Applications open for Education Maintenance Allowance 2024/25

All eligible young people are being encouraged to apply for a weekly, term time allowance of £30 per week from August 2024.

The Highland Council administers Education Maintenance Allowance (EMA) in respect of eligible young people from across its 29 secondary schools. Colleges administer this scheme for their students.

During the last academic year, over 500 young people across Highland secondary schools benefited from approximately £420,000 from this Allowance. The Allowance provides an incentive for young people aged 16-19 from lower income families to continue with their post-16 education, either in school or college.

Eligibility for the scheme is based upon the total taxable household income for 2023/24:

  • up to £24,421 taxable income for households with 1 dependant child
  • up to £26,884 taxable income for households with 2 or more dependant children.

This weekly term time allowance is paid directly into the young person’s bank account and does not affect the child benefit or other benefits being paid to their parents or carers.

Orla MacLeod, Highland Youth Convener, said: “I would encourage all students who are eligible to claim their EMA as having it can really help take the pressure off when studying in 4th-6th year. The money you're entitled to will hopefully mean you don't need to work as many hours and instead can focus on your exams, coursework, and looking after yourself at a really full-on time in your education.”

Further information about Education Maintenance Allowance, including full eligibility criteria, is available on the Highland Council’s website at

The Council’s Welfare Support Team can complete the online application form with the young person and in the wider context, can support all eligible households to apply for benefits and other entitlements.

The Welfare Support Team can be contacted by telephoning 0800 090 1004 or emailing

13 Jun 2024