(Archive copy for historical purposes only)

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Single able-bodied students (except for children of social assistance recipients) and married able-bodied students will not be considered for social assistance while in attendance at university.    Policy 122.03(b)

Any student applying for social assistance will first be referred to the Newfoundland Student Aid Program before being considered for social assistance.  Other sources of financial assistance for students, depending on individual circumstances, include Canada Manpower Training Allowances and Unemployment Insurance benefits.  Where financial aid is not available from sources other than social assistance or where aid from other sources is insufficient, social assistance may be granted, depending on the student's age and family situation.  This form of assistance is usually limited to the incapacitated, single parents, widows or widowers with children, where there are good prospects that such assistance will lead to self-sufficiency.    Policy 122

It should be noted, however, that social assistance to eligible university students may continue only until the recipient has achieved the first Bachelor's Degree level; the exception to this directive is the student who requires a Bachelor's Degree as a prerequisite to study for another degree in order to achieve a predetermined objective, e.g., B.Sc. required for medical degree.

Children of social assistance recipients who are university students and living in the parental home may be included in the budgetary requirements of the family as a dependent child if under 18 years of age, or as an additional adult of 18 years of age or over.  There is no provision to assist single students living at home whose parents are not social assistance recipients.    Policy 122.05

Prince Edward Island

A minor (under 18 years of age) may be eligible for assistance if, in the opinion of the Director, his home is found to be unsuitable for his care, training and development.  To be eligible, a minor must be regularly attending a course of education or training at a technical, vocational, or high school, or taking a correspondence course, approved by the Department of Education, or be prevented from the above by reason of physical or mental disability, or other cause acceptable to the Director.  However, it is not intended to relieve the parents of responsibility for his care and maintenance.    Regulation 8(1,2)

To qualify for ongoing welfare assistance benefits while attending a post-secondary education program, the beneficiary shall:

a) be otherwise eligible for continuing welfare assistance benefits;

b) have a likelihood of long term dependence on full or supplementary benefits;

c) have developed, through a process of assessment and consultation with the Employment Enhancement staff, a training or educational plan that is appropriately based on a realistic career goal and personal suitability;

d) be enroled in a course of study not exceeding four years on Prince Edward Island;

e) be available for work after each school term (see section 3.7);

f) take advantage of EIC training grants or allowances.    Regulation 12(i); Policy 7(13-3-9)

A client household may continue to receive the allowance for food, clothing, household and personal needs (see pre-added budget, section 5.2.2) on behalf of dependent children who are attending a post-secondary educational institution on a full-time basis and who live away from home.  (A student who is taking three semester courses is considered a full-time student.)    Policy 7(13-5-10)

Nova Scotia - Provincial

No special provisions concerning eligibility of students

Nova Scotia - Municipal

Any student who applies for municipal social assistance in Halifax shall be considered in the following manner:

a) all other sources of assistance (student loans and bursaries, CEIC training allowances, etc.) must have been explored;

b) student living at home:  eligibility of the student depends upon the eligibility of the household head;

c) student living away from home:  if family reconciliation is inappropriate, the student's eligibility is based on his/her need for food, clothing, miscellaneous essentials and shelter (an earnings exemption of $50 monthly for single students and $100 monthly for students with dependents may be allowed on part-time income).    Policy 1.2.8

New Brunswick

Basic assistance may be granted to persons already in receipt of social assistance prior to commencement of studies in accordance with the following criteria:

i) a case plan, to be developed by the worker and client, must identify the latter's educational goals and course of studies; the case plan, signed by the client, will serve as a contract between the client and the Department;

ii) the budget deficit calculation must confirm that the client's other resources (training allowances, federal/provincial loans and bursaries, scholarships and institutional loans) are insufficient to meet his/her basic needs.

Under normal circumstances, income assistance is not available to a student who is not in receipt of social assistance upon commencement of studies.  It may be necessary, however, to provide short-term or single-issue benefits to individuals who are temporarily in need; such benefits are not to exceed three months in duration, and are provided only while the student is enroled in a study semester ( not holiday recess).  Criterion "ii" (previous paragraph) must also apply.

Single-person and two-person units who are eligible for New Brunswick Student Aid Program Assistance are not eligible for social assistance except in accordance with the preceding paragraph.

