Leaving Home

about this guide

For teachers:

These self-study In Real Life (IRL) topics can be used to augment your current Senior Phase provision. However, you may wish to look at information about cocreation in the activity section to design PSE provision in the Senior Phase . As with any activity it is important to recognise that there may be potential triggers for learners in working through these tasks. You may find it helpful to set parameters to have a safe environment for young people. The Senior Phase – benchmarking tool , Senior Phase – learning pathways design and Curriculum Co-Design from Education Scotland sets reflective questions to help you assess your Senior Phase provision. School leavers transitions – a targeted approach in West Dunbartonshire is a bespoke and tailored personal and social development intervention for young people in their Senior Phase. The offer is for those pupils identified at risk of entering a negative destination upon leaving school. The early intervention approach increases the young person’s chance of moving into a positive and sustained destination.

You may wish to refer to and/or reflect on information from GTCS A children’s rights-based approach, Broad General Education topics such as Planning for Choices & Change, Relationships, Sexual Health & Parenthood as well as the Relationships IRL that may also be relevant for your learner/s. In this IRL topic there are a number of different self-study activities that enable learners to explore and examine their current and future needs maybe and how these may change post-16/school. The final section helps learners plan their next steps and may help you support learners as they develop their actions plans, storyboards or mindmaps.

The aim of this IRL topic is to provide learners with a safe, supportive environment to:

  • examine how possibly leaving home for college, university, work or any other reason will change for them as they transition beyond school,
  • explore different routes that are available around housing/accommodation that are directly relevant to their lives/lived experiences,
  • understand where to go, what to ask and how to have their needs met in relation to leaving home/housing/accommodation.

For Learners

What is this?

This self-study topic is written to give you a chance to think about how your housing/accommodation needs might change in the next year or two. Use the questions to guide you through areas that are of interest/relevant to you. This will help you to understand how to find out about different housing/accommodation options and to allow you to explore various alternatives and find out what things really matter to you. There is no single ‘right’ answer – what you find out is relevant to you and is likely to be different from someone else.

Why should I use it?

This topic area gives you the time to explore/examine this issue in greater detail and let you apply it in real life to see how you can find answers for things that are important to you. You can look at your next steps if you are thinking about leaving home for college, university, work or any other reason. You can take time to think about the questions and explore the information you find out. Think about how this information will be of use to you right now or in the future.

What do I need?

All you need is something or somewhere to keep the information you find out – this might be your phone, your GLOW One Drive, notebook etc. You can work in whatever way is best for you e.g., research online, library, or in small group.

What do I do now?

Start at the section titled ‘Leaving Home’, read the information in each section and then move to the next area that is of interest. Work through these and keep a record of what you find out that is important to you. Once you have gone through all the information there are some final questions that will help you write an action plan or you may have other questions you want to explore.

leaving home

Thinking of changing your housing/accommodation?

You might be thinking about moving out of your current home for a number of reasons but there lots of things to think about. Where are you living now? Are you living at home with parents/carers/family? With friends? In a hostel? What is the reason you are thinking of changing your housing/accommodation right now?

What are my rights?

Leaving home for whatever reason can be a difficult but exciting time – there is a lot to think about and find out before you make any decisions. Have a look at this information about your rights as a young person and some common questions about rights. Your rights cover lots of things so take your time to find information that is about leaving home and what you should know about your rights and housing/accommodation. Young Scot has some information about what you can legally do at what age and Skills Development Scotland has a School Leavers Toolkit that might be of interest too. Keep notes about what you find out that is important if you are thinking of leaving home.

