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Student parent information

This record contains information for parents who are also students about extra benefits, funds and sources of financial support that may be available: 

The GOV.UK website has a useful section on student finance

Childcare Grant:  If you have a child under 15, or under 17 if they have a special educational needs, and are in full time higher education you can apply for a Childcare Grant to help with up to 80% of your childcare costs with an Ofsted registered provider.   

Parents Learning Allowance: Full time students with children can get an additional grant to help with their learning costs.  The money can help pay for books, study materials and travel.  How much you get depends on your household income. 

There is also a list of course types that offer some additional funding – for example teaching, social work, NHS, dance and drama courses.  Check the student finance link above to see the current list. 

Child Tax Credits

You may be entitled to Child Tax Credit if you have children whether you are working or not. The amount you can claim will depend on:

• the number of children you have
• your weekly childcare costs
• your annual household income – this will include any other state benefits you may receive.

Working Tax Credits

You may also be able to claim working tax credits if you or your partner are working.  This can pay for up to 70% of your childcare costs when using an Ofsted registered childcare provider. 

• If you are a one parent family you will need to work at least 16 hours per week. 
• If you are a two parent family and you both work your combined hours should be 24 per week, with one of you working at least 16 hours per week. 
• If you are a two parent family and only one of you work then that person must work at least 24 hours per week. 

Visit the HMRC website to use their tax credits calculators and make a claim:

Free Funded Nursery Education

3 & 4 year olds: Starting the term after your child's third birthday they are entitled to 15 hours free early education a week. To be funded by Luton Borough Council, children need to attend an early years setting in Luton, if your child attends a setting outside of Luton the funding will be provided by that Local Authority. This funding is also available with certain (not all) childminders. Your early years provider will give you a parental declaration form to complete. Please note that you do not need to pay anything to access the funded hours and can access only the funded hours without being pressured to take additional hours.

2 year olds: Some families may be able to claim 15 hours of free early learning or education for their two-year-old children. This funding is not available to everyone and families must meet a strict criteria to be eligible. Please contact Luton Family Information Service (FIS) to see if you qualify or visit the Time for Twos page for information about qualification criteria and an online application form.   

Care to learn

If you are a teenage parent the Care to Learn scheme can help pay for some of your childcare costs so that you can continue your education or training. This training can be in a school, college or with a work-based learning provider that receives public funding, and includes young parents continuing with compulsory education. For further information about the support available call the Learner Support Service on 0800 121 8989 or visit 

Discretionary Learner Support Fund

If you are aged 20 or over and are attending a further education college studying on a course funded by the Skills Funding Agency, the Discretionary Learner Support Fund may be able to help you with a variety of costs, including childcare. To apply for this funding you will need to speak to your college student support team or welfare officer. For further information about the Discretionary Learner Support Fund contact the National Careers Service on 0800 100 900 or visit

Useful websites:

Student Parents is a website specifically written for all students with children. It includes useful information about funding, applying and preparing for your course. 

Last updated 21/02/2018