College costs have fallen but expect return to ‘normal’ in 2021

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Life on January 12th, 2021 by steve

Ireland“Student budgets, like the rest of the world, have been thrown upside down by the pandemic. For some, the costs of living have increased because they’re out of work, still paying rent and paying higher broadband, heat and electricity bills as a result of working at home …” (more)

[Peter McGuire, Irish Times, 12 January]

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Minister Harris welcomes payment of €250 to 71,000 students

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Governance and administration on December 18th, 2020 by steve

Ireland“Minister for Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science Simon Harris TD has confirmed that almost 71,000 students will receive an additional €250 in their student grant payment starting today (Thursday). As part of Budget 2021, Minister Harris secured a €250 payment to all full-time EU students in publicly-funded higher education institutions to acknowledge the impact this pandemic has had on third-level students …” (more)

[gov.ie, 17 December]

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Student Universal Support Ireland – Covid-19

Posted in Governance and administration on December 18th, 2020 by steve

IrelandRóisín Shortall (Dublin North West, Social Democrats): To ask the Minister for Education and Skills when students who do not avail of the SUSI grant will receive the €250 Covid-19 payment; when arrangements for payment to students who do not avail of SUSI will be finalised; and if this cohort of students will receive it before Christmas …” (more)

[Dáil written answers, 16 December]

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Student Universal Support Ireland

Posted in Governance and administration on December 16th, 2020 by steve

IrelandRose Conway-Walsh (Mayo, Sinn Fein): To ask the Minister for Education and Skills if he will provide additional information on the €20 million in budget 2021 for SUSI that will see the funding returned to 2019 levels; the projections on demand upon which this is based; and if he will make a statement on the matter …” (more)

[Dáil debates, 15 December]

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Fees – withdrawal from courses

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on December 16th, 2020 by steve

IrelandAnnie Hoey (Labour): I am raising the need to address the issue around higher education funding being potentially lost to students who withdraw from their courses and the knock-on consequences that this will have not only for free fees – a term I use lightly – but also for their access to Student Universal Support Ireland, SUSI, grants …” (more)

[Seanad debates, 15 December]

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Minister Harris announces Government approval for review of the Student Grant Scheme

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on December 15th, 2020 by steve

Ireland“Minister for Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science Simon Harris TD has announced Government approval to conduct a review of the Student Grant Scheme administered by SUSI. The review’s terms of reference include examining the value of the maintenance grants and income thresholds, the availability of grants for part-time students, adjacent and non-adjacent rates, supports for postgraduates and how Ireland compares against other jurisdictions …” (more)

[gov.ie, 14 December]

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Review to examine availability of grants for part-time third-level students

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on December 14th, 2020 by steve

Ireland“A review of the student grant scheme for third-level students has been approved by the Cabinet, the Minister for Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science, Simon Harris, has said. The terms of reference for the review include examining the value of the maintenance grants and the income thresholds, the availability of grants for part-time students, supports for postgraduates and how Ireland compares against other jurisdictions …” (more)

[Colm Keena, Irish Times, 14 December]

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Student Grant Scheme – Covid-19

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on November 28th, 2020 by steve

IrelandPearse Doherty (Donegal, Sinn Fein): To ask the Minister for Education and Skills the effect Covid-19 pandemic unemployment payments will have on the entitlement of third level students to student grants; if it is planned to make changes to the income assessment process for such students; and if he will make a statement on the matter …” (more)

[Dáil written answers, 26 November]

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Ireland’s youth are let down by barriers to higher education

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on November 26th, 2020 by steve

Ireland“Ireland’s higher education system has been engulfed with crises for over a decade now. Students are up against countless challenges to get into and stay in college and the situation is constantly deteriorating further. Students and their struggles are not highlighted enough in the media. It is barbaric that the fourth wealthiest country in the EU somehow can’t scrounge enough money together to pay student contribution fees …” (more)

[Emma Nevin, The College View, 25 November]

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Five-fold rise in number of direct provision students qualifying for Susi grants

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on November 23rd, 2020 by steve

Ireland“The number of students in direct provision who will qualify for the Susi grant for third level education has increased five-fold after Government changes to qualifying criteria. Last year just five students qualified for Susi (Student Universal Support Ireland) grants for either fees or maintenance or both but 25 students have qualified in the 2020/2021 academic year following a review of the support scheme …” (more)

[Marie O’Halloran, Irish Times, 23 November]

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Covid-19: University lecturers warn of ‘chaos’ if face-to-face teaching returns

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Teaching on November 22nd, 2020 by steve