I am going to college/university away from home (student halls/renting student accommodation)

Have a look at the information from The Uni Guide about living at home vs living in halls and then think about how you would answer the following questions:

  • Which university/college are you going to? Have a look on your university/college website to find out about the accommodation they offer students. Take a look at this UCAS guide to Student Accommodation.
  • Find out the contact details of the Student Support or Housing/Accommodation team at the college/university you are going to.
  • What types of accommodation do they offer? Is it on or off campus? If you will be living off campus how will you get in each day? Find out the times of public transport (bus/train etc.) and which you will need to take each day. Find out how much this will cost for a week/month/semester and if a student travel card might be an option.
  • What does your student accommodation cost per semester? What things are included and what things are not included in the price? For example, you might need to get a TV licence
  • What will you do about your meals? Are they provided or will you have to buy our own food? Work out how much your meals will cost you for a week/month/semester.
  • Do you know anyone else who has lived in student accommodation at the same (or another) college or university that you could ask about what it is really like?
  • What other things might you need – just for living in student halls? For example, bedding or kitchen utensils etc.
  • There may be some benefits that you can access.

I am setting up my own home

Are you thinking of renting a property from a local authority/council, private landlord or housing association? Have a look at housing options for young people, what is social housing? and saving for your own place that might be helpful. What information have you found out that is useful to you? For example, are you looking for social housing or privately rented housing? What do you need to find out about these options? Where in your local authority can you find out about housing options? Try here for North Lanarkshire Council Housing and Housing Associations and here for South Lanarkshire Council housing options and Housing Associations.

  • How do you arrange to view a property you might want to rent?
  • What are tenancy agreements?
  • What is your deposit for?
  • What is an inventory?
  • What are your responsibilities as a tenant?
  • What are you landlord’s responsibilities to you?
  • Will you need home insurance?
  • Will you have to get the gas and electricity connected?
  • What other costs will you have to budget for?

What other things might you need to know/think about? What items will you need and how much will these cost? For example, all your furniture, kitchen items or bedding etc. Where will you get these items? How much will Council Tax be? How will you get services such as gas and electricity connected? What will the cost be? How will you budget for all your outgoings? Do you know what these will be? For example, heating, food, TV/internet etc. Is there anyone you know who has recently moved into their own home that could give you some advice? There may be some benefits that you can access.

Before you move in

There are a lot of things to think about and ask before you move in to your new home.

  • Do you need references?
  • What is included in the tenancy agreement?
  • When is your rent due and how will it be paid?
  • Are there any fees or deposits that need to be paid?

Is there anyone you know who has recently moved into a rented property that you could ask for advice?

Thinking about a gap year?

You might be thinking of taking on a gap year before leaving home to go to university, college or setting up your own home. What might you need to know or think about?

  • What reasons do you have for considering a gap year?
  • What might you do during a gap year – travel? Work? Volunteer?
  • How long do you want to go for?
  • Where are you thinking of going? Is it a safe place to travel to? Will you need vaccinations?
  • How much will it cost?
  • What type of insurance will I need?
  • Can you need to defer your place at university/college?

Do you know someone who has already been on a gap year? Ask them to share their experience/s and tips with you.

Other things to think about

Whatever reason you are thinking about leaving home here are some other things to think about. If you are care experienced you might have other questions – who can you speak with? Pupil Support teacher? Social Worker? Friends?
• Do you have your own bank account? Do you know how/where to set up your own bank account?
• Do you know how to look after your money? Can you budget?

So what next?

My Action Plan.

Now that you have looked at all the information/tasks in the section/s you are interested in it will be useful to bring everything together to see what you want to do next. You could write your action plan, for example a story board or a mind map, to help you think about what you found out and what things you need to do next. Take your time and answer as many questions with as much detail/information as you can but there is no need to answer all the questions. If you want you can discuss these with a teacher or someone else you trust.

  • Where am I now? What have I found out? How will I use this? How will this help me?
  • How do I feel about these changes?
  • Where do I want to get to/go?
  • What do I need to do? What should I ask – myself/others about this?
  • What else do I need to find out/know about?
  • What will be different for me 16+? What are my rights?
  • What actions do I need to take? What should I do next? Where can I go for more help/information/support? What else do I need – resource/s, information?
  • What timescale will I need for these actions?