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Community Dáil Éireann Education Government Louth

O’Dowd Welcomes Increased Investment in Third-Level Education

Local Fine Gael TD, Fergus O’Dowd, has welcomed the new landmark policy on the Future of Higher Education announced this morning by his colleague the Minister for Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science, Simon Harris TD.

O’Dowd said “As part of the overall announcement the Government has decided that income contingent loans for fees will not form part of the future funding model.

“This is a positive day for Ireland’s Higher Education. We will also be investing to make the system more accessible and inclusive, to give staff security in their employment and to make our third level sector the envy of Europe.

“Planned additional investment of €307 million will be made over the coming years through annual budgetary processes which will see an additional €2,000 in every student’s education.

“Minister Harris intends to reduce the student contribution fee over time which is a massive boost for students and working families as this cost continues to be a significant burden.

O’Dowd added “The government will also increase student grants to assist those who need it most by simplifying the overall scheme. It will also conduct an analysis of part-time courses with a view to introducing statutory supports for part-time students.”

“Minister Harris has prioritised this overhaul as part of his term in government and I very much welcome his commitment and focus in the sector.”

As part of the announcement the Minister also confirmed he will chair a new oversight group to drive reforms. This will focus on creating a unified system and improving pathways between further and higher education.

ENDS

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