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DfE grant funding announcement – how to apply for grant funding

Senior Mental Health Lead Training – how to apply for grant funding                                                        

senior mental health lead grant

The Department for Education (DfE) has just announced the next round of grant funding for senior mental health leads, for all state-funded schools and colleges in England. This article provides information on how to apply for grant funding for the Real Training Senior Mental Health Leadership courses.

We are pleased to share that further funding available for senior mental health lead training, means that up to two thirds of eligible settings will have the opportunity to benefit from the training by the end of the 2022-2023 financial year! Applications are now open, and in this article, we guide you through the steps to complete the process. 


Step 1 – Read the guidance for grant funding to ensure eligibility

The DfE has published a comprehensive guide to applying for grant funding. Initially, we recommend you visit this page, which offers a useful overview of topics such as what the grant must be used for, eligibility criteria when to complete the submission and so on. It will also provide information regarding creating a ‘DfE Sign-in account’ which is necessary in order to access the form. 

You can also visit this page which will offer more information on the conditions of the grant and application guidance. We highly recommend you read all of this information to avoid submission errors that could delay or invalidate your application unnecessarily.

Note: if you are not eligible for funding, don’t worry as we have non-funded places available too. Our courses are just as relevant to those working in non-state or international settings as well.

Step 2 – Decide on the course you wish to apply for grant funding

In order to receive the grant payment, you will need to confirm to the DfE which training course you have chosen.

At Real Training, we offer two DfE quality-assured Senior Mental Health Leadership courses. Click the links below to visit our course pages and learn more:

Senior Mental Health Leadership Certificate (SMHLC) – aimed at those who are new to a Senior Mental Health Leadership role or are aspiring to become a leader in this area.

Senior Mental Health Leadership – Advanced Award (SMHLAA) – aimed at those who have some experience in the role, and have some existing training in mental health leadership.

If you are unsure which of these is best for you, then please don’t hesitate to get in touch with one of our experienced course advisors who will be happy to help, either by email info@realgroup.co.uk or by phone on +44 (0)1273 35 80 80.

We encourage you to apply for a grant BEFORE you book a course if your place is reliant on this funding.

Step 3 – Collate information for your setting in preparation for application

It is important to ensure you have the relevant information to hand in and that certain conditions are met before commencing the application process. This includes, but is in no way limited to:

  • Having a commitment from your setting’s senior leadership team to develop a whole school, college or centre approach to mental health and wellbeing
  • Details of your senior mental health lead, who will receive the training in 2022 to 2023 financial year, to oversee your setting’s whole school, college or centre approach
  • Authority to submit a claim for this training grant on behalf of your educational setting

Having this information readily available will enormously reduce the time it takes to apply and helps ensure correct information is provided first time.

Step 4 – Complete the application form

Once you have all of the necessary information required, you can access the form here. At this point, you will need to log into your DfE account. It is important to check all the details that the DfE holds for your account –  you can complete this form if any of them are incorrect. You will then be guided through the application form, step-by-step.

Once complete, you will be asked to agree to the declarations set out in the grant terms and conditions. You will then receive an email of confirmation, containing your claim reference. It isn’t possible to make amendments to the application form once submitted. However, if errors have been made or circumstances change, you can submit another application, the details of which will be used, and previous applications disregarded.

Step 5 – Book your course

Once you have received confirmation of your grant, you can visit our booking form to book your place on one of our Senior Mental Health Leadership courses. The DfE has committed to offering senior mental health leadership training to all state schools and colleges by 2025.

Step 6 – Confirm your chosen course with the DfE

The DfE will ask you to complete a further form to confirm that you have booked your chosen course. You will only be able to access this form with an invitation from the DfE. This will enable them to authorise payment of your grant.