Ireland“University lecturers have warned of ‘chaos and confusion’ if there is a return to face-to-face teaching in the new year in the absence of clear health and safety rules. Minister for Higher Education Simon Harris has said he wants to boost on-campus activity for first year students, in particular, early next year amid concern over a potential rise in drop-out rates …” (more)

[Carl O’Brien, Irish Times, 22 November]

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Department of Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science: Statements

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Governance and administration on November 20th, 2020 by steve

IrelandSimon Harris (Wicklow, Fine Gael): I very much welcome the opportunity to update the House on some of the work of the new Department of Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science just under five months on from its creation and the formation of the Government. I very much appreciate the support and interest from all sides of the Oireachtas for a new stand-alone Department to place a renewed focus on the further and higher education sectors and enhance and develop research and innovation …” (more)

[Dáil debates, 19 November]

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Student Universal Support Ireland – Study in the UK

Posted in Governance and administration on November 14th, 2020 by steve

IrelandÉamon Ó Cuív (Galway West, Fianna Fail): To ask the Minister for Education and Skills if Irish students will be able to avail of SUSI grants post Brexit to study at universities in Northern Ireland and the UK; and if he will make a statement on the matter …” (more)

[Dáil written answers, 12 November]

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Students put at a ‘major disadvantage’ in SUSI grant applications this year, Senator says

Posted in Governance and administration on October 25th, 2020 by steve

Ireland“Labour Spokesperson on Higher Education Senator Annie Hoey has said that students who were in receipt of the PUP this year were put at a disadvantage in their SUSI applications, as the grant application process did not account for government support payment …” (more)

[Julia Bochenek, Trinity News, 25 October]

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Trinity, UCD and RCSI have fewest students receiving SUSI grant

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on October 22nd, 2020 by steve

Ireland“Students from Trinity are among the least likely to receive a Student Universal Support Ireland (SUSI) grant in a comparison of students around the country. According to a recent report by the Department of Public Expenditure, students from Trinity, University College Dublin (UCD) and the Royal College of Surgeons Ireland (RCSI) are the least likely to receive grant-aid, with only 5-25% being entitled to receive Student Universal Support Ireland (SUSI) grants …” (more)

[Shannon Connolly, Trinity News, 22 October]

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Students express concerns over handling of SUSI grants

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on October 14th, 2020 by steve

Ireland“When colleges closed their doors last March, many students were forced to move back to their hometowns to complete the academic year online. With most of these students staying in their locality from March until September, many of their part-time jobs allocated them more hours to help deal with the surge in demand from the coronavirus pandemic …” (more)

[Conor Brummell, SIN, 13 October]

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A Baffling Budget Dashes Hopes for Dramatic Change in Higher Education

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Governance and administration on October 14th, 2020 by steve

Ireland“In June, a new dawn broke for universities. They finally had a government department for themselves – a seat at the cabinet table – and a real chance of concrete reform for the sector. And, on the whole, summer had been a hopeful time for the sector. Higher Education Minister Simon Harris had proven an energetic figure, indicating that he felt higher education needed to be rejigged – and that funding was a priority …” (more)

[Cormac Watson, University Times, 13 October]

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Budget 2021 – Ministers Harris and Collins announce a range of measures including €50 million fund to provide financial assistance for full-time students, new reskilling and retraining package and extension of Apprenticeship scheme

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Governance and administration on October 13th, 2020 by steve

Ireland“Minister for Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science Simon Harris TD and Minister of State for Skills and Further Education Niall Collins TD have today announced a series of new measures as part of Budget 2021. The package includes …” (more)

[MerrionStreet.ie, 13 October]

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€250 payment for third-level students for move to online learning

Posted in Fees, access and admissions, Governance and administration on October 13th, 2020 by steve

Ireland“All full-time third-level students are to receive a €250 payment in the coming year to help compensate for the move towards greater online learning. It is one of a number of education measures set to be unveiled in Budget 2021 including the hiring of 565 additional teachers to bring the pupil-teacher ratio at primary level to a record low …” (more)

[Carl O’Brien, Irish Times, 13 October]

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Income data for thousands of students receiving grants is ‘incomplete’

Posted in Fees, access and admissions on October 7th, 2020 by steve

Ireland“Insufficient data is being collected to determine the full income of thousands of students who are in receipt of third level grants, according to a new spending review. A report by the Department of Public Expenditure shows the State is spending about €360 million per year to a total of 77,000 students in further and higher education …” (more)

[Carl O’Brien, Irish Times, 6 October]

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