From education to employment

Ruth Kelly Encourages Young People to Apply if Eligible

Secretary of State for Educations Ruth Kelly is encouraging eligible young people in Lancashire to apply for an Education Marketing Allowance (EMA). Approximately 9,000 students in Lancashire are amongst the 295,000 students who receive EMAs to aid their education and development.

The EMA is a financial incentive paid to young people who continue to study after 16. Many of these young people are on courses ranging from A-levels, vocational courses or GSCE retakes.

Providing Opportunities

“EMA is about providing opportunities, increasing participation in further education and reducing the number of 16-year olds who drop out, become unemployed or enter into low paying jobs,” Kelly said.

To be eligible, students must turn 17 or 18 during the academic year and be from households whose income amounts to up to £30,000 per year. Eligible students will receive payments ranging from £10 to £30 a week, which is paid directly into their bank accounts if they display regular attendance and commitment to their courses.

“We are extremely pleased with the hundreds of thousands of students who signed up to the scheme in the first year, many of whom wouldn”t have had the chance to continue studying after their GSCEs,” Kelly said.

EMA Brings 35,000 into Further Education

Last year, the EMA scheme encouraged an estimated 35,000 young people to participate in further education, many of whom would not have done so without the program. It also helped thousands of students concentrate on their studies by reducing their reliance on part-time work.

“Completing a course and gaining qualifications is an important way of getting ahead in life,” said Steve Palmer, Executive Director of the Learning Skills Council (LSC) in Lancashire.

Kate Watkins

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