Archive for 23 September 2008

Colleges propose student loans instead of new fees

Posted in Fees and access with tags , on 23 September 2008 by Steve

“A radical plan for a ‘deferred loans’ scheme for thousands of students has been drawn up by university heads, the Irish Independent can reveal. Under the plan, students would start to pay back the ‘loan’ within a few years of graduation, after they have reached a certain salary level. It will be put to Education Minister Batt O’Keeffe as an alternative to the straightforward return of tuition fees when university chiefs meet him tomorrow. The ‘income contingent loan’ would pay for part of undergraduate third-level education which, at the moment, is paid entirely by the State. Students would have the option of either availing of the ‘deferred loan’ or else paying what would be known as ‘top-up’ fees up-front when they enter college …” (more)

[John Walshe, Independent, 23 September]

University heads want fees paid by student loans

Posted in Fees and access with tags , on 23 September 2008 by Steve

“University presidents will lobby for the introduction of an Australian-style student loan system when they meet Minister for Education Batt O’Keeffe tomorrow. The seven college heads have decided to oppose the return of the old fees regime, abolished in 1995, as problematic and inequitable. Instead, they favour a system where Exchequer support for colleges would be “topped up” by student fees. But the cost of these fees would be lent to students and repaid once they start working. They say this would help shift the burden of college fees from the parent to the student who actually benefits from higher education …” (more)

[Seán Flynn, Irish Times, 23 September]

Loans and top-up charges could solve funding issue

Posted in Fees and access with tags , on 23 September 2008 by Steve

“Imposing third- level fees alone could be problematic. But there may be a better way. Given the importance of higher education for our prosperity, it is surprising that government investment has failed to keep pace with the growth in student numbers and international comparators. Earlier this year, UCD President Dr Hugh Brady and Trinity College Provost Dr John Hegarty highlighted the need for increased investment to meet the challenges ahead. Our growing economic vulnerability reinforces the presidents’ case. It is clear that the parlous state of the country’s finances requires corrective action. However, the current “blunt instrument” approach to cutbacks has the potential to do lasting damage to both our university system and our overall economic competitiveness …” (more)

[Ned Costello, Irish Times, 23 September]

Making sense of the fees controversy

Posted in Fees and access with tags , on 23 September 2008 by Steve

“Tomorrow, university presidents will meet Minister for Education Batt O’Keeffe amid increasing speculation about the return of fees. So, what does the future hold for students and their parents …” (more)

[Seán Flynn, Irish Times, 23 September]