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Government Grants for Retraining

By: Paul Geraghty - Updated: 21 Jul 2016 | comments*Discuss
 
Government Grants For Retraining

The government now preaches constantly about the need for us to engage in “lifelong learning” to keep up with the changing demands of the modern world and participate in the “knowledge economy”. To help make the ideal a reality, a variety of financial assistance programmes are available to help you acquire new skills.

Redundancy-Related Retraining Help

If the redundancy is a large-scale one, the Jobcentre is sometimes able to deploy special help through its Rapid Response Service. The help is uniquely tailored to the requirements of each case and can sometimes include financial help to pay for new training.

Adult Learning Grant

The government offers an Adult Learning Grant (ALG) to contribute to the costs of courses (or expenses related to them) which will help you achieve new levels of qualification. This is a significant restriction which you should note. It means that you cannot get funding for ELQ or Equivalent Level Qualifications. For example, if you already have two good A-Levels in English and French and want to retrain for a career in IT by doing A-Levels in Maths and Computing, you would not be eligible for the ALG. The new qualification must constitute progress of some sort.

The Adult Learning Grant can pay out up to £30 per week depending on the overall financial circumstances of your household. It is only available for full-time training courses, and you may be ineligible for it if you are also receiving benefits such as Income Support.

Higher Education Grants

If you’re planning on going into higher education, government support comes in the form of maintenance grants, which are intended to help with your living expenses, and Student Loans, which can defray both your living expenses and your tuition costs at the institution of learning you attend. Grants do not have to be paid back; loans do. The interest charged on the loans is equivalent to the rate of inflation, however, so in real terms, the amount you pay back is exactly the amount you borrowed.

Professional and Career Development Loan

If grants aren’t available to fund the training you have in mind, consider a loan. The government supports something called Career Development Loans which can be used to help pay for job-related learning. The loan can pay either for the course fees itself, or related expenses, including living expenses, as long as they are not being supported by any other sources of public funds at the same time. Eligible training courses can last for up to two years, or three if they include a year of practical experience, and they must be offered by an organisation which appears on the official CDL register of learning providers.

You can borrow anything from £300 to £10,000. This should cover no more than 80% of your course fees, unless you have been unemployed for more than 3 months, in which case the loan can cover 100% of your course fees. Repayment must begin within one month of your course ending. The Young People's Learning Agency covers the interest payments on your behalf until then. It’s important to note that you must still repay the loan even if you don’t complete the training course for whatever reason, for example if you decide you don’t like it or your learning provider goes out of business.

Although Career Development Loans are supported by the government, they are actually administered by banks, so pop into your local bank if you want to learn more.

Government Retraining Grants – Conclusion

Few of us now have the luxury of going through life following only one career path. Periodic retraining in order to acquire new skills has become almost inevitable. Government financial assistance is available to help with some of the costs, but you will also often have to make a substantial commitment of your own.

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I am 23 and a mother to one. I have been doing some research into dog grooming and am wondering if I could get any funding for a course? I am hoping to go on and open up my own grooming salon. I have been out of work for 2 years and am a single parent claiming income support, what grant or finding would I be entitled to? I also live in Scotland of that makes a difference? Any advice would be great as I want to make something of myself.
GemmaW - 21-Jul-16 @ 11:21 PM
My husband is in the exact same position as scottycarts. Rapid response has said they only fund short courses and 14 weeks is too long. How quickly do they expect someone to retrain/upskill? Job centre has now recognised this company's exemployees as eligible for retraining funding but are only offering such courses as fork lift truck training. How is that a carear change? Please can you advise if there are any kind of grants or funding that might be available.
Shazza - 30-Jun-16 @ 12:19 AM
Hi just been made redundant with no notice period along with around 600 other people. Because of the swiftness of the administration and resulting closer of the business (5weeks in total). There was no job clubs or careers help during the administration. I have asked careers for help since my redundancy in training courses but they tell me that i can only upskill. This isnt an option as i have the highest qualification in the industry and worked at the largest printing plant in europe which paid the highest wages in britian and it closed in 5 weeks notice. The future of print is on the decline and jobs in the area for print are very limited. I have found a course with a job upon completion but getting no positive info back from careers service the course is in a sector with large growth and a shortfall of workers. Any advice would be grateful. Many thanks
Scottycarts - 7-Jun-16 @ 7:45 PM
Im thinking of doing a tiling courese I currently recieve esa is there any goverment funds that could help me pay for it?
Div - 16-May-16 @ 10:37 AM
Hi I'm 32 and a mum of 4 I have been in and out of retail work most my adult life but for the last 3 years I have been doing some dog walking and recently started doing some puppy classes at my local vets. I would love to train as a dog trainer behaviourist could I get any financial help to fund the courses
Loraell84 - 28-Apr-16 @ 4:48 PM
digger - Your Question:
Hi I'm a 53 year old male who use to work for the council and had to go and have an eye operation and while I was on the sick the council advertised my job I was only on sick for 4 weeks then I was ready to go back to work but things got worse for me my wife died and I had another 5 operation after that so I was on the sick for about 2/3 years so I got my self ready to back to work so walked about 7 miles to see my supervisor about starting work and he recon that I didnt want to work so they turminated my contract there and then. So I went to see my doctor and they put me back on sick with depresion because of every thing I went throu then I was one ESA for a while then the council evicted me from the bunglow about 12 month ago and I have been living in a caravan since then looking for work and not getting any benefit. I use to be a machine operator and I use to drive a 7.5 lorry now all my licences have expired so how can somebody like me get work now if I cant afford all the cost to get my licenses back so I can get work if I had them back I would get work straight away can somebody help me get back to work so I can start living again.

