Grants for University for those on SGO

LLB
Posts: 541
Joined: Thu Sep 06, 2007 9:10 pm

Re: Grants for University for those on SGO

Post by LLB » Mon Oct 03, 2011 3:14 pm

I have just had another email and I would like to forward it to you but don't know how but it contains this:


Young people who are on SGOs are not looked after children. Therefore they are not eligible for the support which is available to care leavers. Care leavers are defined as young people who have been looked after for a period of 13 weeks continuously, or over a period of time from after they reached the age of 14 and ended after they reached 16. I am sorry that this will come as a disappointing reply on this point.
Yours sincerely


Public Communications Unit
http://www.education.gov.uk

As part of our commitment to improving the service we provide to our customers, we are interested in hearing your views and would welcome your comments via our website at http://www.education.gov.uk/pcusurvey

. To contact the Department for Education, please visit http://www.education.gov.uk/contactus[/b]
[/color]

So this is what the government is telling everyone! How can I get it across that the criteria is whether the child was a looked after child immediately prior to the SGO and has nothing to do with being sixteen for Care Leavers? Are they confused or am I?
Last edited by LLB on Thu Oct 06, 2011 8:48 am, edited 2 times in total.

User avatar
Suzie, FRG Adviser
Posts: 674
Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2011 11:25 am

Re: Grants for University for those on SGO

Post by Suzie, FRG Adviser » Tue Oct 04, 2011 11:04 am

Dear llb,

I have checked again the position regarding accessing advice and assistance and it is clear that a child subject to a SGO who was “looked after” immediately prior to the SGO being made is able to access support from the LA who looked after them. This is S24(1A) Children Act 1989.

Please see the link to this section.

http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/1989/41/section/24

I suggest that you forward a copy of the link and our advice sheet to the advisor at the Public Communications Unit pointing out that she may have made an error in her email to you and getting her to clarify her position. Good luck!

Best wishes,

Suzie

LLB
Posts: 541
Joined: Thu Sep 06, 2007 9:10 pm

Re: Grants for University for those on SGO

Post by LLB » Thu Oct 06, 2011 9:26 am

Many thanks. I have just done this but I have to do it through the website because is one of those email addresses which doesn't accept replies. We will wait and see what happens. If one department can get it so wrong then is it a sign of things to come?

User avatar
Suzie, FRG Adviser
Posts: 674
Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2011 11:25 am

Re: Grants for University for those on SGO

Post by Suzie, FRG Adviser » Thu Oct 06, 2011 11:36 am

I hope it is just an error on their behalf! It is good that you are pursuing this as there is a lot of money at stake and also a lot of people wouldn’t have taken it any further. Let us know what happens.


Best wishes,
Suzie

LLB
Posts: 541
Joined: Thu Sep 06, 2007 9:10 pm

Re: Grants for University for those on SGO

Post by LLB » Fri Oct 07, 2011 8:51 am

I have been given an email address for student finance and have given them the details of my grandson.

One thought that did cross my mind was could they argue that the legislation only refers to advice and assistance that is given by the local authority. In my mind if it states that those with SGOs should be treated the same as those coming out of the care system then he should be entitled to financial help from universities that is on offer to those care leavers.

Again the bit about being classed as an Independent Student has to be clarified. I know that I use to have a reference to that and I do know that our income would not be taken into consideration because that has been confirmed.

I did contact the local authority for advice and was pointed towards the normal websites for UCAS and student finance. However, having got rid of Social Services and having had a horrible experience, I was reluctant to get them too involved because we also have a younger grandson. I shall have to look again at what happens to our allowance between his birthday and the end of the school year as per our financial agreement.

User avatar
Suzie, FRG Adviser
Posts: 674
Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2011 11:25 am

Re: Grants for University for those on SGO

Post by Suzie, FRG Adviser » Tue Oct 11, 2011 12:36 pm

Dear LLB,

Those with SGO’s are only treated the same as those leaving care-who do not satisfy the “edible” and “relevant” and “former relevant” categories. This area of the law is complex so it is worth looking at advice sheet 16 here.

http://www.frg.org.uk/pdfs/16.%20Suppor ... 20care.pdf


So in that respect-they will not be the same as all care leavers only some. They will receive the same “advice and assistance” as some care leavers, those children who are privately fostered and other children who have been subject to SGO and were looked after just before the SGO was granted.

You could request written information as to what support the local authority are offering to those in this category.
Best wishes,
Suzie

LLB
Posts: 541
Joined: Thu Sep 06, 2007 9:10 pm

Re: Grants for University for those on SGO

Post by LLB » Wed Oct 12, 2011 4:35 pm

Yes I find 3.4 confusing but from what I can make out someone who is over 16 years of age and subject to an SGO which came about immediately following a full care order under the government legislation is entitled to care leaver advice and assistance. We were told when we were going through the SGOs that this support would be available.

It also states in Special Guardianship booklet FRG 2006 on page 104 Under the paragraph "Eligibility of young people for an aftercare service"

"In England, children looked after by local authorities immediately prior to the granting of an SGO will qualify for aftercare advice and assistance in their own right. This is a benefit that is not open to them if they leave care via an RO.

It then states at the bottom s.24 (1)A CA and Regulation 22 SGR


The legislation clearly states that he qualifies so where am I going wrong?

User avatar
Suzie, FRG Adviser
Posts: 674
Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2011 11:25 am

Re: Grants for University for those on SGO

Post by Suzie, FRG Adviser » Thu Oct 13, 2011 1:40 pm

Dear LLB,

I am not sure how far you have taken it with Children’s Services. If you do decide to take it up with them later this year then you could first request a copy of their leaving care provisions. They are under a duty to publish these.

Using the guidance, email children’s services (is it the 16 plus team or is there a team or person that deals specifically with SGO’s) and ask for an assessment for support under these provisions and ask for the timescale of the assessment. If you are still not getting anywhere then you could take the matter up with the service manager or go via the complaints department.

Best wishes,
Suzie

LLB
Posts: 541
Joined: Thu Sep 06, 2007 9:10 pm

Re: Grants for University for those on SGO

Post by LLB » Fri Oct 14, 2011 7:46 am

Many thanks. I have emailed the local authority. The problem is that the deadline our grandson has been set for UCAS is today and we have already been given wrong information!

I have looked at your advice sheet and again at the legislation in the Children's Act 1989 and the legislation clearly states in subsection 1A that he is eligible.

After that subsection 1B below is referring to all those to whom subsection 1A does not apply. Then below subsection 1B it goes on to clarify what is in subsection 1B which we don't have to read because we reach the conditions in subsection 1A.

Hopefully I have read this right but maybe not!

User avatar
Suzie, FRG Adviser
Posts: 674
Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2011 11:25 am

Re: Grants for University for those on SGO

Post by Suzie, FRG Adviser » Fri Oct 14, 2011 9:04 am

do not satisfy the “edible” and “relevant” and “former relevant” categories
What I meant to say is “eligible” not “edible”-it was dinner time when I posted so I think I must have been hungry! I wasn't having a Hannibal Lecter moment as my colleaugue suggested!

Suzie

Post Reply