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School bursaries?

(30 Posts)
muthr Fri 21-Mar-14 22:39:52

DH and I were wondering if we would possibly qualify for a bursary for a boarding school. DS is desperate to go but we really can't afford it especially because we're living overseas so would have to pay for flights too.

DH and I each about 50,000 pounds per year each before tax. I know that doesn't sound too bad but I would expect that realistically sending DS to board would cost at least 40,000 including school trips, extras and flights, possibly more.

We only have one house which we have a mortgage on and don't own any other property. We don't have any family members who could contribute to the cost.

meditrina Fri 21-Mar-14 22:42:57

You would have to enquire at each school youare interested in about their bursary policy, typical income threshold and how they do the caluculation. And even them accept it's not a sure thing (amounts they offer can vary, depending on health of bursary fund and number of other pupils holding awards).

Have you considered state boarding?

muthr Fri 21-Mar-14 22:47:21

DH wants DS to go to a public school and I think DS feels the same. I think in general public schools get better results and are more academically challenging although I could be wrong about that.

Do you think there would be any chance of a bursary or do we just earn too much?

Dinosaursareextinct Fri 21-Mar-14 22:55:28

IME you earn too much for even a small bursary, though obviously bursary schemes will all be different. It sounds as though you could manage the full cost if you live a modest lifestyle. And he wouldn't need to go on the school trips.

muthr Fri 21-Mar-14 22:59:57

The problem is that we have another, younger DS who might then expect to go to boarding school too. Realistically we couldn't afford it and I think the cost of living here is higher than in the UK too.

Dinosaursareextinct Fri 21-Mar-14 23:01:28

I'd forget it, TBH. Or consider state boarding.

TeaAndALemonTart Fri 21-Mar-14 23:01:30

No chance imo.

kitnkaboodle Sat 22-Mar-14 00:07:29

I'm sure you earn too much for a bursary. The bursary funds are there for bright kids whose parents could never normally afford private education. I know two women whose kids got 100% bursaries from private schools - both single parents, one works as a TA, the other I don't know, but I think she rents rather than owns her home.

Bursaries are the reasons why private schools qualify for charitable statues. They are there to help people without means

kitnkaboodle Sat 22-Mar-14 00:08:55

status not statues!

muthr Sat 22-Mar-14 01:52:22

Would DS getting a scholarship improve our chances of a bursary?

basildonbond Sat 22-Mar-14 06:54:13

Not really - depends on the school however most schools get many more applications for bursary places than they could possibly fund so realistically the children who get them will have done very well in the exam and/or having something exceptional to offer the school

I'm afraid you earn too much for a bursary for most schools and even if you did get one it would mean substantial changes to your lifestyle as you'd still be expected to pay a hefty chunk of the fees

I think you and your ds need to adjust your expectations - why have you and your dp been discussing hit with him in the first place without working out that it's unaffordable?

inthename Sat 22-Mar-14 06:54:36

You would need to contact each school you are interested in. Some senior schools attach bursaries to scholarships, others don't.
Ring or email the bursary department of each school that you are interested in and ask them.

muthr Sat 22-Mar-14 07:38:32

basildonbond, we have been discussing it with him because he's 15 and we believe he's old enough to have a say in his education. If he desperately wants to go we will try to manage without a bursary if we can't get one.

meditrina Sat 22-Mar-14 09:19:24

You need to ask the school/s you want. It is different for each, and may be different again for 6th form (as affordability of 2 years is quite different to the 5 or 7 of earlier entry points).

The importance of securing a scholarship in securing a bursary also varies between schools.

starving Sat 22-Mar-14 13:22:57

In my experience bursaries and scholarships are dealt with totally separately. At DDs school the top threshold for a bursary is £55K household income, ie above that you get nothing, slightly below that you may get 10% and then a sliding scale to 100% at around £15K. But schools are different so you need to speak to the schools that you are considering

Impatientismymiddlename Sat 22-Mar-14 13:31:00

You probably earn too much. Even the most expensive (£35kpa) boarding schools have an income threshold of around £85k for bursaries. If you are British citizens you could consider state boarding schools or you will need to find a way to fund public school without assistance.
Are there no boarding schools in the country where you live?

muthr Sat 22-Mar-14 20:53:01

Thanks, I think we'll still apply because we don't see the harm in trying. There are a few boarding schools here but none of them are full boarding as far as I can see, most of them only have about 30 boarders and not all of them stay over weekends.

kitnkaboodle Sat 22-Mar-14 22:44:21

If you can manage to fund him without the bursary, then I don't see how you think that you might qualify for a bursary??

Bursaries are not scholarships based on ability - they are a means-tested form of assistance (tho, as someone rightly says above, they are more likely to give bursaries to kids of scholarship standard)

muthr Sat 22-Mar-14 23:09:16

If we don't get a bursary then he won't be going unless he gets a significant scholarship (at least 40%). We wouldn't be able to fund it without some sort of scholarship or bursary.
I know that a bursary and a scholarship are different but at many schools you can apply to have your scholarship augmented.

MillyMollyMama Sun 23-Mar-14 00:13:21

40% fee reduction for a scholarship would be high. Very many are 25% or much lower, ie nothing. I would have found all this out before discussing it with him. Could be heading for a big disappointment now!

AnnaGriffiths Sun 23-Mar-14 00:20:29

I've seen some schools which have up to 50% scholarships. I think it's unlikely that you'll get a bursary though but I suppose you might as well try.

middleclasaonbursary Sun 23-Mar-14 09:01:43

Haven't read all of this but IME you could qualify for some sort of financial assistance. We don't earn quite as much as you do but we're not a million miles off it and we get a substantial bursary. We reckon to pay the full fees you have or be on at least £130 000+ pa. If you do the maths to comfortably fork out £40 000 then you need to have at least £60 000 gross that you not channelling in too mortgages/food/life insurance/utilities/transport costs etc. You need to pick your school carefully there are only a small handful who have really generous bursary policies who might consider you. I can go into details about approaching schools about bursaries if you want but I have posted extensively on similar threads you can search them I believe.
If you try for a scholarship any financial help will also be means tested as few offer automatic generous financial awards to scholars. But it is a road you could look at.
Finally entry into 6th form (which I'm assuming is what your looking for) is becoming increasingly competitive, schools are going to be looking for exceptionally able pupils even those who are not very selective at 13+ Will have a much higher academic criteria at 16+ and the ones with big bursary pots are pretty selective in general and will be very selective for their sixth forms. For stand alone bursaries look at Christ Hospital (although I suspect they will say you earn too much) and then the super selectives St. Paul's, (very hard to get into for 6th form) only has a small number of full boarders but nearly all are 6th formers and from abroad, Eton, and Win Coll. Off the top of my head I can't think of any more but there are others I will post agin if I think of them.

Clavinova Sun 23-Mar-14 09:08:54

There's certainly someone on this forum whose ds has a 60% bursary at Winchester College (no scholarship) with a household income of �85,000 so it's probably worth making a few phone calls at the very least - especially if your ds is scholarship standard.

EdithWeston Sun 23-Mar-14 09:10:32

Well at leat if you are looking for a high scholarship, that'll be easy to find out from the school websites (value of awards is fixed and published)

But do be wary of choising a school solely for affordability. When will you all be coming over for recce visits, and what schools are on your list so far as a good fit for your DS's aptitudes and character?

Clavinova Sun 23-Mar-14 09:10:42


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