Our Response:
You don't say whether you are eligible for benefits, if so this would be your first priority and at the same time you would be helped to get back into work and/or given guidance on what grants may be available. It may at first not be the type of job you have been trained for, but by working and earning you would be able to save to apply for your licences again. Your first port of call should be JobCentre Plus as their advisers may be able to help point you in the right direction.
RedundancyExpert - 1-Apr-16 @ 11:05 AM
Hi I'm a 53 year old male who use to work for the council and had to go and have an eye operation and while i was on the sick the council advertised my job i was only on sick for 4 weeks then i was ready to go back to work but things got worse for me my wife died and i had another 5 operation after that so i was on the sick for about 2/3 years so i got my self ready to back to work so walked about 7 miles to see my supervisor about starting work and he recon that i didnt want to work so they turminated my contract there and then. So i went to see my doctor and they put me back on sick with depresion because of every thing i went throu then i was one ESA for a while then the council evicted me from the bunglow about 12 month ago and i have been living in a caravan since then looking for work and not getting any benefit. I use to be a machine operator and i use to drive a 7.5 lorry now all my licences have expired so how can somebody like me get work now if i cant afford all the cost to get my licenses back so i can get work if i had them back i would get work straight away can somebody help me get back to work so i can start living again.
digger - 31-Mar-16 @ 11:39 AM
Hi what help can I get to retrain into plant 360 above and below 10 tonne
Big jonny - 11-Mar-16 @ 2:55 PM
I would like to get my pcv trainingfund to help pay for cost of the course I need help thanks Ahmed.
none - 6-Mar-16 @ 11:45 PM
I have just been made redundant. I have been offered a job as a class 1 hgv driver if I pass my test. I've been told it would cost £3000. Is there any help financially as I don't have a spare £3000. What advise could you offer
Jimmy - 6-Feb-16 @ 9:18 PM
forky1 - Your Question:
I have been made redundant recently, but have been offered a job if I have a fork lift and first aid qualifications. I got no pay out from the redundancy as was only with the company 6 months. Is there any funding to gain these qualifications? Thanks

Our Response:
You would have to find out via your JobCentre Plus to see if there was anything available through the government.
RedundancyExpert - 20-Jan-16 @ 1:55 PM
I have been made redundant recently, but have been offered a job if I have a fork lift and first aid qualifications. I got no pay out from the redundancy as was only with the company 6 months. Is there any funding to gain these qualifications? Thanks
forky1 - 19-Jan-16 @ 9:02 PM
Kie008 - Your Question:
Hi I work full time but have bills to pay im wanting to sit my hgv test to expend my career but trying to save is a nightmare as a bill or something always pops up unexpected is there any help out there any advice would be much appreciated

Our Response:
With regards to HGV training, there are various options. You could in the first instance contact your local Job Centre Plus, as they may have some training grants on offer, or could point you in the right direction. You may also be able to take out a Government backed loan, please see National Careers link here. You could also approach your bank for a professional and Career Development Loan. I hope this helps.
RedundancyExpert - 14-Jan-16 @ 11:16 AM
Hi i work full time but have bills to pay im wanting to sit my hgv test to expend my career but trying to save is a nightmare as a bill or something always pops up unexpected is there any help out there any advice would be much appreciated
Kie008 - 13-Jan-16 @ 4:11 PM
I have been laid of from work in the building trade. Is there any chance of getting funding, so I can do SMSTS course (site management safety training scheme) so I can full time permanent job.
Rabbit - 29-Dec-15 @ 2:03 PM
Hi I'm looking into doing me 360 excavator ticket to help my career and get new skills to enhance my job roles is there any help I could get with this ?
Dalejasper - 4-Dec-15 @ 2:29 PM
Can I get funding please to do my HGV so I can get a job please
psm - 3-Nov-15 @ 10:57 AM
Mike31 - Your Question:
I would like to get my telescopic handler training can I get funds to help pay for the cost of the course I need help thanks Mike.

