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Here are some suggested organisations that offer expert advice on fostering.

University costs?

(10 Posts)
Mrstrumpalot Fri 20-Oct-17 18:01:18

I know that when children go off to university then their parents incomes are taken into consideration for grants/loans etc.

What happens if the child has been in a foster home?

Are the foster parents incomes taken into consideration, can the child get extra grants for having been in care or would the foster parents probably fund it anyway as a moral obligation if the child has been part of the family for years?

sparklymarion Sat 21-Oct-17 09:00:12

I believe the child gets costs covered and extra grants because it has been la.

Will the child stay with you under supported care ?

Personally I would see it as my obligation to ensure that I sent them with for instance bedding towering kitchen wear food supplies coat hangers etc all the things I sent my birth child with and to keep in touch x x

insert1usernamehere Sun 22-Oct-17 23:11:03

Care leavers are classed as being independent students, so their eligibility for student finance is based on their own income (presumably £0 / very low) and so they will receive a full tuition fee loan, full maintenance loan and usually a bursary from the university in question.

This gives an overview of the amounts a student could expect to receive from the government www.gov.uk/student-finance/new-fulltime-students

Most universities will offer guaranteed accommodation for the full course (including during the holidays, if the student wants it) and most will also offer some additional financial support e.g.
www.kent.ac.uk/finance-student/funding/IndexCareLeavers.html
documents.manchester.ac.uk/display.aspx?DocID=8259
www1.uwe.ac.uk/students/feesandfunding/fundingandscholarships/careleavers.aspx

They should also get a £2000 HE bursary from the LA

I'd expect the FC to send the student off with the essential kit they need (duvet, pots and pans, laptop etc.), either funded using the HE bursary or by the FC themselves, but beyond that there's no moral financial obligation. I'd still anticipate that the FC would be available to provide moral support at the end of a telephone and an invite to Christmas dinner though - it would be an incredibly lonely time otherwise.

Mrstrumpalot Mon 23-Oct-17 10:41:41

Thanks both. That’s really useful information.

It’s a couple of years off yet but have a long term placement who I know will be university material should they choose.
I’m glad there is help out there as with the best will in the world my fostering income wouldn’t have cut it as far as university costs are concerned.

insert1usernamehere Mon 23-Oct-17 11:27:53

My pleasure smile The upshot of it all is that care leavers who go to university often end up financially pretty well off compared to their peers, with no financial contributions necessary from the FC.

It's also worth noting that all universities have what are called Widening Participation (WP) schemes. These are schemes designed to help and encourage bright kids from socio-economic backgrounds where it's not the norm to go to university to go to to university. Care leavers very much fall into this category, and universities will almost fall over themselves to help.

WP schemes are something that you'd do with a local university, but the aim of them is to get the students into any university that is right for that child. York would be very pleased to see the student go to Leeds or Manchester Metropolitan, and utterly thrilled to see them go to Oxford, for instance; it's not a case of signing them up for a specific university at age 16.

Some of them have quite broad intakes across lots of different categories of students, e.g.
K+ at King's kplus.london/ (2 year programme)
MAP at Manchester www.manchester.ac.uk/study/undergraduate/aspiring-students/map/ (2 year programme)
UNIQ at Oxford www.uniq.ox.ac.uk/ (summer school)
Access to Leeds www.leeds.ac.uk/projectleeds/info/128005/applying/33/alternative_admissions/4 (alternative admissions)

Some are care leaver specific e.g.
Success4Life at Manchester & Manchester Metropolitan www.manchester.ac.uk/connect/teachers/students/secondary/widening-participation/care-background/
Nottingham (who also do training for FC) www.nottingham.ac.uk/studentservices/support/supportforyourstudies/info-for-care-leavers.aspx

If you can say which rough area (city / county) you're in I'd be happy to find the relevant stuff for your local university.

Please, please, please, when your foster child comes to fill out their UCAS form, encourage them to tick the box that says they're a care leaver. It opens up SO much support from the universities, and can mean that their application is given extra consideration.

Alister84 Mon 23-Oct-17 13:45:40

Thanks a million insert1usernamehere! Some really interesting information.
We are in a similar situation with our FD now 16, turning 17 in April. We are trying to plan and encourage her to go to collage/University which she is keen to do. My initial research shows that those in Care here in Scotland are now eligible for a bursary of over £7,000 per year of study and we don't pay tuition fees here as i'm sure you know. We are also about to start the battle to have her placement fully funded with us until she turns 21 under the continuing care legislation so we can have her study from home (if she chooses).

insert1usernamehere Mon 23-Oct-17 14:17:33

@Alister84 I have very little knowledge of what goes on north of the border with these things (I'm in England), but similar WP schemes will exist and I did find this info for Scottish care leavers going to uni propel.org.uk/scotland/support/funding/

WP projects include...
Edinburgh www.ed.ac.uk/student-recruitment/widening-participation/projects
Glasgow www.gla.ac.uk/explore/wideningparticipation/
St Andrew's www.st-andrews.ac.uk/study/access/projects/

If you can't get her placement fully funded and / or she wants to move out, she should be able to get year-round accommodation from the uni she goes to, so you don't need to worry about what happens in the holidays. Too early to tell yet (unless FD has views) but going to uni in the same city but living out might be a good balance of independence and support when she needs it.

As she's in lower sixth, now would be a good time to get her along to one or two open days as a day out - not necessarily ones she will go to eventually, but so she can visit a campus and see what a university looks like (not scary), meet some current students (relatable) and get a feel for things / have something to aim for. As she'll get to the application stage this time next year, serious research and going to specific open days tends to start from March onwards give or take
www.opendays.com/calendar/

Mrstrumpalot Tue 24-Oct-17 00:02:30

Thanks Insert this is all so useful.
As I said it is a few years off yet but I like to plan ahead and so does my young person!
We are in the north east of England.

insert1usernamehere Tue 24-Oct-17 23:29:49

For North East things...

NERAP does WP things across the NE for LAC and other target groups, including foster carer training www.nerap.ac.uk/outreach/nerap-outreach-activity/layp/foster-carer-training/

Choices Together looks excellent if your FC is in Y10-11 www.nerap.ac.uk/outreach/nerap-outreach-activity/layp/choices/

There are special Foster Family Fun Days if you have a FC in Y7-9 (next one is tomorrow(!) but it sounds like there will be more!) www.nerap.ac.uk/outreach/nerap-outreach-activity/layp/lac-fun-days/

Partners Programme (done alongside UCAS form in Y13 for Newcastle Uni) www.ncl.ac.uk/schools/partners/

NU Entry (Northumbria Uni; Y12&13) www.northumbria.ac.uk/study-at-northumbria/information-for-schools-and-colleges/northumbria-university-supported-entry-scheme/

NNECL www.nnecl.org/activities?region=North%20East

Activities at Durham Uni www.dur.ac.uk/care.leavers/support/

Hopefully I've hit the right bit of the country and you're not actually in Yorkshire or something grin

Mrstrumpalot Wed 25-Oct-17 16:02:27

Thanks @insert1usernamehere
You are spot on with the location and have been so helpful. The information you have provided would have taken me ages to research.

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