Aiming High Short Breaks Scheme

The Aiming High Short Breaks scheme is for children and young people who need additional support to attend or take part in leisure activities.

Short breaks give children and young people the chance to spend time away from their parents or carers.They can give parents and carers a valuable break away from their responsibilities to recharge their batteries. A short break ranges from an hour at an activity to a weekend away. Short breaks can include day, evening, overnight, weekend or holiday activities..

The Aiming High Short Breaks Scheme provides families with a personal budget in the form of a direct payment. The Short Breaks Scheme aims to meet the individual needs and interests of children and young people who
need additional support to either go to, or join in leisure activities. Payments are made into a special bank account so children and young people, together with their parents or carers can decide how they want to
use the money so they can enjoy their leisure time by choosing what works best for the whole family.

The Scheme will be reviewed annually to make sure it continues to meet the needs of families in Rutland and remains affordable. Whilst Rutland County Council provides funding through the Short Breaks Scheme, all families are also expected to contribute towards the overall costs of providing short breaks for their children. This includes entrance fees to groups, facilities and activities in the community, as well as charges to attend
Aiming High activities.

How does the Short Break Scheme work?

Money will be paid directly to your family.

You have the freedom to spend the money on the short breaks that will benefit your child the most.

The payment is to help cover any additional costs a child with special educational needs or a disability may incur when going out for the day or to an activity.

What can the grant be spent on?

The purpose of the funding is to help cover any additional costs a child or young person with special educational needs or a disability may incur when attending an activity or going out for the day.

A short breaks grant can be used for:

  • To pay a personal assistant to provide 1:1 support to attend the short break
  • Public Liability Insurance
  • Costs involved in paying a personal assistant (e.g. payroll)
  • PA / carer travel costs to an activity
  • Entry costs for the PA in to the venue
  • Private 1:1 tuition if you child needs this because of their additional needs (e.g. riding, dancing, singing)
  • 1:1 support to allow your child to attend an activity, including Aiming High and Family Centre activities 

A short breaks grant cannot be used for:

  • Travel/petrol costs between the PA’s home and the child/young persons’ home.
  • Hotels/holidays
  • Activity costs e.g. swimming, trampolining, horse riding, climbing, brownies, clubs, after school activities
  • School trips or activities
  • Aiming High or Family Centre activities costs
  • Nursery or Child care

If you are in any doubt about what you can use the grant for then please speak to one of the Aiming High Team.

Who can apply

The scheme is for children and young people aged 5 to 25 years old, resident in Rutland, not receiving any support from Rutland Social Care and:

Have a place at a special school, Designated Special Provision (DSP) or Enhanced Resource Provision (ERP) that is funded by Rutland County Council and are in receipt of mid-rate disability living allowance / PIP (care component)


Receive higher level disability living allowance / PIP (care component)

How to apply

Apply for the Aiming High Short Breaks scheme 

Grant amounts

Once we are satisfied your family meet the criteria, you will receive the following:

In receipt of higher rate DLA / PIP - £1,000 per year

In receipt of mid rate DLA / PIP and attending a special school - £800 per year 

In receipt of mid rate DLA/PIP and attending a DSP or ERP - £500 per year 

If you apply part way through a year, the amount will be paid on a pro rata basis. The money will be paid in two instalments throughout the year.

Your responsibilities

  • You have to return a monitoring form to tell us how the money has been spent
  • You must keep receipts 
  • If you choose to use your Short Breaks Scheme payment to employ someone, there are certain things you need to do as an employer.
  • This is a type of personal budget. Personal budgets can also sometimes be used to arrange and pay for some of the support agreed in a child or young person’s Education, Health and Care (EHC) Plan or a Social Care Child in Need / Care Plan.

What help is available to manage a Short Breaks Scheme?

  • Companies such as Disability Direct and PayPacket offer various levels of support to help you manage your money. They can receive the Short Breaks Scheme money and handle all invoices etc on your behalf. There will be a charge for these services which you will need to meet from your Short Breaks Schemes budget. You may decide just to use a Payroll Service to undertake some or all of your payroll obligations as an employer i.e. wage slips, tax and National Insurance contributions, year-end tax returns etc. There will be a charge for these services which you will need to meet from your Short Breaks Schemes budget.
  • The Aiming High Team are available to provide you with information and advice you may need.

Who could provide the support I need?

  • You can employ your own Personal Assistant or Support Workers.
  • You can pay a care agency or a self-employed Personal Assistant or worker to provide the support you want.
  • There may be a friend or family member (excluding those who live in your household) who you may be able to employ.
  • You can buy overnight residential care.

How can we find a suitable Personal Assistant?

The PA Network on Rutland Information Service lists PAs who work with different age groups across Rutland.
Rutland County Council does not fully vet the Personal Assistants listed, but to be included on the list they must prove they have:
• the relevant skills
• two positive references
• a current DBS check
• the relevant safeguarding knowledge
These PAs can then access training and support from Rutland County Council to keep them up to date.
Rutland County Council do not specify an hourly rate for PA s employed via the Short Breaks Scheme and you don’t have to use the Network - you can also advertise to find your own PA. You just need to be sure that the PA you choose has the skills and training needed, and is right for your family. Some people choose to advertise in their local community, their child’s school or the Job Centre.

Where to get more help

Contact the Aiming High team at Rutland County Council:

Tel: 01572 722577

Email: aiminghigh@rutland.gov.uk