A key priority of the Government is to eliminate the gap in attainment between those from poorer and more affluent backgrounds, and to ensure every young person participates in and benefits from a place in 16-19 education and training. The Government provides funding to tackle disadvantage both through the Education Funding Agency’s (EFA) funding formula and through support to help young people meet the costs of participating in education and training post-16.

This guide provides information to schools, colleges, academies, training providers and local authorities (providers) on the operation of the 16-19 Bursary Fund. It is non-statutory and sets out the arrangements the Secretary of State intends to make under section 14 of the Education Act 2002. It should be read in conjunction with the documents 2012/13 16-19 Bursary Fund Q&A for Providers and Local Authorities and 16-19 Bursary Fund Examples of Good Practice.

2012/13 will be the second academic year of the 16-19 Bursary Fund and providers will want to review their initial policies to ensure the funds at their disposal are targeted towards those students experiencing the greatest financial disadvantages and/or course-related costs.

Local arrangements should be clearly communicated to prospective and actual students, and criteria for the £1,200 vulnerable groups bursaries should be clear and accurate so that all students in the eligible vulnerable groups are aware of these payments.


  • Introduction
  • 16-19 Bursary Fund
  • Eligibility
  • Assessment and payment of bursaries
  • Allocations to providers
  • Communications, governance and monitoring
  • Further information