April budget unlikely to include third-level fees

“Minister for Education Batt O’Keeffe’s report on third-level fees is in its final stages of preparation but the college fees issue is unlikely to be addressed in the forthcoming emergency budget. Mr O’Keeffe, who was attending the launch yesterday of a school-building project at Banagher, Co Offaly, told reporters any changes on fees would be ‘family-proofed’. ‘I’m finalising that report at the present time. We’re looking at fees, we’re looking at a loans system, we’re looking at other mechanisms, we’re looking maybe at a combination of both, and I’ll be making a recommendation to Cabinet,’ he said. Asked if the report would be ready in time for the emergency budget on April 7th, he replied: ‘It’s too early to say …’ …” (more)

[Deaglán de Bréadún and Mary Minihan, Irish Times, 13 March]

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