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Leaving care

The Pathway team

The Pathway team provides support and assistance to all 'Looked After' young people and care leavers from the age of 16 onwards. The team will support you until at least the age of 21 (and up to 24 if you are still in education at the age of 21). The local authority has a legal duty to provide support as described in the 'Children (Leaving Care) Act 2000'.

The aim of the service is to make sure you have all the support you need to prepare for independent living, and that this doesn't happen until you are ready to move on. (This usually happens after the age of 18). The team helps you with your plans for education and training, accommodation and support, finances, contact with family and carers, and all other aspects of independent living skills.

Pathway plans

All looked after young people from the age of 16 will have what is called a 'Pathway plan'. This details what support you will receive and from whom, what finances are available and how you will receive them. The plan is drawn up and agreed with you, and its purpose is to make it clear what help you will get and how.


Some young people may wish to remain with their foster carers after they reach the age of 18 - and this is then 'converted' into a supported lodgings arrangement. Others may move into their own rented flat - either with the Council, or private. Some young people access other supported living arrangements (such as supported lodgings placements, or semi-independent hostels etc.) All options are discussed in advance with the young person and their carers, and plans drawn up.

Education and training

The Pathway team aims to help all looked after young people reach their goals and aspirations. It is seen as a priority that you are given every chance to access further / higher education and training - including opportunities for training and employment within the local authority. 

Further education and training

If you are in care, or a care leaver, and stay on in full-time education beyond age 16, you can apply for a guaranteed bursary of £1,200 a year.

You must be over 16 and under 19 on August 31st in the academic year in which you start your study. If you turn 19 during your course, you can continue to be supported to the end of that academic year or to the end of the course - which ever is soonest.

Part time learners and those undertaking courses that last less than 30 weeks should be considered for pro-rata payments.

East Riding Adult Education has a small allocation for 16-18 year olds and may have bursary funds, which could be used to support care leavers if they were to enrol on a programme.

Young people receiving a bursary usually receive a payment for each full week attended in term-time, but some may be paid monthly.

You will need to apply directly to your chosen school, academy, college or training provider for support from the scheme, and you will have to provide evidence from East Riding of Yorkshire Council that you are looked after or a care leaver. This will be provided by your Pathway worker, who will also help with the application process (contact them on (01482) 396666).

The Pathway team will also support you with any queries on courses or help with additional items you may need etc. You can also see their targeted youth support worker (formerly Connexions) for advice on careers, jobs and further training. They also run training events (such as 'How to get a job and keep it') on applying for jobs, preparing for interviews - and provide a mentoring scheme.

Young people who receive a bursary have a responsibility to ensure excellent attendance and behaviour to continue to receive the bursary. Poor attendance or behaviour may result in the bursary being withdrawn.

Young people who receive a bursary have a responsibility to ensure excellent attendance and behaviour to continue to receive the bursary. Poor attendance or behaviour may result in the bursary being withdrawn.

Visit Log on move on where you will find a list of the schools, colleges and training providers in the area.

Higher education

If you are thinking of going to University, the Pathway team can help you with applying, and attending open days at local universities etc. The team will also help you to make your application for student grants and loans. Did you know that as a care leaver you can often access additional grants and bursaries from the university? You will also receive a weekly allowance from the Pathway team, and help with your vacation accommodation. You will also receive a 'Care Matters' bursary from the team, which is a total of £2000 across the duration of the course. Your Pathway team worker will be able to help with any queries about university, and the support you can get.

If you want to know more about any aspect of education and training and the support available then just speak to your Pathway worker, or ring the Pathway team on (01482) 396666 as we want to help!

Factsheet on financial support for post 16 education

Service user involvement

The Pathway team has an active Focus group - run by and for young people. This group is consulted on service development, runs regular groups and activities for young people, and offers us useful feedback on how we are doing. We put a strong emphasis on young people being fully involved in our work, and we are always looking to improve this aspect of what we do.