education cop out!

hev
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Joined: Fri Oct 05, 2012 3:22 pm

education cop out!

Postby hev » Fri Oct 05, 2012 3:34 pm

Hi Im new to this site! i am interested in anyone who had an agreement with ss to fund education grants when our sgo children go on to college! we had an agreement and now they have pulled funding and said that the wording on our court order said support but the word financial wasnt :evil: but they said all of this at our meetings before hand? I cannot believe they would go back on thier word. does anyone know what to do? thanks sorry not the best intrduction to me :oops:

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Robin D
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Re: education cop out!

Postby Robin D » Fri Oct 05, 2012 4:05 pm

Hi and welcome.

First a question: Was the child(ren) in the care system before SGO was made? The answer to that changes much of what follows.

There seem to be more and more LA's looking hard at the agreements and taking the least generous interpretation.

You need first of all to commence on the formal complaint procedure. Have a look at advice sheet 25 at the bottom of page at http://www.frg.org.uk/need-help-or-advice/advice-sheets. Please be aware that many posters here have the view that stage 1 and 2 complaints are whitewashed, and its only Stage 3, Judicial Reviews or the Ombudsman that are ever taken seriously. I think though it does vary by authority so you may well have a different experience. Ideally you need names of those that gave you the information originally, so see if you can look them up.

You do have to go through all the stages, so be prepared for it all to take months if not years.

If the child was in the care system before the SGO was made, it seems fairly clear that they have a duty to the child. It's probably better to post back that information here, (with nothing that identifies the authority, or individuals please) so that people are better able to help. Alternatively, you can call the advice line free and confidentially on 0808 801 0366.

You might also like to look at a recent thread that had a good outcome. http://www.frg.org.uk/FandFCForum/viewtopic.php?f=8&t=2947.

Good luck ...... Robin
Former F&F carer, foster carer, adopter and respite carer for umpteen children. Now retired and when with kids, making sure they 'go home' at the end of the day.

hev
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Joined: Fri Oct 05, 2012 3:22 pm

Re: education cop out!

Postby hev » Fri Oct 05, 2012 4:09 pm

I was the childrens foster carer at the time. they were both uder full care orders and the department were corporate parents

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Robin D
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Re: education cop out!

Postby Robin D » Sat Oct 06, 2012 8:39 am

In that case the Children (Leaving Care) Act 2000 is pertinent.

Another factor is that under a SGO, I seem to remember there being a recent ruling that a child is considered to be living independently of its parents and is therefore able to get funding for University. I don't know the detail but I'm sure David Roth will. He will be looking in here during the course of the next few days. Alternative, do please call the advice line for more accurate information.

Best wishes ....... Robin
Former F&F carer, foster carer, adopter and respite carer for umpteen children. Now retired and when with kids, making sure they 'go home' at the end of the day.

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ied53
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Re: education cop out!

Postby ied53 » Sat Oct 06, 2012 9:52 am

this was posted by LLB I suggest you read the thread they succeeded this was a copy of letter posted by LLB for our information.

From the information you have provided your grandson will be eligible for the maximum student support from Student Finance England. A young person can only be assessed based on the income of natural parents, adoptive parents or a spouse if married. If none of these apply then they cannot assess grandparents income instead but will assess the student as independent. Unless the student has independent income (e.g. from investments) then they are considered to have nil income hence being entitled to the maximum support. Part time work before or during study is ignored.

Inevitably the Government requires proof of the situation to satisfy themselves that there is no relevant income to be assessed. When your grandson completes the application, there is a section that deals with ‘dependent and independent students’. He needs to select the description which applies to his circumstances. The one which seems likely to apply states “At any point from the age of 16 to the start of your course, you have not been under the care of your parents; and, for three months or more, you have been in the custody or legal care of, or have been given accommodation by, a local authority.” Being subject to a full care order followed by a special guardianship order meets these criteria.

If he applies online they will then write to him requesting evidence - providing you have documentary evidence of the Special Guardianship Order this should be sufficient.

I’m afraid this is an area which Student Finance England is not great at. Coincidentally I was at a meeting with colleagues from around the Midlands this morning discussing the issues faced in higher education by young people from a care or similar background and one concern raised was that there is no specific advice or information on the student funding website. This will be taken up with them via the channels open to us. I will also warn you in advance, when Student Finance England assesses a young person as independent they usually ask them to prove it again each year. In cases such as your grandsons this seems a waste of everyone’s time as they should really carry his independent status forward but in my experience they rarely do. If he has difficulties with this when applying for his second year funding I will be able to help him sort it out.

She also asked me whether I would mind her submitting my emails to her without my personal details to which I agreed.

On the topic of being "estranged from parents" she also confirmed that I was right and that it does not apply to those on Special Guardianship Orders or full care orders. It is for those who for other reasons live elsewhere and have had no contact with their parents.

I shall be really glad when all of this is sorted. It has stressed me out somewhat but maybe if there are any avenues where the frg can back the university welfare workers in getting student finance to alter their website it would maybe help.

Many thanks

LLB

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Joined: Thu Sep 06, 2007 10:10 pm
Irene
Grandparent carer in Lincolnshire
Tough times never last tough people do

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David Roth
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Re: education cop out!

Postby David Roth » Mon Oct 08, 2012 9:24 am

Welcome to the discussin forum, hev.

Irene is right when she states that there is a lot of useful information on this topic in the thread she has posted the quotation from. You can read the full discussion, which started last year and covers five pages, here: http://www.frg.org.uk/FandFCForum/viewtopic.php?f=8&t=2947

There is a lot of information there that you would find useful if you do decide to challenge the local authority's actions.

Perhaps if you read through that discussion, you could come back here with any queries?
David Roth
FRG Policy Adviser

hev
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Joined: Fri Oct 05, 2012 3:22 pm

Re: education cop out!

Postby hev » Tue Oct 09, 2012 7:51 am

Can I just thank all of the above for thier responces, this is a minefield and the only suggestion I had from Children and Young Peoples Services was that if I was to kick them out of thier home then they would help! that is one of the worse things I have ever heard....

But this note is one of thanks so thank you! thank you! thank you!


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