Written answers

Tuesday, 28 February 2017

Department of Education and Skills

Student Grant Scheme Eligibility

Photo of Thomas ByrneThomas Byrne (Meath East, Fianna Fail)
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296. To ask the Minister for Education and Skills if he will make a decision on maintenance grants for third level students that attend private colleges. [9833/17]

Photo of Richard BrutonRichard Bruton (Dublin Bay North, Fine Gael)
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Under the Department's student grant scheme, eligible candidates may receive funding provided they are attending an approved course at an approved institution as defined in the scheme. The definition of an approved institution is set out in Section 7 of the Student Support Act 2011 and Regulation 3 of the Student Support Regulations 2016.  

In the context of scarce resources, the Department prioritises grants to students attending recognised colleges ahead of private fee paying colleges. 

Decisions in relation to the future funding of student supports will be informed by the consideration of the options contained in the Report of the Expert Group on Future Funding for Higher Education, published last July. As committed to in the Programme for Government, I have referred the report to the relevant Oireachtas Committee as part of the process for building political consensus on the most sustainable approach for funding the higher education sector in the future.

It is open to higher education institutions that operate on a 'for profit' basis to use their own resources to provide financial supports to any of their students that they consider to be in particular need.


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