In the case of single-parent and two-parent units, the amount of the Student Aid award remaining after educational deductions (tuition, student fees, books, supplies, transportation, etc.) and appropriate liquid asset exemptions (see section 4.1) is to be pro-rated over the client's academic year.  Assistance may be granted for babysitting or day care expenses.    Policy A3 - Eff. 01-09-88


An adult who attends an educational institution at the college or university level and a family which includes such an adult are not eligible for assistance under either the Financial Support Program or the Work and Employment Incentives Program, except where such attendance is part of a measure proposed by the Minister.  An adult is deemed to attend such an institution if he does so on a full-time basis for more than two courses or for courses worth more than six credits per term, or for one or two courses or for courses worth credits corresponding to a total of more than six periods or hours of instruction per week, including laboratories and supervised practical work.    Act 7, 12; Regulation 5

The Minister may, however, grant benefits to that adult or that family if he is of the opinion that, without the benefits, the adult or the members of such family would be in a situation that could endanger his or their health or safety or lead to complete destitution.    Act 25

Ontario - Provincial

FBA policy intent with respect to students is as follows:

- to allow a beneficiary who is a student to receive the full benefit of any Ontario Student Assistance Program without having his/her eligibility for FBA or amount of his/her FBA allowance affected;

- to prevent duplicate payment for board and lodging;

- to extend the dependent child status beyond the age of majority in those instances where alternative resources are not available.    Editorial Comment ("old" pol. man. statement)

The Ontario Student Assistance Program ("OSAP") is available for those who require financial assistance to participate in post-secondary education.  Effective September 1993, this assistance is provided in the form of loans for educational and living expenses and bursaries for extraordinary or disability-related educational expenses; OSAP grants are no longer available.

OSAP loans for education expenses (tuition, books, supplies and compulsory fees) are not considered as income or assets for Family Benefits purposes.  With respect to the personal and living allowance portions of OSAP, FBA clients are required to make it clear on their OSAP application that they are receiving Family Benefits, since FBA clients are not eligible for an OSAP personal and living allowance.  OSAP also provides bursaries for students with special needs.  Bursaries provided under OSAP for extraordinary child care expenses (up to $80/week) and disability-related educational expenses (max. $2000 per academic year) are exempted from consideration as income or liquid assets for FBA purposes.  An OSAP recipient must be living at home to be included in the Family Benefits Allowance as a dependent child.  If the child is deleted from the allowance, all benefits cease, including medical, dental and drug benefits; however, if the child remains at home while attending school, a boarder charge will not apply.   FBA Policy 0403-07.

- Extension of dependent child status to age 21 is covered in section 8.3.

Ontario - Municipal

An applicant or recipient or a dependent adult (see section 8.3) continues to be eligible for assistance where he or she is otherwise eligible for assistance and is, with the approval of the welfare administrator, in attendance as a full-time student in one of the following:

a) an approved elementary school, secondary school or private school under the Education Act,

b) an approved college of applied arts and technology established under the Ministry of Colleges and Universities Act in a program that is equivalent to a program given at an institution in (a) above, or

c) an approved education course or training program.

A single person who is either in receipt of a loan under the Ministry of Colleges and Universities Act or the Canada Student Loans Act or ineligible for such a loan by reason of the level of parental income shall not be eligible for assistance under (b) or (c) above.  A head of a family or a dependent adult who is a spouse shall not be eligible for assistance under (b) or (c) above if that person is in receipt of a loan under one of the two Acts mentioned in this paragraph.   Regulation 7; Policy 0303-10, 0304-06

A single parent (male or female) attending any educational program which is approved by the welfare administrator continues to be eligible for assistance provided that the person otherwise remains eligible under the Act.    Regulation 7(3); Policy 0303-10

Manitoba - Provincial

The Student Social Allowances program (under the Social Allowances Act) was abolished in 1993.  Student applicants must apply for assistance under the Department of Education's Student Aid Program or, in exceptional circumstances, to the municipality where they reside.

Editorial Comment

- See section 5.3.7 "s" (Educational Special Needs) concerning assistance with secondary and postsecondary studies for persons already in receipt of Social Allowances.

