Tuesday, 11 June 2019

Ceisteanna (224)

Gino Kenny

Ceist:

224. Deputy Gino Kenny asked the Minister for Education and Skills the number of asylum seekers and refugees in higher education and further education, respectively; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [23351/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Education)

The main support available to students is the statutory based SUSI grant scheme. In general, persons with refugee, subsidiary protection or leave to remain status can access the same supports as Irish nationals.

Persons in the asylum process are not eligible to access the statutory based SUSI grant scheme. However, the administratively based Pilot Support Scheme provides supports along similar lines to the SUSI grant scheme and is available to persons in the asylum, subsidiary protection or leave to remain process. Details of the 2019/20 Pilot Support Scheme can be accessed at

https://www.education.ie/en/Learners/Services/Pilot-Support-Scheme/Pilot-Support-Scheme.html

With regard to statistics, the Higher Education Authority has advised that higher education institutions do not collect data on the number of asylum seekers or refugees in higher education.

There are limited statistics available for students in the further education sector. However, the statistics are very much dependant on individual students self-declaring. For 2018, a total of 1,428 students self-declared as asylum seekers with a further 1,849 self-declaring as refugees.