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    Hi all

    I am a mature student about to embark on a PGCE/QTS SCITT (school centred initial teacher training). I am based in Lancashire and will be based at a local school for the duration of my course. It is affiliated with UCL in London who will grant me my qualification. I will go to London once a month as part of the course.

    I've applied to student finance England who have granted me a maintenance loan but - and I'm not complaining here - it seems very high. It's over £12000! This does NOT include the tuition fee which has been granted separately.

    The confirmation letter shows me as studying at UCL's Bloomsbury Campus. Although this is correct this isn't where I will be based full time and I think I've been awarded London rates.

    I am a single parent of a 14-year old, and I will not be working during my studies. Can anyone advise me what I should be entitled to? I've rung SFE and they say it's correct...as I'm not working I am budgeting in accordance with the financial assistance I've been granted and if it's incorrect it will be financially difficult for me, so I need to get it right. Thanks in advance.
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    It sounds as though they've got you down as living in London. You also get extra (I'm not too sure how much) because you have a child.
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    If you've called them and they say it is correct then I would leave it at that. I can't comment on the exact amount but it looks like a London rate, or in tandem with money for having a child. Providing your details are correct they'll give you the correct amount.

    I do recommend getting something in writing though. Send an email or ask for a written letter confirming the amount. That way if for some odd reason it turns out later to be the wrong amount (and they ask you to pay it back) you have evidence that they told you it was the correct amount. That way there's more chance they can't hold you accountable for their mistake, if it indeed wasn't correct.

    If you are being awarded a London rate and won't be in London most of your time then this would be an incorrect amount. But it could also be maintenance taking your child into account. You'd have to contact someone to find out and ask for a breakdown of your loan (which you may also be able to find by logging into your student loan account, mentioned below by Tiger Rag).

    If after you've called and have it in writing they still say this is the correct amount then take it and don't question it. Twice is more than enough for them to fix any mistakes they may have made.
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    Have you been sent (you can also view this online) a payment schedule? This has a breakdown of how much money you'll receive. It should say £x per term for maintenance loan, £y for tuition (paid directly to uni) and £z which is payments for having a child. (parents learning allowance, etc)
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    Thank you all very much for your replies.

    I'll ring them again and try to explain again my situation - forgot to mention previously that I actually wrote to them and explained that I would be based full time in Lancashire, and that the SCITT consortium training course was not listed in their records so I used the details of the affiliating University. I'll see if a call to explain changes anything. If not then as you say, take it and say nothing else!

    Appreciate all your input. Thanks again.
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    (Original post by Acsel)
    If you've called them and they say it is correct then I would leave it at that. I can't comment on the exact amount but it looks like a London rate, or in tandem with money for having a child. Providing your details are correct they'll give you the correct amount.

    I do recommend getting something in writing though. Send an email or ask for a written letter confirming the amount. That way if for some odd reason it turns out later to be the wrong amount (and they ask you to pay it back) you have evidence that they told you it was the correct amount. That way there's more chance they can't hold you accountable for their mistake, if it indeed wasn't correct.

    If you are being awarded a London rate and won't be in London most of your time then this would be an incorrect amount. But it could also be maintenance taking your child into account. You'd have to contact someone to find out and ask for a breakdown of your loan (which you may also be able to find by logging into your student loan account, mentioned below by Tiger Rag).

    If after you've called and have it in writing they still say this is the correct amount then take it and don't question it. Twice is more than enough for them to fix any mistakes they may have made.

    I'd double check, and have something in writing.

    You don't want to get hit with a grant overpayment
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    Sooo...to update.

    I've rung SFE and had a 20 minute conversation, whilst being put on hold several times for the advisor to clarify things with another staff member.

    She has told me that because I am training under non-salaried school direct, I am classed as training at a university, even though I'm based in a school. As my university is based in London - even though I'm not - I get the London rate.

    So there you have it. I need to write to request it in writing from the Glasgow office of SFE but the lass I spoke to has said she has noted it all up on my account in case I ring again and someone else needs to look at my case.

    She assures me that it is correct.

    I have a record of this call and the previous call I made in May, and a copy of the letter I sent them to explain where I'm studying. I have rung twice to query it, and both times I have been told it's correct.

    I think I'll leave it at that for now...
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    Thanks for the update. That's interesting regarding the London loan.

    I'd leave it too, I think! You've questioned it twice and whilst sometimes they may get it wrong, I don't think two different people would tell you the same wrong thing.
 
 
 
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