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Students: Coronavirus

Department for Education written question – answered on 18th May 2020.

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Photo of Stuart Anderson Stuart Anderson Conservative, Wolverhampton South West

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what plans he has to ensure university students are not financially penalised due to a delay to the academic year as a result of the covid-19 outbreak.

Photo of Michelle Donelan Michelle Donelan Minister of State (Education)

Students will continue to receive payments of maintenance loans for the remainder of the current academic year.

Universities offering good tuition online will continue to charge fees. However, the government has been clear that if universities want to charge full fees, they will have to ensure that good-quality courses are delivered which are fit for purpose and help students progress towards their qualifications.

The government’s clear expectation is that providers should make all reasonable efforts to enable students to complete their studies. If institutions are unable to facilitate adequate online tuition then they should seek to avoid charging students for any additional terms they may need to undergo as a consequence – therefore avoiding effectively charging them twice.

If students are concerned, there is a process in place. They should first raise this with their university. If their concerns are unresolved, students can contact the Office of the Independent Adjudicator for Higher Education.

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