Written answers

Tuesday, 14 December 2010

Department of Education and Science

Higher Education Grants

10:00 am

Photo of Arthur MorganArthur Morgan (Louth, Sinn Fein)
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Question 81: To ask the Tánaiste and Minister for Education and Skills if she will list, on a county basis, the number of grant applications received and the number which have been processed for each local authority and vocational education committee here in tabular form. [46948/10]

Photo of Mary CoughlanMary Coughlan (Tánaiste; Minister, Department of Education and Science; Donegal South West, Fianna Fail)
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The process of assessing and paying third level or further education grants is a matter for the relevant local authority or VEC.

I am aware that the timing of payment varies between the 66 awarding authorities depending on a number of variables including the volume of applications received, staffing resources and whether or not properly completed application forms have been submitted. Work prioritisation across different functions, and how available staff are deployed to execute those functions are matters for the management of each VEC and local authority concerned.

This year's student grant schemes include a number of significant administrative and service improvements aimed at addressing the issue of delay, which include an initial roll-out of a new online grant application system. The new system, introduced in both Irish and English, is already operating in 11 grant awarding authorities. Building on this initial phase for the current academic year, the ultimate aim will be to make it available to all applicants nationally.

Key among the other improvements introduced are a complete overhaul of the grant application form, streamlined administrative processes, advance payments to awarding authorities and publication of the grant schemes some two months earlier than last year. The Student Support Bill, which will provide for a fundamental and radical restructuring of the whole student grants administration function and provide for a single unified scheme is now listed to be taken at Report stage on 16 December 2010.

The table below details the number of new student grant applications received, awarded, refused, on-going, cancelled, yet to be processed, transferred and the number paid by the local authorities and Vocational Educational Committees for the 2010/11 academic year up to the week ended 3 December 2010 unless otherwise stated. The information has been supplied to my Department by the local authorities and the Vocational Education Committees.

My Department is in constant contact with grant awarding authorities to monitor the situation in relation to the processing and payment of student grants, particularly as a number of grant awarding authorities have not supplied up to date information in this matter. It recently wrote, on my behalf, to the heads of the grant awarding authorities to inform them that I am anxious to ensure that remaining applicants receive decisions on their grant applications as soon as possible and requesting their co-operation in prioritising this work in their Councils/Committees.

Local Authorities - Processing Position as at week ending 3.12.10
Local AuthoritiesNumber of New ApplicationsAwardedRefusedOngoing / Further Information or Documentation RequestedCancelled / WithdrawnYet to be processedTransferredPaid
Carlow Co. Council2331582540406151
Cavan Co. Council293174265371716174
Clare Co. Council6823752717907922253
Cork City Council77526769198613798208
Cork Co. Council160821516645222640113179
Donegal Co. Council877454112180310100300
Dublin City Council245797633128358418391748
Dun/Rath Co. Council8272541012501411197197
South Dublin Council8632929320614123135213
Fingal Co. Council9962411671730311104101
Galway Co.Council250479310683444543184793
Kerry Co. Council7034386712613059370
Kildare Co. Council10522955319523271215295
Kilkenny Co. Council432301404118032235
Laois Co. Coubcil396257412317553257
Leitrim Co. Council22513915371033123
Limerick Co. Council72416959150172646591
Limerick City Council2831511585211190
Longford Co. Council20712818328021112
Louth Co. Council6021693214191975449
Mayo Co. Council64238845452720117247
Meath Co. Council73519511821842000147
Monaghan Co. Council32318838345058166
Offaly Co. Council229144291591220140
Roscommon Co.Council481321384521056321
Sligo Co. Council301164226618031137
Tipperary (NR) Council3121972151131020159
Tipperary (SR) Council451238445017939216
Waterford City. Council174812742701772
Waterford Co. Council537346230 11317
Westmeath Co. Council39026036588028260
Wexford Co. Council514270839421640215
Wicklow Co. Council7763265313110138118159
VECs - Processing Position as at week ending 3.12.10
VECsNumber of New ApplicationsAwardedRefusedOngoing / Further Information or Documentation RequestedCancelled / WithdrawnYet to be processedTransferredPaid
Co. Carlow VEC337312156022132
Co. Cavan VEC1129636165238224424500
Co. Clare VEC123063114133147080238
Co. Cork VEC266933615913254671588200
City of Cork VEC11303381953472435191137
Co. Donegal VEC199010161974711981098840
City of Dublin VEC268476645910335462310313
Co. Dublin VEC2893429272113341737281154
Dun Laoghaire VEC37514760884274118
City of Galway VEC62742157718070314
Co. Galway VEC192180511824540558155194
Co. Kerry VEC18161084178361113773448
Co. Kildare VEC131041814554920551230
Co. Kilkenny VEC84841810267020160131
Co. Laois VEC7092987517815796488
Co. Leitrim VEC40323524619363872
City of Limerick VEC5723297960842000
Co. Limerick VEC996469127286292659150
Co. Longford VEC718417889367053248
Co. Louth VEC1133658148120610794232
Co. Mayo VEC1538581180319080175
Co. Meath VEC13075181543585815762142
Co. Monaghan VEC84745310304017180183
Co. Offaly VEC74945710014324520112
Co. Roscommon VEC8105611028218047266
Co. Sligo VEC94438349391374044203
Co. Tipperary NR VEC929425119232467037202
Co. Tipperary SR VEC756597454930035215
Co. Waterford VEC51031166133000113
City of Waterford VEC573133451121324327126
Co. Westmeath VEC93150813318623081188
Co. Wexford VEC176830721580319249175372
Co. Wicklow VEC103841710321822161117116
Information from the following Local Authorities refers to week ending 29. 10.10 Wicklow
Information from the following Local Authorities refers to week ending 5. 11.10 Waterford County incomplete
Information from the following Local Authorities refers to week ending 19 11.10 Louth
Information from the following Local Authorities refers to week ending 26. 11.10 Westmeath
Information from the following VEC's refers to week ending 5. 11.10 Wexford
Information from the following VEC's refers to week ending 26. 11.10 Tipperary SR, Tipperary NR, City of Limerick, Mayo
Information from the following VEC's refers to week ending 19.11.10 Laois
Information from the following VEC's refers to week ending 12.11.10 Meath,
This information has been supplied to the Department by the local authorities and the Vocational Education Committees.

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