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Fiscal facts of life for mature students

Training Bursaries: Postgraduate trainee teachers get a tax-free pound;6,000 sum, equivalent to pound;150 a week. The bursary comes in nine payments for those on full-time PGCEs and two payments of pound;3,000 to people on flexible PGCEs. Candidates accepted for the Fast Track scheme receive pound;5,000 (pound;3,000 at the start of training and pound;2,000 on taking up the first teaching post) on top of the PGCE bursary of pound;6,000.

Secondary Shortage Subject Scheme: There are some means-tested hardship awards of up to pound;500 available in England. You can apply for an award if you are studying one of the shortage subjects at secondary level: design and technology; geography; ICT; maths; RE; music; science; modern languages.

Dependant's grant: You are eligible if you are a full-time student aged under 55 with dependent children or adult dependants. You can get up to pound;2,225 a year for a first child or adult dependant; and then for children under 11, pound;465; children 11-15, pound;930; children 16-17, pound;1,240; and children 18 or over, pound;1,780.

Childcare, travel and other costs Details of the additional help available can be found in the guide published by the Department for Education and Skills, "Childcare Grant and other financial help for higher education students in 2002-03". This document can be obtained from the DfES information line: 0800 731 9133.

Employment Based Routes (RTP amp; GTP) Your school pays you a salary equivalent to the unqualified teacher rate of pound;12,891, and possibly more. You may also be eligible for further support such as the Repayment of Teachers' Loans scheme.

Golden Hellos Postgraduates teaching mathematics, science, English (including drama), modern languages, design and technology or information and communications technology are eligible for a taxable payment of pound;4,000. The so-called golden hello is only for those on PGCE or SCITT (schools-based training) courses. You can apply if you successfully complete induction within five years of the start of the first academic year after you gain qualified teacher status, and within 12 months of completing induction as long as you are working within the maintained sector.

Other useful contacts

DfES Student Support free information line: 0800 731 9133; Teaching Information Line 0845 6000 991, or 0845 6000 992 for Welsh speakers.

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