Education for Bereaved Service Children

07 Aug 2017

The Duke of York’s Royal Military School (DYRMS) was set up in 1801 specifically to cater for the orphans of those who had fallen in the 1793-1815 Anglo French war. Following DYRMS achieving academy status in September 2010, it provides similar relief in respect of death as a direct result of operations/active duty, on a case by case basis, within the strict remit of a Grant in Aid (G-in-A) provided by MOD.

In March 2010, it was agreed that relief for the fees for those children whose parent had died whilst serving could be provided for through the Grant in Aid mechanism on the basis that it addressed the particular compassionate circumstances arising from a death in service and would not set a precedent.

While DYRMS qualifies for support through the G-in-A, the MOD will honour its commitment to compassionate support. Should the G-in-A be withdrawn following review in line with Treasury requirements, the MOD will support the child to the end of their current educational phase’ in line with the criteria for extended Continuity of Education Allowance (CEA) support.

This article describes the eligibility for and application process to make a claim against the G-in-A for compassionate support for attendance at DYRMS by new applicants or for continued attendance for children covered by Transitional Fee Arrangements or CEA.


The scheme is open to an applicant who meets all of the following criteria:

Cause of Death. A parent of the applicant died whilst serving in HM Armed Forces (Regular Forces or mobilised Reserves Forces) and the parent’s death is attributable to their service, and for which the child or surviving parent is receiving benefits under the Services Pension Order (SPO), a MOD attributable benefits scheme, or the Armed Forces Compensation Scheme (AFCS);

Date of Death. The deceased parent died after 1 September 2001;

Relationship. At the time of death the deceased Service person had legal parental responsibility for the applicant, or the applicant was the biological child of the deceased Service person and was born within 42 weeks of the Serving parent’s death. This includes biological children, adopted children, children subject to a special guardianship order and step children resident with and dependent on the deceased. Fostered children are not eligible.

What the Support provides:

a. Attendance at DYRMS from Year 7 (or thereafter) until the end of the stage of education during which the child reaches age 18 provided the child remains in full time education or exceptionally to age 19 in order to complete A level or vocational equivalent provision;

b. The cost of boarding fees.

What the Support does not provide:

a. Any additional educational or pastoral costs;
b. Travel costs between place of domicile and/or UK residence and DYRMS;
c. Uniform.

Points to remember:

a. Foreign and Commonwealth. DYRMS as a state maintained boarding Academy requires applicants to meet the necessary Border Agency requirements for residency or be in possession of a right to remain visa. Applications can be made before a visa is issued but successful applications will not be ratified until immigration requirements are in place. Arrangements and costs for visas and travel will be the responsibility of the applicant. Students who do not meet the residency requirements for DfE state funded schools and academies may wish to consider application to an independent school offering a bursary in these circumstances and for which the Border Agency can issue a student visa. Children’s Education Advisory Service (CEAS) maintain a list of those independent schools offering bursaries;

b. If the surviving parent is not domiciled in UK a UK resident guardian must be appointed.

Approval Procedure

A written application should be made by the surviving parent or guardian with support from the local welfare officer and include:

a. Evidence to support the eligibility criteria listed above;

b. Confirmation that financial support in respect of boarding fees is not being provided by other organisations, for example, charitable organisations as it is necessary to protect the public purse from inadvertent dual claims. Parents may need to seek financial support from other organisations in respect of other costs not covered by the Grant in Aid;

c. Confirmation that alternative educational boarding establishments offering bursaries to children of Service personnel in these circumstances have also been considered in determining that DYRMS is the best option for the child. CEAS maintain a list of the offers available;

d. Reasons for the application to DYRMS. To ensure the best possible educational and emotional outcome for the individual child it is recommended that consideration is given to the full range of options available. This should be sent to:

Principal Education Officer
c/o Policy Branch
Directorate Children & Young People (DCYP)
Trenchard Lines

Email address:

The Principal Education Officer on behalf of the Director Children and Young People, will judge each case on its merits and all cases will be given sympathetic consideration while ensuring that the terms of the G-in-A apply. The Principal Education Officer must be satisfied that the education offered, pastoral care, military ethos and the pattern of boarding at DYRMS will suit and be in the best interests of the child.

The outcome of the application will be notified to the parent/guardian, welfare officer and DYRMS as soon as possible but will be reliant on timely responses from all parties necessary to provide as complete a picture as possible to ensure the best possible outcome for the child.