Changes to residency conditions to be introduced for 2023-24 academic year.
Eligibility for free student tuition support in Scotland will be extended to cover a wider range of immigration statuses under new proposals.
The Scottish Government has published its response to a recent consultation on student support residency conditions which was launched following the decision in the Jasim v Scottish Ministers court case.
Regulations have been laid in Parliament to extend student financial support to those currently residing in Scotland, who have been granted leave to enter or remain in the United Kingdom where they have also been resident for three years.
The proposed changes, for the 2023-24 academic year, will also see eligibility widened for asylum seeking children to remove the time limit which previously applied. It means unaccompanied asylum seeking children and the children of asylum seekers will be able to apply for tuition fee support.
Higher and Further Education Minister Graeme Dey said:
"Scotland has a strong track record in supporting our young people. I recognise the impact that any delay to an asylum claim can have on a young person's education journey and I hope the changes set out here will go some way to address that.
"In addition, the changes we are proposing to capture a range of immigration statues will mean that all students, other than excepted groups, must now meet the same length of residence in the UK – three years – to access support.
"The public consultation and stakeholder engagement we carried out was generally positive about the proposed changes. We will now seek to engage on other important issues highlighted in the consultation.”
The Scottish Government’s response to the consultation can be read online.
Regulations on the changes to eligibility, including unaccompanied asylum seeking children and children of asylum seekers have been laid in the Scottish Parliament – to be in force for the start of the 2023-24 academic year, from 1 August 2023. Impact Assessments have been published alongside the amending regulations.
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