Education and Training Foundation Bursary Scheme

Supporting diverse, representative and talented leadership pipelines for the sector

The Foundation has a fund to support the professional development of underrepresented leaders, managers and those involved in governance within the education and training sector. This is part of our intention to promote a more diverse and representative leadership across the whole sector and to ensure that we recruit and retain talent to leadership roles. It is intended to be used to support individuals who feel that they face barriers and challenges to their professional development and progression, who feel that they have skills and abilities that would benefit from further development and who are prepared to act as a champion or role model to others. Leaders, managers and those involved in governance can apply to the Bursary Scheme for full or partial payment of course fees.

At the Foundation we define leadership as those who are already in senior leadership positions, managers and those involved in governance such as board members including clerks, and those who aspire to progress within those roles.


Applications for bursaries will only be considered for Education and Training Foundation funded learning and development opportunities that can be booked through the ELMAG (Excellence in Leadership, Management and Governance) portal. The Foundation is also keen to show that the allocation of bursaries has an impact on individual's development and progression, has positive benefits for the sector and therefore represents value for money.

Bursaries are to support individuals and will be applied in addition to any discounted rates that may apply to the course fees for which your organisation will be eligible.

Bursaries may be awarded to cover the cost of course fees (in full 100% of course fees or part up to 50% of course fees ) and are at the discretion of the Education and Training Foundation.

Bursaries will not be issued for travel and subsistence.

Applications from individuals will be considered on the following grounds:

Diversity and under-representation

The Foundation is keen to promote greater diversity in the education and training sector at all levels and in all parts of the sector across the nine protected characteristics (for more information, please see our Equality and Diversity strategy paper at We also know that there is under-representation and a lack of leadership role models in some curriculum areas, such as women in engineering, construction and technology, and men in care professions.

Redundancy or redeployment

In times of redundancy and cuts to staffing levels, the Foundation will consider applications for bursaries from individuals facing redundancy, and who wish to redeploy to an area where there is a skills shortage and difficulties in recruiting staff to certain positions. This could for example include leadership of delivery of maths and English, or Apprenticeships support.

Occupational Groups

Support for Clerks

The Foundation is keen to support the sector as it goes through the Area Reviews process. Through this process the Foundation acknowledges that the role of leaders, managers and those involved in governance will be critical. The role of clerks is central in providing support to the governing body/ corporation and promoting excellence in College governance.

The Foundation will:

  • consider applications for bursaries from clerks applying for ETF subsidised Clerks professional development programmes advertised on the ELMAG portal;
  • consider funding 50% of the course fees for clerks CPD programmes. There will be an initial allocation of 20 individual bursaries issued to clerks (any increase to the number of bursaries available will be made clear on the ELMAG portal).

When reviewing applications the Foundation will also base decisions on responses to how applicants expect to demonstrate impact and how they will use their learning to support colleagues in the sector.

As a condition of the Bursary Scheme successful applicants will be expected to record, demonstrate and communicate the impact of undertaking the learning and development opportunity for which they have received funding. This could include:

  • Acting as a mentor to others in the sector in a similar position, such as through the ELMAG Network (Excellence in Leadership, Management and Governance)
  • Initiating and contributing to professional debate and thought leadership through use of social media, forums and blogs etc. (ELMAG Network forums and conversations, Education and Training Foundation website, Society for Education and Training online communities)
  • Writing for our membership journal InTuition, our e-newsletter or the SET website
  • Providing a case study, blog or video of their experience.

To be considered for a bursary please complete the application form found here or go to the relevant course page.

Bursary application process:

  • Complete the application form. Please give yourself time to apply for a bursary before your course is due to start to allow time for your application to be processed. The Foundation will aim to make decisions on bursary applications within three working days.
  • Once the application has been completed the user will then click on 'Submit'
  • A completed form will then be sent to via email
  • The applicant will get an email acknowledging the receipt of the application.
  • Within three working days, if successful, the Bursary applicant will receive an email with a discount code appropriate for the level of bursary they have applied for and a prompt to apply for the course using this code. Unsuccessful applicants will receive feedback.
  • The booking system will then apply the bursary to the booking when and then fee (if any) can be paid by the course applicant.