Drama school acceptance fee. Has anyone any experience please?

(21 Posts)
AgadorSpartacus Fri 21-Feb-20 10:06:00

This morning DS has been offered a degree place at Drama School which is brilliant. However there is an acceptance fee of £500. This is refundable at the end of the three years. However, he also auditioned for another Drama school yesterday and is waiting to hear if he’s got a recall. This is his absolute top choice and if offered a place would definitely want to go there.
We are a very low income family, travel accommodation and Audition fees have drained us. We can probably pull together the £500 for acceptance although I’m not sure where from, but I wondered what the acceptance window is as we couldn’t afford to accept then lose it if he then gets in to the other place.
Please help I’m in an absolute tailspin about this although DS doesn’t know and I’m in no way going to burst his bubble at this point.

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Decorhate Fri 21-Feb-20 10:10:34

Is this a private drama school (ie one that you don’t apply to through UCAS. Otherwise it would be very unusual.

Comefromaway Fri 21-Feb-20 10:14:26

Congratulations to your son.

The paperwork should tell you when you have to accept the place by. I know that for DaDa candidates they can't ask for an acceptance fee until after DaDa funding has been offered.

IS the degree course a fully Student Finance funded one or is it one of the ones with a top up (where you can only get £6k from Student Finance and you have to pay the rest).

AgadorSpartacus Fri 21-Feb-20 10:20:30

He applied through UCAS and will be covered by student loan for fees and maintenance. That’s why he didn’t apply for Arts Ed or Mountview we couldn’t afford the top up even if he did get in.

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Comefromaway Fri 21-Feb-20 10:35:10

Are you prepared to say which drama school it is. it does sound unusual. Is the offer unconditional or conditional upon getting certain ucas points?

AgadorSpartacus Fri 21-Feb-20 10:48:12

Yes actually. Don’t know why I’m being secretive grin
He’s been offered the BHons at PErformance preparation Academy in Guildford which is the school asking for £500 acceptance which will be refunded at the end of the 3 years.
He auditioned for GSA yesterday. I’ve been all over their website and info and can’t find anything about an acceptance fee should he get in.
So confused and worried right now.

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Hepsibar Fri 21-Feb-20 11:02:31

Well done to your son.

How awful of these schools to be so excluding ... but it must be how they keep out the hoi palloi and I wouldn't mind taking a bet they have charitable status ...

Seriously though is it worthy having a conversation ... could you pay it over so many months ... even if they ended up charging you more?


AgadorSpartacus Fri 21-Feb-20 11:03:37

They haven’t specified in the acceptance email if it’s conditional or unconditional and UCAS hasn’t been updated at this point so currently not so sure about that.

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HatBox Fri 21-Feb-20 11:08:39

PM sent

AgadorSpartacus Fri 21-Feb-20 11:14:54

I could certainly speak to them but the fact is if he gets into GSA he would want to go there. Without doubt. If it turned out that there isn’t an acceptance fee for GSA then we could maybe hmm take the hit of the £500 (not really but finances have been juggled for quite some time now).
Argh. I want him to go where he wants to go but it’s hard now it’s a reality.

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Comefromaway Fri 21-Feb-20 11:19:05

Hmm, doesn't surprise me it's somewhere like PPA. I'll ask around.

Good luck to him for GSA.

edgehorn Fri 21-Feb-20 11:21:11

You've said he's been offered a place on the degree course but the PPA website says that the acceptance fee is only for students on a diploma and foundation course? May be worth clarifying which course he's applied to as maybe it's an admin error?
If you're from a low income family, maybe call the admissions team and discuss it. There may be some sort or waiver.
I'd definitely do as others suggest and check the cut off date for accepting. If it's after the GSA outcome then that takes the stress off completely. GSA almost certainly won't have an acceptance fee.
Alternatively you could go on the website turn2us and see what charity grants are available to him.
Best of luck!

Comefromaway Fri 21-Feb-20 11:21:24

Are you aware there is an "optional" £1,250 per year at PPA. It says it's optional but in reality students are at a disadvantage if they don't pay it especially the agent showcase which is essential.

Comefromaway Fri 21-Feb-20 11:25:45

There should be no deposit for degree courses, only foundation & diploma (and diploma only after DaDa allocation)

MarchingFrogs Fri 21-Feb-20 11:30:52

I know nothing about the institution, but the website says:

A deposit of £500 is required upon acceptance to confirm a student’s place on our Diploma and Foundation courses.

This is a non-refundable deposit and will be reimbursed at the end of the course.

But the courses eligible for student finance are neither of these? Unless he is applying for a degree with a foundation year?

Comefromaway Fri 21-Feb-20 11:35:36

Performing Arts Foundation courses are different to Foundation Degrees or Degrees with a Foundation Year, Marching.

They are internal, non accredited courses that are basically audition preparation courses for those who have potential but are not yet ready for professional training. They are entirely privately funded.

Diploma Courses are the Level 6 Trinity Diploma. They are funded by a government scheme called the Dance and Drama Awards. You pay fees based on a sliding scale according to parental income. Only the very lowest earners get a maintenance grant (it's a grant not a loan).

So your interpretation is correct in that there should be no deposit for the degree course.

AgadorSpartacus Fri 21-Feb-20 11:41:30

Oh god blush blush

I am SO stupid. In my panic I didn’t read the website properly. What an absolute plank.
Yes the acceptance fee is for foundation and diploma.
He has been offered the degree so it doesn’t apply to him.
So sorry. Thankyou to everybody who answered me I do appreciate it feel so stupid.
Money is such a big deal at the moment we are constantly in a panic. It’s all that’s on my mind.

I’ll just slink off that way ——————>

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Comefromaway Fri 21-Feb-20 11:45:11

No question is stupid. Professional performing arts training is a minefield that requires spreadsheets and lots of experience!!!

MarchingFrogs Fri 21-Feb-20 11:53:02

No, you are not at all stupid, if the email was written in a way which caused any doubt as to whether paying a large sum of money up front is or isn't required, wherever else the information may be available. It really isn't too much of an admin task to set up different emails to go out to different groups of people, especially when the choice would seem to be one of a very small group of courses not requiring a deposit vs one of another very small group of courses, which do require a deposithmm.

JustForTheTasteOfIt Fri 21-Feb-20 13:06:29

You aren't stupid OP!

I've read this thread right to the end including your latest post and I still don't have a clue what the fuck it all means 😂

Glad it's sorted and good luck to your boy!

user1457824083 Fri 06-Mar-20 18:34:07

It is an easy mistake to make Agador. It may still be worth a phone call to make sure that there is no deadline for acceptance that is earlier than 'normal' degrees.
When my DD was offered places on foundations a couple of years ago, we were given 3 weeks to accept the place. As she was still auditioning I rang and got the deadline extended. They were very understanding and it was not a problem.

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