What does Socially Disadvantaged circumstances mean when applying for a funded Pre-School place?
Legislation requires pre-school providers to give priority to children in their final pre-school year (target age) who are from socially disadvantaged circumstances.
The Department of Education has defined socially disadvantaged circumstances as applying to a child whose parent is in receipt of any of the following benefits:-
- (i) Income Support;
- (ii) Income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance;
- (iii) An award of Income Support which has been converted into an Employment and Support Allowance and the level of benefit remains the same; or
- (iv) Universal Credit.
If you are in receipt of any of these benefits you must provide verification.
I am making application for a Pre-School place, how can I get my benefit verified if I am claiming socially disadvantaged circumstances?
If you are in receipt of Universal Credit (UC) you must provide your current online Universal Credit (UC) statement (Payments Screen) showing you are in receipt of UC. You can provide this with your application when you send it directly to the Pre-School provider.
If you are in receipt of Income Support or Income-based Jobseeker's Allowance or an award of Income Support which has been converted into ESA and the level of benefit remains the same the Department for Communities (DfC) and the Education Authority (EA) have put in place arrangements for verifying your benefit in order to adhere with the PHA guidance during the COVID-19 situation. You should complete the benefit verification form below and submit. The EA will contact the Pre-School preference you have listed on your benefit verification form when DfC provide verification. We will also provide you with the Benefit Verification received so that you can provide to any other pre-schools who are participating in the Pre-School Education Programme that you may approach for a funded pre-school place. We will also contact you if DfC are unable to verify your benefit.
If you need help contact Admissions Helpdesk 028 9598 5595 (Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm).