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Children and carer responsibilities

One of the main considerations of returner learners with child/ren or carer responsibilities is, 'who will look after them when I am on my course?
Adult with child on shoulders
© University of York

The things to consider about caring responsibilities are:

  • Do you constantly worry about a family member or relative?

  • Do you provide emotional support on the phone?

  • Do you travel home at weekends to help look after someone? Would this continue if you were to start a course?**

If you answered ‘yes’ to any of thees questions, you may be a carer.

There is help available. If you have children or have carer responsibilities, then whichever institution you choose to take your next study steps with, will be able to offer a range of support packages. This ranges from teams, your allocated college, academic supervisor, the student union, or colleagues in student services. There is also likely to be a dedicated contact with responsibility for supporting students with caring responsibilities.

Here at the University of York for example, we offer all of these services, as well as working very closely with the York Carers Centre and this partnership provides monthly Carers’ Cafes on campus. Wherever you live in the world, there will be similar services available to you, both within your university of choice, local college, or local authority.

Read the linked testimonial of a student carer returning to education and working through some of the difficulties while on the course.

Share any experiences you have as either a carer of children, or other adults, or of a time when one of your own primary carers managed home responsibilities with study. What impact has that had on you in terms of your journey back into education now?

© University of York
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Returning to Education as a Mature Student

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