My Department funds four maintenance grant schemes for third level and further education students. These are the higher education grants scheme, the vocational education committees' scholarships scheme, the third level maintenance grants scheme for trainees and the maintenance grants scheme for students attending post leaving certificate courses.
The higher education grants scheme is administered by the local authorities. The other three schemes are administered by the vocational education committees.
Given the nature of the student support schemes and the application, means testing and disbursement processes involved, officials of my Department have engaged with officials of the Department of Social and Family Affairs in relation to options for the future administration of the various student support schemes.