MOD Education Allowances
Joint Service Publications (JSPs) are rules and regulations for the Armed Forces. They are numbered and available on the defence intranet (Dii) for all soldiers to access.
Certain ones directly affect families including JSP 752 that deals will allowances; chapter four deals with School Children’s Visits and chapter nine deals with education allowances.
It is updated nearly every month, so make sure that you have a copy of the most up to date version when referring to it.
Quick guide to education allowances
Continuity of Education Allowance (CEA) – what is the process?
What is SENA and who can claim it?
CEA (Guardians) Allowance
Day School Allowance (North Wales)
School Children’s Visits (SCV)
Soldiers can apply for a number of allowances to support their children in education. Not all families will be eligible for all the allowances listed as some have certain requirements, such as accompanied Service, that may not apply to you. The main ones are listed here. Read more
|Allowance name||What is it?|
|CEA||Continuity of Education Allowance supports accompanied, mobile soldiers with fees for boarding school to allow a continuous education.|
|SENA||Special Educational Needs Addition contributes to the extra costs involved when you have a child with special educational needs.|
|CEA (GUARDIANS)||For the purposes of allowing a child to stay temporarily with a guardian to finish their studies when the family move to a new posting.|
|DSA (NW)||Day School Allowance (North Wales) is to assist children living in North Wales to access education taught in English.|
|SCV||School Children’s Visits contribute to the travel costs of children travelling to see their families in school holidays and half terms etc.|
Firstly, you’ll need to contact the MOD Children’s Education Advisory Service (CEAS). To find out more about who they are and their contact details, click here. They will issue you with some forms and register you. You’ll need to fill all these in and once completed; your soldier sends them to the governance team to be issued with an eligibility certificate. There are a few considerations and many regulations to abide by. Read more
The following is an over view of what the CEA process involves.
- Contact CEAS for the initial forms
- Get the forms signed and stamped by relevant chain of command
- Send/fax the forms off to the Pay and Allowances Casework and Complaints Cell (DBS PACCC) via your soldier’s unit
- If eligible, your solider will be issued with an eligibility certificate by DBS PACCC
- CEA is claimed via JPA in a published ‘window’ three times a year ready for the next term
- Once you start to claim, you will need to keep the receipts from the school to show that you have paid them
- The CEA rate is calculated every summer and the new rate is published in August
You must renew your CEA eligibility certificate (CEA EC) every time anything changes including: when withdrawing from CEA for one child but continuing for another, when changing school, when your certificate expires and at any other time when directed by the DBS PACCC.It is worth noting that:
- Claimants who are assigned for six months or less, or on an operational assignment of any length, are not required to renew their CEA EC on assignment, provided their current CEA EC remains valid.
- If a claimant is extended in post for six months or less, but is in possession of an assignment order to join a new unit within six months of the expiry of their current CEA EC, they may seek permission from the DBS PACCC to extend their current CEA EC and complete one immediately on arrival at their new assignment.
- A change between junior and senior school, where there is a change of Head Teacher or location, is regarded as a change of school.
Got a question or wish to discuss this in more detail? Contact AFF at firstname.lastname@example.org
Latest CEA rates published.
AFF fully supports the choice of accompanied Service for Army families. Read more
When choosing to accompany the soldier, we recognise the impact this may have on the whole family, including the disruption and uncertainty of their children’s education.
One of the ways the MOD supports a continuous education is through the Continuity of Education Allowance (CEA), which is available for all eligible, mobile soldiers. It is a capped allowance and has risen very little in the last few years.
Ensuring better access
This year, AFF wrote a statement to the chain of command acknowledging that CEA rates are a complex issue, but also highlighting that the biggest impact in recent years has been on the lower paid soldiers. AFF believes it is essential that the MOD ensures schools on the MOD Accredited Schools Database are affordable for all ranks by reflecting this in the CEA allowance.
Whilst we recognise the fiscal quandary for the MOD to keep up with the spiralling cost of private education, for continuity of education to work, there is a necessity to sign up for the long term. State Boarding Schools are not the only solution as these schools are often full and there are simply not enough places across the UK.
AFF is therefore pleased with the new published rates for this academic year.
Talk it through
If you have any comments or queries about CEA, email AFF’s Education and Childcare Specialist at email@example.com
Education allowances per term from 01 August 2016:CEA Board - Junior: £5,470
CEA Board - Senior: £7,245
Your soldier can access more information on Joint Personnel Administration (JPA).
SENA is the Special Educational Needs Addition. This can be claimed by Service families if a child, who is already in receipt of CEA, is then found to have Special Educational Needs (SEN). You’ll need to contact the CEAS in the first instance. Read more
Who can assess my child’s SEN?
Your child can be assessed by a Chartered Educational Psychologist; however they must be from the recognised Dyslexia Action organisation to support your claim for SENA.
Although the Educational Psychologist is employed by Dyslexia Action they will be qualified to determine, and assess, all forms of SEN, and therefore recommend the corresponding level of support required.
Details of Dyslexia Action and their nearest office are available at www.dyslexiaaction.org.uk. If the distance to your nearest office is not acceptable, then you could approach Dyslexia Action and ask if the assessment could be carried out at the school - travel arrangements would be at your own cost.
NB - Dyslexia Action offers an initial assessment in order to determine if a full assessment is required; this is worth undertaking as you can only re-coup the cost of the full assessment if your child is found to have SEN.
How do I apply for SENA?
Contact the Children’s Education Advisory Service (CEAS) to ask for a form.
You’ll need to include the report from the Dyslexia Action Educational Psychologist with your application, and a letter from the school outlining the support that they’ll provide based on the report, including the corresponding costs.
Useful things to know
- It can only be claimed to cover the cost of additional lessons to support your child’s SEN, it cannot be used for equipment
- It can’t be claimed specifically for extra time in exams
- It’s possible to receive help from the local authority as well as from the MOD
- In some cases, you may not have to pay a minimum of a 10% contribution
- After claiming for six terms, your child is likely to have to undergo further assessment to carry on receiving the allowance.
Sometimes, postings don’t coincide with school years and it can become tricky especially when your child is at a day school and studying for examinations. It’s also an issue if the posting is abroad and a similar curriculum isn’t offered. Read more
The allowance is intended to cover the additional costs of living away from your home such as postage, telephone calls and stationery. The allowance is not intended to cover school fees.
Contact CEAS for more details – DCYP-CEAS-Enquiries@mod.uk
This allowance is to support families who live in North Wales to have access to education in English. Read more
Teaching in English is often only available at independent day schools and therefore this allowance is a contribution towards the fees.
Currently this is for all children of statutory school age. AFF is looking at increasing this to include the 10 hours of free early education for three and four year olds in wales.
If you have experience of this, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
School Children’s Visits (SCVs) are a contribution towards the cost of reuniting children with their families wherever they are posted to, over a certain distance away. This could be for half terms and/or holidays. Read more
Parents contribute to these journeys. The SCVs year is from September to August; to find out more details and claim, please visit your unit admin office.
AFF has been campaigning for all children to have equal access to be able to visit their parents wherever they live in the world.
If you’re divorced and posted overseas, then current military policy doesn’t offer you the same access to some MOD family allowances as your married peers.
The inability to claim SCVs is significantly affecting the ability of many in your position to see their children due to the additional cost of travelling to an overseas posting. To find out more, including AFF’s view, please click here.
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