6.11 Educational Assistance

Forms

Community Employment Opportunities - Rural and Northern Manitoba (PDF 126 KB)

Focus on Employment (PDF 140 KB)

Traning Request - Process with Neeginan Institute of Applied Technology (PDF 193 KB)

6.11.1 Legislative Authority

Schedule A, section 9 (a) and (b) of the Regulation provides for special needs as follows:
  • "up to $150.00 per household in any fiscal year, but the minister or any person or persons authorized by the minister may, in accordance with terms and conditions that may be prescribed by the minister, grant an additional amount"
  • "expenses essential to the employment of a recipient."

For the purposes of this section, amounts up to $150.00 per household in any fiscal year are referred to as "special needs" and any additional amount is referred to as "excess special needs".  

Educational costs fall under section (b), with the exception of school supplies for dependent children which should be provided under section (a).
 

6.11.2 Approval of Educational Costs - Educational Special Needs

Requests for educational special needs must be approved by the director or designate.
 
Prior to receiving educational assistance, participants are required to exhaust all other resources for which they are eligible. If participants are eligible for other sources of funding and are on a waiting list, educational costs will not be provided.
 
Educational costs will not be authorized when the participant has already completed an undergraduate university degree, or one post-secondary training course, unless approved by the director or designate.
 

6.11.3 Full-Time and Part-Time Study

Educational costs will be provided only to participants enrolled in a full-time course of study (which is at least 60% of a course-load as determined by the educational institution the participant attends).
 
Exceptions to full-time study may be made for participants who: cannot manage a full course-load for personal or familial reasons; require a partial course-load to complete their program of study; or, require courses that are available only on a part-time basis.
 

6.11.4 Residency

Educational costs should be provided only to participants who are attending school in Manitoba.
 

6.11.5 Secondary Studies

Secondary studies are generally available without cost to students if they attend a school in the area in which they reside. Participants are encouraged to attend schools in their area as tuition fees will not be provided for secondary studies.
 
Educational costs, including child care and transportation, may be provided only if they are approved as part of the participant's Personal Job Plan. Dependent upon a course load, miscellaneous school costs of up to $25.00 per month may be provided in full or pro-rated.
 

6.11.6 Correspondence Courses

Tuition fees may be provided for a correspondence course only if the course is required to complete an approved program of study and the cost of the course is less than the cost of providing child care or transportation.
 
The costs associated with these courses may be granted in accordance with educational policies.
 

6.11.7 Post-Secondary Studies

Forms

Check off Summary List (PDF 37 KB)

Employability Assessment (PDF 280 KB)

 

Full-time Post-Secondary Studies Eligible under the Enhanced Education Policy

Manitoba Student Aid, or any other approved funding resource, provides educational costs for participants pursuing full-time studies in approved post-secondary programs.
 

Full-time Post-Secondary Studies Not Eligible for Manitoba Student Aid or Other Approved Financial Resources

In exceptional cases, participants may be assisted to take a short, full-time post-secondary program that is not eligible for Manitoba Student Aid or other approved financial resources. The program must be employment-focused and lead to self-sufficiency, or reduced dependency, and be two years or less in duration. Approval of the action plan will be based on an assessment of the participant's employment goals in relation to the labour market demand.
 

Part-time Post-Secondary Studies

Educational costs may be considered for part-time studies that can be completed in two years if Manitoba Student Aid or any other approved financial resources are not available and there is no alternative to attending part time. Educational costs that may be provided include tuition fees, books, child care costs, transportation and miscellaneous expenses. The $25.00 per month for miscellaneous expenses that is available for full-time studies is pro-rated, depending upon the course.  
 

6.11.8 Satisfactory Attendance and Progress Standards

Policies

 
Individuals receiving educational costs must maintain satisfactory levels of attendance and progress standards, as determined by EIA, in order to continue to receive assistance.
 

6.11.9 Persons in Default of a Student Loan

Educational costs will not be provided to individuals who have defaulted on a Canada Student Loan or a Manitoba Student Loan. Individuals will be advised of the possibility of reinstatement available through the Secretary of State (address is located in sections 6.11.17).
 

