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Dáil Éireann Debate, Tuesday - 10 May 2022

Tuesday, 10 May 2022

Questions (597)

Rose Conway-Walsh

Question:

597. Deputy Rose Conway-Walsh asked the Minister for Further and Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science when he will publish the economic evaluation of the Cassells report; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [23010/22]

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Written answers (Question to Further and Higher Education)

The economic review of funding options was published on May 4th - the day I also launched Funding the Future – the Government's policy response to the Cassells and DG Reform Reviews on the future of higher education. It and the economic review are available on the gov.ie website at the following location: www.gov.ie/en/policy-information/49e56-future-funding-in-higher-education/.

The Deputy will no doubt be keen to learn that Funding the Future settles the question on funding Higher Education. The Government has decided that income contingent loans for fees will not form part of the future funding model. Instead, the Government is committing to a multi-funded model of additional Exchequer investment and employer contributions through the National Training Fund.

The policy sets out the vision and direction of higher education funding, our commitment to addressing legacy issues in higher education and detailing our ambitious plans for investment and reform. This includes:

- planned additional investment of €307 million to address core funding challenges for our institutions, that will be made over a number of years through annual budgetary processes. This does not account for future demographic needs or new policy proposals for higher education.

- Plans to consider options to address cost as a barrier to higher education, and how we will pursue funding measures on these issues through the Estimates process, including in respect of reductions to the student contribution and enhancements to the SUSI grant in line with the Student Grant Review.

Again, the additional detail is available on the gov.ie website at the following location: www.gov.ie/en/policy-information/49e56-future-funding-in-higher-education/ .

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