Education Maintenance Allowance

You could get financial support to stay on at school if you are from a low income household and meet certain criteria. This is called an Education Maintenance Allowance (EMA).


Applications for the current academic year 2023/24 ending 1 July 2024 are now closed.

EMA is a means tested weekly allowance of £30, payable to students aged 16 to 19 in most circumstances for a maximum of 3 years. Students must achieve 100% attendance per week of the agreed attendance within their EMA Learning Agreement completed at school level. 

EMA is payable in arrears, during term time only, generally on a 2-weekly basis.  No payments are made for school holidays.  Students can apply if they attend a school in Dumfries and Galloway or have a history of being Home Educated, attend a Young Persons Activity with Employability and Skills D&G Council or travel daily to a Cross Border facility.   

Students who plan to attend a College in Scotland should apply for EMA to the college direct

Students will be asked to complete and return a Learning Agreement if their application is successful so that payments can start.  Successful students will receive an award letter by email to their School Glow email account or if they do not attend a school it will be sent to their personal email as stated on their application.  


Your household income for the year ended 5 April 2023 (2022/2023) must be less than (subject to change):

  • £24,421 - for households with one dependent child
  • £26,884 - for households with two or more dependent children


You must apply and reapply each academic year.  Applications for this academic session will not be accepted after 31 March 2024. There are deadlines that may affect payments in regard to the return of an application or a learning agreement please refer to the guidance document or contact us.

The application process is now online.  Please read the EMA guidance notes first.  If you don't have access to a PC or mobile device with an internet connection, please contact us direct for advice on how we can help.

If you do not have the relevant Tax Award and are in receipt of a benefit other than Universal Credit , please print and arrange completion and return of Part C - Certificate of Benefits received found below.

If you do not have the relevant Tax Award/Universal Credit Award or your SA302 for self-employment, please print and arrange completion and return of Part B - Accountants Certificate found below.

Once your online form has been submitted successfully, you will receive an email asking to email all supportive financial information to

Please clearly state the Students Name, Date of Birth and Learning Centre to enable us to match it to the appropriate form.  If you unable to do this the school should be able to help you with this further or contact direct.   Do not delay applying online even if your financial documents may not be available.   

Deadlines apply to EMA and can affect payments.

Apply for EMA

Further information

If you experience any other issues or require further help or advice, please firstly email or call 030 33 33 3000 and ask to speak to the Education Support team in regard to EMA.

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Further information can be found under Education Maintenance Allowance at

Page last updated: 09/04/2024
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