Students (Financial Support)

Part of the debate – in the Scottish Parliament on 26th February 2020.

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Photo of Richard Lochhead Richard Lochhead Scottish National Party

Charities such as Stand Alone, which effectively makes the case on behalf of estranged students, have outlined the barriers that estranged students face that are not faced by other students. The issue goes to the heart of this debate. The Scottish Government wants to knock down as many of those barriers as possible.

With regard to the circumstances that have been outlined by Jamie Greene, there are already arrangements in place for different situations at the moment. However, we are talking specifically about estranged students, and I have already outlined the criteria that SAAS looks at when assessing estranged students. At the moment, there are special arrangements in place to support estranged students, for instance, to ensure that they are not subject to the means-testing elements of other support that is available for independent students.

Some account is taken of estranged students, but the purpose of the research is to understand all the issues that estranged students face and make sure that future decisions that we take are informed by that research.