Written answers

Tuesday, 9 May 2017

Department of Education and Skills

Third Level Funding

Photo of Carol NolanCarol Nolan (Offaly, Sinn Fein)
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178. To ask the Minister for Education and Skills the value of additional funding received by universities or other third level institutions for the purposes of improving access, including premium level of funding for target students; the institutions in receipt of such funding; the amount received by each institution over the past five years and to date in 2017; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [21412/17]

Photo of Richard BrutonRichard Bruton (Dublin Bay North, Fine Gael)
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There are currently 3 streams of funding for the Higher Education Institutions (HEI) to support the delivery of access –a block grant through the Recurrent Grant Allocation Model (RGAM), the Fund for Students with Disabilities (FSD) and the Student Assistance Fund (SAF). The RGAM grant goes to the higher education institutions and the FSD and SAF directly support students.

HEIs receive a block grant to support teaching, research and access. The amount that each institution receives is informed by the number students from target groups that are enrolled in that institution. The funding is not additional, it is part of the core allocation.

The target groups for the purposes of funding are students from under represented socio-economic groups, students from the Traveller Community, students with disabilities and mature students (new entrants).

The data collected by the Equal Access survey is drawn upon for the block grant. Each access student from the target groups receive an additional weighting of 0.33 for the purposes of funding. The standard resource varies from year to year and depends on the overall budget for higher education.

In addition to the core RGAM funding, each HEI also receives an allocation under the Student Assistance Fund and the Fund for Students with Disabilities. The amount of funding allocated to each institution under these Funds is also attached.

The Fund for Students with Disabilities

Allocations since 2012-13

SectorTotal Allocated 2012-13Total Allocated 2013-14Total Allocated 2014-15Total Allocated 2015-16
Higher Education7,744,5907,595,3937,689,6457,593,906
Further Education2,496,7692,394,7362,372,9272,400,272
Other EU349,059315,521345,826374,801

Student Beneficiaries

Higher Education6755741385248920
Further Education956122413501362
Other EU186172176204

The Student Assistance Fund


Student Beneficiaries

17,84015,16614,95915,772Not Available

In 2016/17 the total allocated for SAF was €7.9M and financial returns with the total number of beneficiaries supported are not submitted until last quarter of this year. However, there were approximately 15,772 students funded in 2015/16 academic year and we would expect more or less the same figure for 2016/17.


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