In order for the withdrawal to a be a qualified withdrawal (no penalty or taxes), the total you take out should not exceed the COA for room and board. In my child's case, he spends more than the COA,. I just take out the whole amount (COA for room and board) for the semester, put it in my bank account, and slowly give him the money. I automatically transfer him the rent money on the first of the month. Then I take the total left, divide the amount by the number of weeks in the semester, and automatically transfer that amount to my child once a week for food. I told him if he needs anything in addition to that amount, he needs to get a job.