Students Who are Parents

We aim to help students who are parents as much as possible, the information below should help answer some of your queries.

Child Care

If you have children under 15, you may be eligible for up to 85% of your actual childcare costs throughout the whole year:

Day nurseries provide care and a space to play and learn in groups for children under 5, though some nurseries cater for slightly older children. Day nurseries are open all day but not evenings or weekends. OFSTED registration is compulsory and all nurseries must be registered with their local authority. They are inspected by OFSTED (the Office for Standards in Education) every three to four years.

  • Child minders ‐ self‐employed child carers who are Ofsted registered. They will look after your child in their own home. Age restrictions and opening hours can vary and should be checked with the individual child minder.
  • Playgroups ‐ sessional play work, usually of about three hours duration, catering for children of ages 2 to 5. Again, Ofsted registration is compulsory.
  • Nursery classes/pre‐school ‐ sessional or all day care for pre‐school children. These facilities are usually open during school hours, but in term time only. Ofsted registration is compulsory.
  • Crèches ‐ occasional care for children under 8 years. Ofsted registration is compulsory.
  • Out of school clubs ‐ play and care for school age children before and/or after school hours. Ofsted registration is compulsory if catering for children under 8 years.
  • Babysitters ‐ care for your child in your own home. Flexible hours are usually available. Babysitters are not legally required to have qualifications, training, Criminal Records. Bureau checks or Ofsted registration. Parents or carers are responsible for checking all claimed registrations and references.


You may be eligible for different types of funding.

  • Parents' Learning Allowance - For help with course‐related costs for students with dependent children.
  • Housing Benefit - For lone parents, disabled people who qualify for Disability Premium or Severe Disability Premium, disabled people who receive Disabled Students Allowance and people aged over 60.
  • Income Support - For lone parents, disabled people who qualify for Disability Premium or Severe Disability Premium, disabled people who receive Disabled Students Allowance. You may also qualify if you are on a low income and your partner is on maternity or paternity leave.
  • The Childcare Grant - This grant is available for students who have dependent children and a low household income. If you have children under 15, the grant pays up to 85% of your actual childcare costs throughout the whole year.
  • Child Benefit - You normally qualify for Child Benefit if you have children under the age of 16 (or under 20 and in relevant education or training) and you live in the UK.
  • Child Tax Credit -To help with the costs of raising children.
  • Universal Credit - This is a new benefit that has started to replace several existing benefits with a single monthly payment into your account. The rollout began in 2013 and it is hoped that it will have national coverage by 2016. New claims to existing benefits, which Universal Credit is replacing, will then close down, with the vast majority of claimants moving onto Universal Credit during 2016 and 2017.

Schools in Derby

Children aged 5 to 16 must be in compulsory education. The academic year for schools runs from September to July and attendance is compulsory. Children aged 5 to 11 attend primary schools (years one to six), and those aged 11 to 16 attend secondary schools (years seven to eleven).

After 16, young people can continue to study AS and A levels or vocational qualifications (such as NVQs). These studies usually take place in 'sixth form colleges', within schools or in Further Education (FE) Colleges.

Download guides to primary and secondary education in Derby, including admissions procedures and a list of schools.

Applications made prior to arrival in Derby will be accepted but most schools allocate places based on the distance between the school and the home address.

A local address needs to be secured before an application will be processed. Home addresses must be verified by a document such as a council tax bill or tenancy agreement. Submit the application in advance with an explanation that you will be moving into the area. Confirm your local address to the School Admissions Team as soon as possible on arrival.

In addition to the guidelines above, international parents or carers should note that allocation to year groups is automatically based upon age rather than prior learning.

Some schools may wish to assess children from abroad who have been following a different educational curriculum and syllabus. At secondary level this may result in children needing to enter lower year groups in some subjects in order to avoid being disadvantaged.

Most parents choose a school for their child within walking distance of their home.

The walking distance is given in law as: two miles for children under eight years old, three miles for children aged eight and over. However, if your child is eligible for Free School Meals, or you are in receipt of the maximum level of Working Tax Credit, the walking distance will remain at two miles until your child moves to Secondary School. Proof of these benefits will be required. In these instances the Council may provide you with a free bus pass or refund the cost of transporting your child to school

If your child is attending school full-time, but has no school within walking distance of your home which we can arrange for them to attend, the Council help with transport to the nearest suitable school, excluding nursery schools. They will give this help up to the end of compulsory school age - this is the end of the school year in which your child reaches the age of 16.

Services for mothers who breastfeed

Mothers of young babies who need to express milk or breast feed their child on campus can do so by going to the nurses’ rooms in T Block at Kedleston Road or the Student Wellbeing Service in the Devonshire in Buxton.

The nurses will allow you to store your milk in a labelled bottle in their fridge to be collected by the end of the working day.