6.11.10 Dependents and 5(1)(f) Cases Attending School who will Turn 18 During the School Year

Dependent children or individuals enrolled under section 5(1)(f) of the Act, who turn 18 while attending school and require continued assistance, will be referred to a municipality if they live outside of Winnipeg in an area that has a municipal level of government. These individuals will apply to Employment and Income Assistance when residing within Winnipeg.
 

6.11.11 Child Care

EIA may provide for the costs of child care in order for participants to actively engage in an approved employment or training plan. The cost of child care can also be paid as a short-term measure to meet a health need. Participants are required to use licensed child care whenever possible.
 

Licensed Child Care

Child Care regulations permit licensed child care centres and family child care providers to charge parents up to $2.00 per day per child, above the maximum fee subsidized by the Child Care Program. The participant is responsible for paying the first $1.00 of these extra charges. Excess special needs may be used to pay any additional charges, up to $1.00 per day per child.
 

Unlicensed Child Care

Assistance for unlicensed child care services may only be considered upon receipt of verification that the participant has applied for licensed child care. Additionally, assistance for any unlicensed child care arrangement may only be considered by staff where confirmation is provided by the participant that the proposed child care provider and all members of the provider’s household over the age of 11 years have received a satisfactory Child Abuse Registry Check (see http://www.gov.mb.ca/fs/childfam/child_abuse_registry_form.html). EIA can reimburse the participant for the cost of the Child Abuse Registry Check(s), based on receipts.
 
In accordance with sections 7.1 of the Regulation, income assistance funds may be used to pay for unlicensed child care services provided by a relative, unless the child care is provided by a parent or guardian (or spouse of a parent or guardian) of the child, or the child’s sibling who is under the age of 18.
 

6.11.12 Moving Costs

Policy

 
Where participants move for the sole purpose of pursuing an education, the move is considered part of the educational plan and associated costs are to be treated as an educational special need.
 

6.11.13 Overpayments

Participants must be informed at the time of enrolment into an educational program that they are obliged to advise the EIA office immediately if they withdraw from their program or reduce their course-load. Failure to do so may result in an overpayment.
 

6.11.14 Resources

In accordance with section 12.1 of the Regulation, participants must have applied for the maximum benefits available from all other sources (such as student loans and Band Funding). Eligible participants who are approved to attend post-secondary studies under the Enhanced Education Policy or are accepted by the ACCESS Program or Employability Assistance for People with Disabilities program. Labour Market Agreement for Persons with Disabilities (LMAPD) will be directed to seek educational costs only.
 

6.11.15 Training Allowances

Participants who engage in a training program may be paid a training allowance by the sponsor. The total amount of the training allowance, less approved child care, transportation costs and miscellaneous costs of $25.00 per month, will be treated as a financial resource available to meet the individual's needs. See section 15.2.1 regarding unearned income.
 
Participants who engage in a program and receive a wage will have that wage treated as earned income and the work incentive provisions will be applied. Income from wages, as opposed to training allowances, can be identified when at least the minimum wage is paid and when all compulsory deductions are made, such as deductions for the Canada Pension Plan and Employment Insurance.
 

6.11.16 Employability Assistance for People with Disabilities Program

Participants with mental or physical disabilities may be eligible for assistance with educational costs from the Employability Assistance for People with Disabilities program Individualized Training Fund through the Employability Assistance for People with Disabilities Program (formerly marketAbilities) and are counselled to access this resource. Participants in receipt of this funding may be required to apply to Manitoba Student Aid in order to determine eligibility for Canada Study Grants that could offset the costs of disability supports. Any funds issued by the Employability Assistance for People with Disabilities Program and the Canada Student Grants Program will be considered an exempted source of income when participants are taking part in education as part of their approved action plan. For more information on the treatment of Canada Student Grants see Section 6.11.21
 
In instances where categorical eligibility for persons with disabilities may be reviewed, to make certain there is no disruption of the post – secondary education or skills training plan arranged through the Employability Assistance for People with Disabilities Program, a director as authorized by Section 5(1) of The Manitoba Assistance Act will ensure income assistance for persons with disabilities will continue for the period of the plan only.
 

