The Scottish Government makes means-tested childcare funds are available for students using registered childcare in the academic year 2023/24. The funds are made at the discretion of the University on an individual needs basis.
About this fund
The Childcare Fund assists students with study-related, registered childcare costs. Childcare will only be paid for your period of study at the University.
The fund will be awarded on a first-come, first-served basis until the funds are fully drawn.
This page contains the key information that must be read fully before applying. Incorrect or missing information will delay your application.
Who is the fund for?
This fund helps with childcare costs while you study. You must:
- be full-time UK undergraduate students receiving their income-assessed maintenance loan from their funding body (eg.SASS)
- be full-time UK postgraduate students in receipt of maintenance loan support from their funding body
- have received your first payment of your student loan
- have experienced a change in your financial circumstances
Before applying for assistance from the Childcare Fund, you are expected to have checked that you are receiving your full entitlement to state benefit payments, including :
- child benefit
- tax credits
- income support and housing benefit
- Lone Parent Childcare Grant from the Student Awards Agency for Scotland (If you are from Scotland).
Who isn’t eligible for this fund?
UK students who have not applied for or taken their full entitlement of support from their funding body
- students from England, Wales and Northern Ireland in receipt of a Childcare Grant
- those in receipt of an NHS bursary
- students supported under the Paramedic Science, Nursing and Midwifery Student Bursary Scheme
students who are registered for exams only
those on multiple repeat years
students who are on an authorised interruption of studies
students with informal childcare costs e.g. non-registered childminder, friends, family member
What can I get help with?
You may be eligible for support if you struggle to manage your basic living costs.
What costs are supported?
Childcare support packages help with the cost of formal registered childcare expenses for dependent children, including:
- after school clubs
- sitting services
- providers of pre-school education
You must use any free childcare places or equivalent discount to which you are entitled under the Scottish Governments scheme for 3 and 4 year olds. If you choose to use a provider that does not participate in the scheme, this may be reflected in a reduced award from the fund.
Speak to someone
Before applying for support, discuss your situation with the Welfare Advisors at the Students’ Association’s Advice Place. They can advise you on your application and help you access additional support.
Childcare provider declaration form
This form must be completed and uploaded during the application process. Each provider must complete the form if you have children with different providers.
Additional documents required
Any documentation that supports the information you provide in your personal statement.
2 months of statements from all the bank accounts you hold, including digital savings accounts, ISAs, cryptocurrency, digital assets, social media wallets, overseas accounts and shared accounts.
2 months of statements from all the bank accounts your spouse or a partner you live with holds.
Evidence of any income your receive, pay-slips, funding, or student loan award letters.
Evidence of any debt you have, credit card statements or default letters.
A copy of your lease if you rent.
Proof of your mortgage or rent costs.
Evidence of childcare costs you pay.
Screenshots will not be accepted. Please supply full digital statements or documents, preferably PDFs. Scans of paper documents are also acceptable.
Bank statements should be dated within a week of your application and show the:
- account holder name
- account number
- transaction details
- current balance.
Information we will ask you for
your fee status
your family situation, partner, dependents and children
your residency situation
a personal statement explaining why you need financial support
sources of funding you receive
your living situation
your financial situation and any debts you might have
your UK bank account details
how many instalments you would like to be paid in.
When you submit your application, we will email you a call number. Quote this number when you contact us.
Getting a decision
We can receive up to 1,000 applications per year. We do our best to assess applications as quickly as possible. We start assessing your application once all your documentation has been received. Collect all the required documents before starting your application for a faster decision.
You will receive an email about our decision.
Your first payment will be transferred to your nominated UK bank account within 10 days, provided your bank details have been added.
How is my application assessed?
With limited funds we must assess which students most need our help.
Priority will be given to students who are:
care leavers/care experienced
students estranged from their parents or guardians.
We evaluate how much money you have in income and savings and how much you spend on essential and non-essential expenses. If you have a shortfall, you may qualify for an award.
We do this by assessing your household income, savings and spending using the documents you provide. We evaluate your essential expenses against a capped amount per week.
Up to a maximum of £195 per week for a single person
Up to a maximum of £230 for a couple/family
(Monthly rent x 12)/52
(Updated from £175 to £195 for session 22/23)
£70 per week for all single students living in their own accommodation
£25 per week for students in catered halls with full board or living at home
Extra £25 per partner/child
Excluding takeaways and eating out.
(Updated from £55 to £70 for session 22/23)
Utilities - gas & electricity, broadband & telephone landline, mobile phone
|Up to £55 per week||
These costs are not allocated to those in student accommodation or where the rent agreement includes utility costs.
(Updated from £45 to £55 for session 22/23)
|Additional living costs, clothes, books, photocopying, travel||
£55 per week plus £10 per partner/child
|Only relevant where a Council Tax Discount does not cover the accommodation.|
£50 per week plus £10 per partner/child
This includes TV subscriptions, social & sporting events
(Update from £40 to £50 for session 22/23)
|Contents and other insurance||No set value|
|Max total costs per week for a single person||£425|
Circumstances that may affect your application
Awards will be reduced or refused in the following circumstances:
Student loans – You have not applied for your full income-based student loan (if you are eligible).
Savings - You have sufficient money available to you in savings.
Non-essential overspending - You spend more than £500 per month on non-essential expenses such as takeaways, alcohol, eating out, clothing or recreation/entertainment.
Gambling - You spend £100 or more per month on gambling
Disputes, appeals and fraudulent applications
We hope that your application process goes as smoothly as possible. If you have any issues with our decisions, we have a dispute and appeals procedure that you can follow. If we discover that your application or any documents you provide us are fraudulent, we will investigate.
We reduce or remove awards where we identify consistent regular gambling of £100 or more per month. This will also include matched betting. This is part of our responsibilities as a government funding provider. Should you need support for gambling, please see:
Frequently asked questions
We aim to support as many students as possible. You can apply more than once during the academic year. Each case is considered on its merits at the time of application. However, previous applications - whether successful or not - will be taken into consideration.
The Scottish Government.