Student grant system to be overhauled to create one central body

The student grant programme is to be overhauled as part of changes to Ireland’seducation system.

Minister for Education and Skills Ruairi Quinn revealed that a single student grant authority will be established, which will replace the 66 bodies that are currently in place.

The centralised authority will be the City of Dublin Vocational Education Committee (VEC) and it will work as the only organisation in charge of giving out student grants.

It is expected that the new system will affect third-level students applying for finance from the academic year 2012-13.

Minister Quinn said: “While I am grateful to the VECs and local authorities currently operating the student grant function, the system is clearly overloaded resulting in late outcomes to applications and late payments.”

Having one central authority will provide a better service to students cross the country, he added.

As well as awarding funding for pupils, VECs manage secondary schools, colleges, community primary schools and further education facilities in the country.

Written by Donal Walsh – 14/04/2011.

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