6.11.17 Enhanced Education Policy

The Enhanced Education Policy allows single parents and spouses of persons with disabilities to pursue post-secondary programs of two years in duration or less.
 
Participants must demonstrate that their educational goals are consistent with their action plans and have a reasonable chance of leading to employment. The Director must approve the program and participants need to meet program prerequisites.
 
Participation in post-secondary programs under the Enhanced Education Policy will be limited to participants who:
  • have been enrolled in EIA for at least six months;
  • have no previous student loan defaults;
  • have not previously completed post-secondary training;
  • maintain satisfactory attendance and progress;
  • have not previously received training supported by EIA; and
  • are not eligible for other educational funding.
 
A participant must be enrolled in a full time course of study (which is normally at least 60% of a course-load as determined by the educational institution). Exceptions to full-time study may be made, at the Director's discretion, for participants who: cannot manage a full course-load for personal, medical or familial reasons; require a partial course load to complete their program of study; or, require courses that are available only on a part time basis.
 
Participants approved to attend will be required to obtain financial support to cover only the following educational costs provided through Manitoba Student Aid:
  • tuition fees;
  • books;
  • child care fees up to $500.00 per year;
  • local transportation; and
  • miscellaneous expenses of $12.00 per week while attending school.
 
In exceptional cases, if a participant's costs exceed the level of both the Canada and Manitoba student loans, a Manitoba Study Assistance Bursary is available. Both Canada and Manitoba student loans must be repaid in full by the participant.
 
Anyone who wishes to appeal his or her loss of eligibility for student loans should contact the Secretary of State, Box 2090, Station D, Ottawa, Ontario K1P 6C6.
 
If required, Employment and Income Assistance will provide child-care costs in excess of $500.00 per year, which is the maximum provided by Manitoba Student Aid.
 
Post-secondary programs that are more than two years in duration or requests for support for part of a program longer than two years will not be approved. In such cases, participants must apply for both educational and living costs. The only exceptions are approved participants accepted through the ACCESS program or sponsorship through the Employability Assistance for People with Disabilities Program (formerly marketAbilities) Labour Market Agreement for Persons with Disabilities (LMAPD).
 

ACCESS Program

EIA will approve single parents and persons with disabilities who are enrolled under this program to participate for the full duration of their course provided that they meet the eligibility requirements of the Enhanced Education Policy. Participants will need to obtain only the educational costs as stated above. All other categories of EIA participants accepted under this program will be required to obtain both educational and living costs to attend their course.
 

6.11.18 Post-Secondary Institutions Eligible for Student Aid

Policy

 
For information on post secondary institutions please see the Manitoba Student Aid web site which provides details on student awards, bursaries, grants and scholarships.
 

6.11.19 Pre-Employment, Job Readiness and Skills Training Programs

Policies

 
Pre-employment, job readiness and skills training programs that are offered through various community partners, but are not post-secondary programs, may be included in a participant's action plan if they lead to self-sufficiency, reduced dependency on EIA and are completed within a reasonable period of time. If required, secondary education may be considered as part of the action plan in combination with these types of programs.
 
Support costs including transportation, child care and miscellaneous expenses as required will be provided.
 

6.11.20 General Assistance Participants

General Assistance participants have work expectations and are expected to find employment as soon as possible (see section 11.1.3). Where there are dependent children, participants are expected to balance child-care responsibilities and employment expectations.
 
Education, pre-employment, job readiness and skills training (or any combination thereof) may be considered as part of a participant's action plan when barriers have been identified that prevent the participant from job searching and finding employment. Participants who wish to engage in tuition-based educational or longer-term skills training programs will be required to explore any alternative means of financial support.
 
Education, training, and skills- or employment-focused vocational programs will not be supported for participants who quit a job for the purpose of upgrading their level of education or vocational skills.
 

Education

In exceptional circumstances only, secondary education may be approved as a part of the participant's overall action plan. General Assistance single people and childless couples will be expected to continue to search for work (if it is deemed that the participant's circumstances make this a reasonable request) and accept any reasonable offer of employment.
 

