Cash help to keep young people in education
Young people in Tower Hamlets can apply for £400
each from tomorrow (Tuesday, October 1) as this year’s Mayor’s
Education Award (MEA) gets underway.
Now in its third year, the MEA helps students from poorer
backgrounds stay in education after their GCSEs. Successful
applicants will receive £400 a year to help towards the costs of
studying, for items such as books, travel or for field trips.
The council expects to fund all eligible students so is
encouraging as many students as possible to apply.
Mayor of Tower Hamlets Lutfur Rahman said: “No student should be
unable to fulfil their potential because of a financial
“Young people tell me that they would have been forced to walk
away from education if it hadn’t been for the MEA. I don’t want
anyone to slip through the net like this, which is why I am proud
that Tower Hamlets Council is once again offering this vital
The MEA was launched in 2011 to replace the support that had
previously been provided through the Education Maintenance
Allowance (EMA), which was scrapped by the coalition
The MEA has become so successful that it inspired a sister
scheme aimed at helping local students studying at university. The
Mayor’s Higher Education Award was launched in July and has proved
similarly popular, with hundreds of young people from Tower Hamlets
applying for the bursaries.
Applications for the original scheme, the MEA, formally open
tomorrow at 9am. Any applications already submitted will be
Cllr Oliur Rahman, the cabinet member for children, schools and
families, urged school leavers to apply.
He said: “I don’t want any young person to miss out on this
money because they didn’t get round to filling out a form.
“This money can mean the difference between someone dropping out
of education forever – or going on to improve their life
“Please, if you think you are eligible, take the time to fill
out a form or contact us for more information.”
The money, which is dependent on the applicant attending all
their lessons, will be paid in two installments of £200 and because
it is a grant, there is no need for any of it to be paid back.
There are various criteria which applicants must fulfil,
including being between 16 and 19 on September 1, having lived in
Tower Hamlets for at least three years and whose household income
is less than £20,817.
Students are being advised to get their applications in as soon
as possible. An application must be received within three months
from your date of enrolment and must be made before the end of the
Students enrolling in schools or colleges after this date must
apply within three months from the date of enrolment and must apply
before August 31, 2014.
For full details, frequently asked questions and to apply, visit
or ring the Tower Hamlets Council benefits team, which coordinates
the MEA, on 0207 364 5001.
September 30, 2013