Bursaries may be awarded to candidates whose
parent(s) may be in need of financial assistance (see the schools
Bursary Policy for further information). A Bursary Form is
available from the school bursar.
The Governors of Westbourne School are committed to
broadening access to the school by offering to eligible
parents/guardians means-tested financial support with the payment
of schools fees. Such support is known as a Bursary and these may
be awarded in the form of a discount of up to 100% on tuition fees
payable, depending on the financial, compassionate or other
pertinent circumstances of applicants.
Bursary awards are subject to repeat
testing of parental means each year and may be varied upwards or
downwards, depending on parental circumstances. Awards are made on
the basis of the Westbourne School Scale of Awards, which sets out
award levels in relation to a family's financial circumstances. The
Scale of Awards is reviewed and revised annually by the Bursar and
the Headmaster to reflect any changes in fee costs, and approved by
the Governors. Though awards are generally tied to this scale, they
may be varied upwards or downwards depending on individual
parents/guardians' circumstances (e.g. their savings, investments
and realisable assets, as well as their income, the size of their
family, any other persons dependent upon them and like factors),
compassionate or other pertinent considerations.
Requests for financial support usually
fall into two categories:
- New applicants to the school, where a place has been
offered but parents/guardians are unable to fund the tuition
- Existing pupils where a change in parents/guardians'
circumstances has resulted in difficulty in meeting tuition fees
and may result in the child being withdrawn part way through a
stage of education.
New Applicants to the School
Awareness. Information provided by the School
alerting the parents/guardians of potential pupils to the
possibility of gaining means-tested financial support with the
payment of schools fees is included in:
- The School prospectus. Schools may wish to include the
actual application form for financial assistance in with the
- The School website.
- The local press by means of advertisements.
The Application Process
Bursaries may be made available to parents/guardians of
children entering any year group of Westbourne School. (See the
School's Admission's Policy). They are awarded at the discretion of
the Governors and the Head and School Bursar are responsible for
the management and coordination of the process.
- Step One. Parents/guardians seeking a
bursary are required to complete an application form which seeks to
establish the financial circumstances of the household. The form,
which requests details of income and capital, may be found at Annex
A and must be accompanied by full documentary evidence. The
completed forms, together with the necessary documentary evidence,
are to be submitted to the Bursar.
- Step Two. The Bursar assesses all
applications in order to establish the likely level of support
which will be required in order to allow the child to attend the
School. This may involve the Bursar, or his representative,
visiting the parents/guardians' home to ensure the information has
been correctly interpreted and the basis of the financial
assessment has been fair.
- Step Three. The Bursar prepares a
recommendation in accordance with the Westbourne School Scale of
Awards which is considered with the Head and a joint recommendation
is then reached.
- Step Four. The joint recommendation is
presented to the Finance Committee for approval.
- Step Five. The parents/guardians are advised
whether their child is to be offered a place at the School and of
the Bursary offer.
- Step Six. Parents/guardians are then
required to sign a letter accepting the place at the school and an
acknowledgement agreeing to any conditions relating to the
The Case for Assistance
The Head and Bursar will consider a number of factors when
making the judgement as to the justification for support, and the
extent of such support. In the main, the child's suitability for
the school is the first consideration in granting
- Suitability. In assessing a child's
suitability, attention will be given to the academic assessment
result of each applicant, but potential will also be considered as
well as actual achievement. Bursary funds are limited and those
judged most suitable will be given priority as those likely to gain
most from the educational provision. Each pupil to whom support is
offered must, in the opinion of the Head, be likely to make sound
academic progress following admission and possess the potential to
develop the quality of his or her work, and benefit from
participation in the wider, extra-curricular activities on offer at
the School. In normal circumstances, each applicant should meet the
School's normal academic requirements. Previous school reports will
be consulted for evidence of good behaviour.
- Financial Limitations. The amount of the
bursary award is not influenced by the level of the academic
ability of the child but by the extent of need. Each case is
assessed on its own merits and awards are made accordingly, subject
to the School's ability to fund these within the context of what is
viable within the context of its overall budget. It is recognised
that judgements about what sacrifices a family should make to pay
school fees will be personal. However, the School has a duty to
ensure that all bursary grants are well focussed and so, as well as
current earnings, other factors which will be considered in
determining the necessary level of grant will include:
- The ability to improve the financial position or earning
power of the family. For example, where there are two partners,
both would be expected to be employed unless one is prevented from
doing so through incapacity, the need to care for children under
school age or other dependents, or the requirements of their
- Opportunities to release any capital. Significant capital
savings and investments would be expected to be used for the
payment of school fees, as would equity values in
- In cases of separation, the contribution made by the
- Contribution to household costs by other, wider, family
members, any adults unrelated to the child or by outside
- Where fees are being paid to other schools (or
universities) the School's grant will take into account all these
- Acknowledging that others might have a different view,
the School considers that the following would not be consistent
with the receipt of a bursary:
- Frequent or expensive holidays.
- New or luxury cars.
- Investment in significant home improvements.
- A second property/land holdings.
- Other Factors. It is recognised that, in
addition to academic ability and financial constraints, there may
be other circumstances which should be considered. These
- Where a child has siblings at the School.
- Where the social needs of the child are relevant (eg: may
be suffering from bullying at their present school).
- Where a parent/guardian is terminally ill or is unable to
secure permanent employment due to poor health.
- Where a separation has resulted in the child having to be
withdrawn from the School adding to the stress of coping with the
Existing Pupils - Change in Family
Within overall budget funding, the School will in normal
circumstances set aside each year a Hardship Fund, for cases of
sudden, unforeseen need or where applications meriting bursary
assistance are received out of the normal calendar cycle for
bursary submission, scrutiny and award. This sum will be set within
budgetary constraints. Parents/guardians with a child at the School
whose financial circumstances suddenly change may apply for a
bursary to the Head, explaining their situation and using the forms
at Annex A. Such awards are subject to the availability of funding
and cannot be guaranteed.
All bursary awards are subject to repeat testing of
parental means each year and may be varied upwards or downwards
depending on parental circumstances. Current bursary holders will
be issued with repeat means-testing forms before the end of April
of each year for return by the end of May. For those previously in
receipt of bursaries, the Head and Bursar, in making their joint
recommendation to the Finance Committee, have the discretion to
recommend to the Governors the reduction or withdrawal of an award
not only where a pupil's progress, attitude or behaviour has been
unsatisfactory but also where the parents/guardians have failed to
support the school, for example by the late payment of any
contribution they are making to the fees.
The school encourages all pupils to benefit from the extra
curricula activities which take place. However, it would not
be considered appropriate for a pupil to go on an expensive school
trip, mostly overseas trips and Rua Fiola, if they are in receipt
of a significant bursary.
The School respects the confidentiality of bursary awards
made to families and recipients are expected to do
Other Sources of Bursary Assistance
In addition to the School's bursary Fund, there are a
number of educational and charitable trusts which provide
assistance with tuition fees. In the majority of cases, these are
to assist children who are already attending a fee-paying school
and due to a change of circumstances may be unable to remain.
Westbourne School encourages parents/guardians to apply for support
where it is felt a good case can be made for assistance. Further
information on how to pursue such assistance may be obtained
60 Westbourne Road, Sheffield S10 2QT
The Educational Trusts Forum and also The Joint
6 Lovat Lane
London EC3R 8DT