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Plans For Student Loan Scheme Are "Off The Table"


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It appears the Government has scrapped plans for a student loan scheme.

Junior Minister Mary Mitchell O'Connor has told students it's "off the table" while the current Government is in place.

According to the Union of Students in Ireland (USI), she said: “There is no plan in the department looking at that for the near future.”

Opponents of the "study now, pay later" system have said it would heap thousands of euro of debt on students.

Michael Kerrigan of the USI says they've been campaigning against it for a long time.

He explained: "We have and always have advocated for a publicly funded method of higher education, where there is no student contribution fee.

"We had it in the early 1990s... we believe it is the best way to go forward. It does take significant investment, but there's a huge return on investment."

A report into higher education in Ireland had previously recommended three funding options - one of which was the abolition of the existing upfront fees for both undergraduates and postgraduates, and their replacement with a system of income contingent loans provided by the State.


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