I’m a student parent. Is there any financial help available?
If you are a full-time undergraduate student parent and get a loan from Student Finance England (SFE), you may get extra financial help during your time at university. Because you have children you can apply for extra grants via your online SFE account. SFE will look at your income (this will include your partner’s income if you have one) and work out whether you can get extra funding.
If you are not an undergraduate student, or don’t get a student loan from SFE, contact the Advice Centre for information about whether there is any additional financial help you can claim.
What can I get?
- PARENTS’ LEARNING ALLOWANCE: This is a grant of up to £1,766 per year (depending on your income). This is to help with your learning costs - books, course materials etc.
- ADULT DEPENDANTS’ GRANT: If you have an adult who is financially dependent on you, you may qualify for up to £3,094 Adult Dependents’ Grant. Usually the dependent adult will be your partner, parent or grandparent.
- CHILDCARE GRANT: Depending on your income, you may be eligible for help with your childcare costs (up to a maximum amount).
Does MMU offer any financial help to students with children?
MMU has a hardship grant that students can apply for once they have enrolled at university. This is known as the Day to Day Support Fund. Applications from students with children (especially lone parents) are prioritized so make sure you apply.
Can I claim benefits?
Most full-time students can’t claim benefits, but students with dependent children may be eligible. Some of your student loan may be classed as income and, if you have a partner, any income that they have may also be used to work out how much you are entitled to.
What can I claim?
- CHILD BENEFIT: This is a fixed amount per child. £21.05 per week for your first child and £13.95 per week for any further children.
- UNIVERSAL CREDIT: This is a relatively new benefit that has replaced some existing benefits (such as Housing Benefit and Tax Credits) and is paid monthly. If you are a full-time student and have children, you can make a claim. The amount that you get will depend on how much income you have (including your student loan) and your circumstances (e.g. your rent, how many children you have etc.).
How do I claim benefits?
- CHILD BENEFIT: To claim Child Benefit for the first time you need to print off a CH2 form, fill it in, and send it to the Child Benefit Office.
- - UNIVERSAL CREDIT: You can apply for Universal Credit online.
Does MMU offer childcare?
Unfortunately, MMU does not have links with a childcare provider. Look on the website of your local council and you should be able to search registered childcare providers within your area. It can be difficult to arrange your childcare before you know when you will need to be on campus so try to get hold of your timetable as soon as possible. Your Student Hub should be able to help you with this (or they may need to transfer you to the Program Team for your course). Remember that you may also need to arrange childcare for periods of self-study when you are not on campus.
Is there any extra academic support for students with children?
There is nothing specifically aimed at students with children, but some of the support available may be particularly helpful if you are balancing studying with family life. See the following:
- Academic and Study Skills Team. Can help with study skills such as writing, numeracy, presentations, time management and revision.
- Wellbeing Advisers. There for students with worries or anxiety who would find it helpful to talk to someone.
- If you are having difficulties on your course, make sure you speak to an academic tutor or your Student Experience Support Tutor as soon as possible.
- Exceptional Factors. If you miss an assessment or think that your performance has been affected due to unexpected events (such as your child being ill) submit Exceptional Factors. The Advice Centre can help you through the process.
I’m finding parenting really hard - Is there any support available?
Family Lives is a charity that offers support to families who are struggling. They can help with issues such as family breakdown, challenging behavior, debt, and emotional and mental wellbeing.
Adoption UK offers advice and training to adoptive parents.
I think I might be pregnant/my partner is expecting a baby. Who can I talk to?
- The Advice Centre for financial advice and options relating to your course.
- Your GP for clinical options and issues linked to your health.
- BPAS is the UK’s largest abortion care provider.
- The Miscarriage Association offers support if you have been affected by miscarriage, ectopic pregnancy or molar pregnancy.
- SANDS is the leading still birth and neonatal death charity in the UK.