree at the end of it assuming they passed).

    So far they're doing A levels from home, but they would be moving away for this foundation diploma (which is why it would be such a large change in finance, without access to a loan).

    Oh okay, that makes sense now. As previously mentioned, a large number of students will still be living with and/or financially dependent on parents but if the new place of learning usually has students who leave home to study there then they may have grants available which your relative will need to ask them about. I'm not certain, but they may be entitled to the shared rate of housing allowance but probably nothing else as it doesn't sound like there are any 'special circumstances' (eg. has a child dependent or left local authority care). Depending on how many hours they're spending in class, it may be wise to get a job as this could open up tax credits (depending on hours and wage - I have a friend who is a full time university student and still manages to work 40 hour weeks on top of being a mother and a wife, so it is possible). They probably can't claim JSA as they need to be completely available for work and possibly obliged to take on work regardless of learning if they were claiming.

    If your relative declares themselves financially independent (by claiming any benefits in their own right) then their parents can no longer claim child benefit or child tax credits (can be up to about £80 per week) so depending on how far the new place of learning is, it might be better to stay at home and commute.

    No easy way I'm afraid as we don't expect young people to be financially independent until they're at university (and/or have a child dependent). Good luck though.
    Apologies for any typos, my phone can't handle the forums.
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