Secondary

Secondary education includes high school studies, basic academic upgrading, high school equivalency and
 

English as a Second Language programs

The duration participants can attend secondary education is determined by the assessment of participant's employability and employment goal as identified in his or her action plan. Generally, the length of time for education would be short-term.
 

Post-Secondary

Approval will not be given to General Assistance participants to attend post-secondary educational programs with the exception of individuals participating in the ACCESS program, who may be approved to remain enrolled in EIA and receive their living costs from the program. (See description of ACCESS program in section 6.11.17). These participants will be required to obtain their educational costs from alternative sources of funding. All participants will be required to seek alternative funding for both their educational and living/family living costs if they wish to pursue post-secondary educational programs.
 

Pre-Employment, Job Readiness and Skills Training Programs

Pre-employment, job readiness and skills training programs up to three months in duration that are offered through various community partners may be included in a participant's action plan and can be approved by the worker.
 
In exceptional circumstances, and with supervisory approval, longer-term skills training programs beyond three months may be included in a participant's action plan. Participants must complete an Education Research Form and return it to their worker for review. A request for approval will be forward to the Supervisor.
 

Support Costs

Support costs for transportation, child care and miscellaneous expenses will be provided as required when participants are engaged in educational, training and skills programs. Only transportation will be provided when a participant is conducting a self-directed job search. Participants are expected to attend programming on a regular basis in order to receive supports.
 

6.11.21 Canada Student Grants

Policy

 
Effective for 2009/10 school year the Federal government announced changes to the Canada Student Loans Program (CSLP) including the introduction of new grants for low-income students called the Canada Student Grant Program. The new Canada Student Grants adhere to a flat-rate benefit schedule whereby students with a minimum of $1.00 of assessed need are awarded the full grant amounts.
 
Students must first apply for a Canada Student Loan/Manitoba Student Loan in order to establish their financial need (and verification of their disability if applicable). See the Manitoba Student Aid website for further details.
 
The following grants are considered an exempted financial resource for participants taking part in education as part of their approved action plan.
  • Canada Student Grant for Students from Low-Income Families
    Participants who qualify for a federal student loan and meet the specific grant eligibility requirements, will receive $250 per month of study (half at the start of the year and half mid-way through), up to a maximum of $3,000 per academic year. This grant is available for all years of your university undergraduate, college, or trade school program, provided your entire program is a minimum of 60 weeks in length.
  • Canada Student Grant for Students with Dependants
    Participants who qualify for a federal student loan and you have children under the age of 12 (as of the start of your study period), you may be eligible to receive $200 per month for each child.
  • Canada Student Grant for Students with Permanent Disabilities (formerly named the Canada Access Grant for Students with Permanent Disabilities)
    Participants who have a permanent disability and qualify for a federal student loan you may receive $2,000 per academic year to help cover the costs of accommodation, tuition, and books.
  • Canada Student Grant for Services and Equipment for Students with Permanent Disabilities (formerly named the Canada Study Grant for the Accommodation of Students with Permanent Disabilities)
    Participants who have a permanent disability which requires them to incur exceptional education-related costs for things such as tutors, note-takers, interpreters, braillers or technical aids, may receive up to $8,000 per academic year to help pay for these expenses.
  • Canada Student Grant for Part-Time Students with Dependants (formerly named the Canada Study Grant for Part-Time Students with Dependants)
    Participants who are a part-time students with up to two children under the age of 12 (as of the start of your study period), may be eligible for $40 per week of study, and participants who have three or more children under the age of 12, may be eligible for $60 per week of study.
  • Canada Student Grant for Part-Time Students (formerly named the Canada Study Grant for High-Need Part-Time Students)
    Participants who are a part-time student, qualify for a part-time Canada Student Loan may be eligible for up to $1,200 per academic year.
 
With the exception of the Canada Student Grants, other student awards and bursaries of $100.00 or less are not considered income, however, awards and bursaries in excess of $100.00 must be used to offset educational costs. If used for personal needs, student awards and bursaries are to be treated as unearned income.