Our Response:
You can check if there is funding available and seek advice through the National Careers website here. I hope this helps.
RedundancyExpert - 23-Oct-15 @ 2:12 PM
I would like to get my telescopic handler training can I get funds to help pay for the cost of the course I need help thanks Mike.
Mike31 - 22-Oct-15 @ 7:00 PM
bigesther15 - Your Question:
I have taken voluntary redundancy from work due to a restructure at work.12 members of staff are losing there jobs.i am a single parent of a 6yr old.im thinking of setting up my own business in catering is there any kind of help for me.can I claim any benefits!

Our Response:
Please see gov.uk site: 'Start your own Business', link here. I hope this helps.
RedundancyExpert - 8-Oct-15 @ 2:30 PM
I have taken voluntary redundancy from work due to a restructure at work.12 members of staff are losing there jobs.i am a single parent of a 6yr old.im thinking of setting up my own business in catering is there any kind of help for me ..can i claim any benefits!
bigesther15 - 8-Oct-15 @ 5:38 AM
WAYNE, don't give up on it, biggest regret I ever have is doing the same.
muskoka62 - 3-Oct-15 @ 10:52 AM
MissT2 - Your Question:
I am in a similar boat to Miss T. What help is there for those made redundant and wish to retrain yet have a mortgage (albeit a low one at the moment) to pay and bills?I would like to go onto degree level as few employers are interested unless you have a minimum of a degree level education these days.MissT2

Our Response:
You could, of course, apply for a student loan. However, you’ll only get student finance if you’re doing your first higher education qualification. You can use the student finance calculator via the link hereto see what finance and extra help you can get. I hope this helps.
RedundancyExpert - 21-Sep-15 @ 11:43 AM
I am in a similar situation as Miss T.However I could not see a response. I am a lone parent (of 16 yr old) and about to be made redundant. I wish to go into full time education at degree or similar level as this is what employees are after these days. However our home has a mortgage on it.Moving is not an option. My daughter will be entering college next year. What is available to help with costs? Again, I would be grateful for some advice
MissT2 - 20-Sep-15 @ 11:42 AM
I am in a similar boat to Miss T.What help is there for those made redundant and wish to retrain yet have a mortgage (albeit a low one at the moment) to pay and bills? I would like to go onto degree level as few employers are interested unless you have a minimum of a degree level education these days. MissT2
MissT2 - 20-Sep-15 @ 11:37 AM
I am being made redundant in 2 weeks. Looking to change my career in to dog grooming the course i'm looking at is £3,000 in Bedfordshire. Is there any grants available for me to apply for? Unfortunately the local colleges and uni do not have any course of this type. So I am having to look City & Guild Course via Academy. Many thanks in advance
CAyling - 23-Aug-15 @ 1:24 PM
If you are over 24 stay away from any training that includes having to do an apprentiship. The way the apprentiship system is set out discriminates against mature students making employers not be able to afford taking on the student or not want to as it will cost them money. This is because if they take on a 16 -24 year old they get grants to cover the apprentices wages of which they only have to pay them £2.78 an hour and the government pays for all the college fees. But if they take on some one over 24 there is no grant to cover the wages and after 1 year they cant pay any less than the minimum wage for the age group of the apprentice which for over 25s is going up to over £7 an hour next year. Also it is normally down to the employer to pay for the cost of training an older student. I have just finished doing my level 2 course to become an electrician and need to do level 3 and an apprentiship and even thoe I have told companies that I am willing to pay for my own college fees and training no one is willing to even consider giving me a chance because they will have to pay me a minimum wage. So I am going to have to give it up and go back to van driving.
wayne - 3-Aug-15 @ 5:22 PM
I am going to be unemployed in the next week having been self employed for the last 9 hears subcontracting to one company. Would I be able to apply for a grant to do my hgv class 1 and 2
Stu - 22-Jul-15 @ 11:47 AM
Hi my husband had cancer, luckily he survived but become unable to work. Now I want learn "driving Instructor" program that cost around $2800 cd. OSAP doesn't cover this peogram. Do anybody know any other helpful source that can help me for my tuition fee?
Kame - 9-Jul-15 @ 11:21 PM
@armish - I have included a link to our partner site An Apprentice and the article Health and Safety for Apprentices, link here which means you could earn a small wage while working/studying. You would have to do an online search for university courses on the subject. However, you would have to pay back and student loans and tuition fees if you took this route.
RedundancyExpert - 1-Jul-15 @ 2:25 PM
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