§ Mr. Laurence Robertson
To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will make a statement on the introduction of the bursary scheme for students taking the Diploma in Social Work. 
§ Jacqui Smith
[holding answer 14 January 2003]: The bursary for social work students commences in September 2003 and will be payable to new and existing students who ordinarily reside in England, who are undertaking the new degree in social work or the diploma in social work and who are not funded through training by their employer.
The bursary is non means-tested and is being introduced to encourage more students to enter training. It will be paid at the rate of £3,400 for students residing in London during their studies, £3,000 for those living outside London or £2,600 for those who continue to reside in the parental home. This includes £500 per year towards travelling costs incurred during practice placements. The student's assessed liability for tuition fees will also be met.274W
Students are still entitled to apply for a student loan and if they have special needs may also be entitled to allowances from the local education authority (LEA). A means tested bursary scheme already exists for social work students who hold a first degree who are not entitled to student loans and LEA allowances. The General Social Care Council administers this.