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Concerns as local students on the PUP unable to apply for SUSI grant until September

Aug 5, 2021 14:08 By Shannonside News
Concerns as local students on the PUP unable to apply for SUSI grant until September Concerns as local students on the PUP unable to apply for SUSI grant until September
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Many students are concerned they will not be able to attend college in the new academic year due to the uncertainty over the granting of the support.

A Longford mother is calling on the Government to clarify their position around the SUSI third level grant and the eligibility of students claiming the PUP.

On re-applying for the grant this year, Sylvia Johnston was informed her son was not eligible for the support due to his claiming of the support payment over the last year following his part-time job closing during the lockdowns.

Her son, along with thousands of other students across the country had been told that the social welfare payment would be assessed as part of their income, leaving many over the limit for the grant.

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Speaking in the Dail last month, the Higher Education Minister, Simon Harris said that going forward, the pandemic unemployment payment will not be assessed against student applications and any student previously entitled to the support will have their application approved.

Sylvia is urging the government to enact Minister Harris' direction as soon as possible as the college year is due to begin shortly:

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In a statement to Shannonside news this afternoon, The Department of Higher Education has confirmed that once students transition out of the PUP from September 7th, they will be entitled to reapply to SUSI to have their applications reassessed based on change of circumstances.

The applicant must be able to provide proof that the change of circumstances is not temporary and likely to continue for the foreseeable future for the provision to be accepted. The student will then be assessed or reassessed.

This has been met with severe criticism from several parents over the fact that the process will not open until the start of September, with fears the backlog in cases will result in delays to the allocation of grants.

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According to one parent, this leaves their child's attendance in college uncertain due to the unknown date of payment of college fees without financial support.

LISTEN: Daniel Considine speaks to local parent Sylvia Johnston about her concerns over the SUSI grant and how it will affect her son returning to college:

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