Student Support

Equality and Diversity Statement

We welcome applications from disabled people and offer places solely on the basis of potential and suitability for a career in circus. We do not discriminate on the grounds of disability, ethnicity, gender, sexuality or religion. We encourage all students to visit the school before applying to view classes and facilities. Applicants are encouraged to disclose any impairment or condition (for example dyslexia or a physical, sensory or mental health condition) in advance so that the school can endeavour to make any adjustments at audition and during the course to enable participation.

The National Centre for Circus Arts has a strong tradition of providing student care and support services and commit considerable resources to this purpose. Many students who are embarking on a course will be living away from home or abroad for the first time and may face a number of challenges during their training. We aim to provide the necessary services to help all students overcome these and ensure that the highest level of individual care is offered.

Medical support – access to an in house physical therapist 3 days a week paid for by the school and access to a reduced rate Private Medical Insurance scheme. We also offer help and support in finding a local GP and other NHS services.

Counselling – students can arrange to speak in confidence to a counsellor.

Learning Support - support and assessment for students who have a Specific Learning Difficulty and support for students whose second language is English.

The Leverhulme Hardship Grant Fund – supported by the Leverhulme Trust which awards grants to students on our Foundation Degree and BA (Hons) Degree in Circus Arts in order to try and help students in exceptional financial hardship who might not otherwise be able to afford to continue their studies. 

Academic Support

Specific Learning Difficulties

All students entering a course of Higher Education at the National Centre for Circus Arts will be assessed for dyslexia and dyspraxia. If you know that you are dyslexic or have another Specific Learning Difficulty, we strongly encourage you to let us know as soon as possible. This will help us develop a Learning Support Agreement. This is an agreement that is developed between the school and the student to identify any support needs. After obtaining your consent this information will be passed on to the relevant administrative and teaching staff in a confidential manner.

English Language Support

All students who do not have English as a first language will be required to take English Language classes to support both their written and spoken English skills.

All students with English as a second language are strongly encouraged to maximise their exposure to the English language prior to arrival in the UK.

Guidelines on Inclusive Practice

The Conservatoire has developed guidelines on inclusive practice and alternative forms of assessment for students with specific learning difficulties, including examples of good practice from the Conservatoire schools. You can view the guidelines below.

Support for Disabled Students

Applicants are encouraged to disclose a disability to the staff at the National Centre for Circus Arts from the point of application.  If you have any questions or concerns that you would like to discuss before you apply you can contact the Student Support Manager directly. At this stage, you may not know what support you may require; however we will be able to discuss the audition process with you and discuss any suitable support. Any information that you do raise will be treated in confidence and will only be discussed with other members of staff with your permission.

Find out more about support for disabled students from the Conservatoire for Dance and Drama.

Disabled Students Allowance

Process and application:

If you are offered a place at the National Centre for Circus Arts we can also help you apply for the Disabled Students Allowance (DSA), where appropriate, and help you arrange any specialist support you may be entitled to. This can help cover the cost of specialist equipment necessary for your studies, including software and study skills tuition.  Unlike a student loan DSA does not have to be repaid. Applications are made through your awarding body, for example Student Finance England. In order to apply for DSA the awarding body will require evidence of any impairment or disability. This may be proof from a Doctor or by an Educational Psychologist.  If you require evidence from an Educational Psychologist the National Centre for Circus Arts can arrange this for you once you have begun your course. From 2015/16, £200 will be available (via application) to DSA recipients from England to pay towards their specialist equipment allowance that is not funded by the Government.

Mental Health and Wellbeing

The National Centre for Circus Arts is doing ongoing work to promote mental health and wellbeing. The Conservatoire for Dance and Drama has produced various leaflets for students and staff which are available here:

Related Links

Visas and Immigration

UK institutions must be registered with the UK Visas and Immigration in order to recruit non-EEA (European Economic Area) students. The National Centre for Circus Arts holds a Tier 4 sponsor license. 

The visa requirements for non-EEA students coming to study in the UK are subject to change so we advise applicants to visit the UK Government website for the most up to date information and guidance on the visa application procedure. Students are responsible for ensuring that they have the correct visa for entry to the UK.

Once you have been accepted onto a Higher Education course at the National Centre we will provide you with a Confirmation of Acceptance, which you will require to make your visa application.

The UK Border Agency requires you to present your visa and passport on the first day of term at the National Centre for Circus Arts to enable you to enrol. We will make photocopies of these and keep them on file.  We are also required to hold current contact details for all non-EEA students, so you should ensure that the Higher Education team are notified of any changes to your address or contact details.

Further information on visas and being an international student in London can be found at www.ukcisa.org.uk  and www.bia.homeoffice.gov.uk

Accommodation

The National Centre for Circus Arts does not operate any housing of its own, but we do have initiatives in place to aid students in finding suitable accommodation in London.

We advise students to look for housing with other students at the National Centre. Private student halls are not recommended as they are incredibly expensive, and due to our students’ intensive schedules, are also not often very suitable.  Our students tend to live in East or North-East London, areas such as Hackney, Islington, Tower Hamlets, Haringey, Newham or Waltham Forest.

Once you have organised your housing, you should take out home insurance to cover your possessions. Many companies, including high street banks, provide inexpensive insurance specifically for students.

If you require further advice please contact the Higher Education team on degree.admissions@nationalcircus.org.uk

The Building

We are based in Coronet Street, Hoxton in a former electricity generating station. The site has level access throughout the ground floor and lifts to upper floors. There is an adapted toilet on the ground floor and two further accessible toilets in the building. All performances scheduled at the National Centre for Circus Arts are accessible for wheelchair users. There are currently no signed performances or hearing loops.

Further information

If you would like to view further information please see below for some of the Conservatoire’s resources and guidelines to promote equality and diversity.

Please contact the Higher Education Admissions and Student Support Manager to discuss any support needs during the application and audition process or to request any further information:

Ailsa Ilott on ailsa@nationalcircus.org.uk or 020 7613 8244.

You can also visit the website of the Conservatoire for Dance and Drama, here.