Manitoba - Municipal

According to the provincial policy manual for the Municipal Assistance program, assistance provided to a person participating in a secondary education program or an employment-focused vocational program is eligible for provincial cost sharing when the following conditions are met:

- the person's plan leading to self-sufficiency or reduced dependency on assistance must be assessed and approved by the municipality;

- educational or vocational plans should not be supported where a person has terminated employment for the purpose of receiving assistance to upgrade educational or vocational skills;

- student loans and bursaries must be pursued;

- single persons are expected to seek and accept full-time or part-time work while not attending the program;

- the course of study should lead to self-support or reduced dependency within a reasonable time;

- the person must be consistently attending classes and making reasonable progress;

- assistance should be provided for basic maintenance costs only (clients should be counselled to use exempted sources of income for miscellaneous education costs and to explore the possibility of assistance from family members for such needs as shelter). Provincial Policy p.31 (insert 2)

The Winnipeg Municipal Assistance Policy Manual stipulates that all students in full-time attendance at an educational institution or technical training centre should be directed to Student Aid (Dept. of Education) for regular and emergency assistance.  Applicants and recipients who attend school part-time (i.e., two courses or less per term) may be assisted where they are willing and able to meet the usual requirements which apply to other employable municipal assistance clients (see section 2.6).   Policy p.48


The definition of "child" in the Saskatchewan Assistance Regulations includes "an unmarried person over 18 years of age who is in full-time attendance at a secondary educational institution".  Secondary school students over 18 years of age do not qualify for social assistance in their own right where they reside in the home of their parent(s).  Assistance may be provided to disabled students over 18 in their own right or to the head of the household in which the disabled student resides.   Regulation 2(c.1); Policy 2-1-2

A youth 16 or 17 years of age living apart from his family as a result of family breakdown or rejection may apply in his own right, or a responsible adult may apply on his behalf, whether the youth is in school or not; in such cases, the parents should be contacted to determine whether they are willing to support the youth.    Policy 2-1-3

A student attending a university is not eligible to receive assistance pursuant to these regulations unless the student is:

a) a person with a disability for whom university training offers the only reasonable prospect for employment and leads to a vocational goal approved by the director; or

b) a person who:

(i) is enroled in an undergraduate program leading to a vocational goal;

(ii) has been receiving assistance for the 12-month period immediately preceding his or her attendance at university; and

(iii) supports a spouse who is a person with a disability, is a spouse of a person with a disability or is a parent who is the head of a one-parent family.

The unit administrator may waive the requirement set out in subclause (b)(ii) where, in the unit administrator's opinion, it is appropriate to do so.    Regulation 9(2)-am.08-92


Effective September 1993, the Students Finance Board (SFB) is responsible for providing funding to full-time students.  Children 16 or 17 years of age who are residing with their parent(s) on assistance or who are Children in Need Living with a Guardian (see section 2.11) remain on the parental file or the guardian's file and are not referred to SFB.   Policy 02-04-06

Persons receiving SFB funding are not eligible for a supplement from Supports for Independence (social assistance).  If additional assistance is required, students are referred to the SFB appeal system.

During school holidays, students in financial need may apply for Supports for Independence, but they are expected to seek work or obtain support from their family;  all regular criteria for establishing eligibility apply.   Policy 02-04-06.

Supports for Independence may be granted, based on the circumstances of each case, where a client is involved in part-time studies or short-term courses.   Policy 02-05-07

Applicants for Supports for Independence who are already in attendance at a post-secondary institution are not eligible for assistance.   Policy 02-05-07

Young persons 16 and 17 years of age living independently and attending high school full-time are maintained on Supports for Independence;  these clients must be assessed, recommended and approved by Supports for Independence following a Child Welfare investigation.   Policy 02-05-07 .

British Columbia

It is not the intention of the Guaranteed Available Income for Need Act or Regulations to subsidize regular or part-time students who are involved in an academic or vocational course, except for clients deemed not job-ready and participating in upgrading or work-oriented courses approved by the Ministry.  Income assistance shall not be granted in the following situations:

- adult students already attending high schools, community colleges, universities, or vocational and other training facilities;

- regular students awaiting student loans;

- students whose requests for student loans have been rejected;

- out-of-province students;

- in-province students who need financial help to complete their education.   Policy 7.2.27

Hardship Assistance (see section 5.2.10, note "l") may be granted in extenuating circumstances.


Northwest Territories

No special provisions concerning social assistance to student applicants.

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