Son on ESA but wants to go to college? — Scope | Disability forum

Son on ESA but wants to go to college?

denstar62 Member Posts: 1 Listener
edited August 2017 in Education
Hi, my son is 20 and is on ESA for anxiety issues. He now feels ready to go to college but as he is of an age to have to pay I was wondering if anyone knows whether he can get any help with the cost


  • Geoark
    Geoark Member, Scope Volunteer Posts: 1,384 Disability Gamechanger
    He could be eligible for an Advance Learners Loan. How much he would get would depend on what course/s he is planning to do.

    You can find out more at

    As far as I can work out it is run the same way as loans for university students. So he won't have to pay it back until he is earning more than £21,000 pa. Interest rate will be added.

    Also if he leaves the course 2 weeks after the beginning or later he will still need to pay back what ever loan he was given, plus interest. It is unlikely the loans would be as much as they are for university students.

    If your son is planning to do an Access course to Higher education the Advanced Learners Loan will be written off when he starts an eligible HE course.

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  • Nystagmite
    Nystagmite Member Posts: 596 Pioneering
    If he's on income based ESA, the course might be free or could be reduced. If he doesn't already have a level 3 qualification, he may not have to pay.
  • jae377
    jae377 Member Posts: 27 Courageous
    My son was on income based ESA. When assessing for ESA they accepted the medical pension that I receive specifically for my increased personal living costs should not count towards disposable income.
    Bad news is that is not the case with Uni Funding. Trying to explain to a Scottish Company (where all education including Uni is free) why this was unfair was like talking to a brick wall. However 10 out of 10 to Cardiff Uni who gave money from a discretionary fund so my son could have his chance. He now has an honours degree !!
  • poppy123456
    poppy123456 Member Posts: 29,767 Disability Gamechanger
    If he's claiming Income related ESA then any loans or grants he receives, if he attends college could affect his ESA, all changes must be reported.