Wednesday, 31 May 2017

Questions (166)

Jim Daly


166. Deputy Jim Daly asked the Minister for Social Protection the entitlements available to persons returning to education other than the back-to-education allowance; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [26072/17]

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Written answers (Question to Social)

The Back to Education Allowance Scheme (BTEA) enables eligible persons to pursue approved education courses and to continue to receive income support for the duration of a course of study, subject to meeting certain conditions. The BTEA is designed primarily to support second chance education.

A new €500 annual Cost of Education Allowance will be made available to BTEA participants with children from the next academic year in September. This will help parents, including lone parents, to return to education

The BTEA is not intended to be an alternative form of funding for people entering or re-entering the third level education system. The Student Universal Support Ireland (SUSI) grant, payable by the Department of Education and Skills, represents the primary support for persons pursuing education. In general, most BTEA customers will also have certain registration and related college fees paid by SUSI.

I hope this clarifies the matter for the Deputy.