Bursaries and Scholarships are funded from either school revenue or from funds provided by the West Buckland School Foundation. The school accounts identify the sums expended on bursaries and scholarships, as well as other fee remissions (such as sibling discount and staff fee remission).
Scholarships from the Prep School
Scholarships are awarded from the Prep School into the Senior School at 11+. Unless a student’s performance or commitment deteriorates, a scholarship continues for the entire school career. Internal and external candidates may apply for scholarships. There are currently no scholarships available into the Prep School.
The maximum value of scholarships is currently 20% tuition fees, while others may be awarded at 10 or 15% of fees. It is envisaged that the value and number of scholarships will continue to be reduced in the next few years.
All bursaries are awarded only after parents have completed a confidential statement of financial circumstances. This will normally be accompanied by a letter giving supporting information about the family circumstances now as well as some indication of how these circumstances may develop in the future. Awards are made by the Headmaster after discussion with the parents.
Awards will usually be made with the expectation that this will be an agreement to facilitate continuity of education through to a ‘natural break point’ in education at age 11 or 16. However, all bursaries are subject to annual reassessment and families are required to submit a new statement of financial circumstances by May each year. Parents are expected to provide supporting documentation on request. Failure to do so may lead to the withdrawal of a bursary.
As the value of scholarships has been reduced in recent years, funds have been released to provide means tested bursaries. These are designed to provide financial assistance for families in a variety of situations.
(a) Entrance Bursaries.
These are awarded to families who would not otherwise be able to fund tuition fees for a child at West Buckland School. These awards are made on entry to the school. They may be made to children in either the Preparatory School or the Senior School. A bursary is designed to enable children at all ages and from a wide range of backgrounds to benefit from the opportunities available at West Buckland School. It is unlikely that a bursary will be awarded to a child entering Key Stage One.
The value of an ‘Entrance Bursary’ may be up to 95% tuition fees but does not include assistance with uniform, school meals or other matters.
(b) Continuation Bursaries.
These may be awarded to families who are encountering unexpected financial difficulties. These will usually be a consequence of loss of employment, illness or other unforeseeable circumstance. Where a family has been affected by divorce or break-up of a partnership, the school would not normally award a bursary unless the Headmaster was satisfied that all interested parties within the family were making a proper contribution to funding the continuing education of the pupil. These awards are usually for a limited period to enable the family to recover from the short term difficulties it is experiencing.
In some cases bursaries may be awarded to make provision for a family with several children to enable the parents to plan into the future and ensure continuity of education for each of them. In these situations, it is likely that any financial support will be targeted at the years when the financial pressure on the parents will be greatest. In these circumstances the parents will be required to submit a financial declaration.
Bursaries may be awarded by the school in conjunction with financial support provided by one of the educational trusts that exist for a variety of purposes. These include making provision for children with a ‘boarding need’, or for children with particular educational or personal needs that cannot be adequately met in the maintained sector. In these circumstances the school works closely with each trust according to its own policies. However, in each case there will be a financial assessment of the family situation as well as the needs of the child. When a trust provides support for a child, it is normally the case that the school will also make a substantial bursary award, usually between 25-50% tuition and boarding fees.