Students PPE and UCU will pay more because of new regulation

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Since the 2018-2019 academic year, freshmen only have to pay half of their official tuition fees. Students enrolled in expensive, “small-scale and intensive” programmes also receive a 50 percent discount. That means they receive a larger monetary gift from the government than students enrolled in ‘regular’ programmes. That’s not fair, say political parties CDA and VVD. Last year, they asked the minister to ensure the discount is equal for all students.

Same discount for all students
Minister Van Engelshoven wasn’t interested, but after strong urging from within parliament, she created new legislation after all. From now on, all freshmen will receive a discount for half of the standard tuition fees: a little over 1,000 euros. That means that those enrolled in expensive study programmes, will be gifted a smaller share of their tuition fees.

There are around 3,100 students enrolled in expensive programmes. In 2018-2019 they paid between 2,566 and 4,345 euros for their tuition, with an average of 3,654 euros. The discount rule meant students of Philosophy, Politics and Economics, for instance, only paid 2,060 euros for last year’s tuition, instead of 4,120 euros. When the new regulation is implemented on September 1, 2020, the discount will drop to around 1,000 euros. Students at University College Utrecht enjoyed the same discount.

Money to be used for teacher shortage
Adjusting this regulation will yield the government around 2.5 million euros annually. The money will be spent on trying to solve the teacher shortage. There are currently a number of courses for which there are enough available teachers, while schools are begging for teachers for other courses. But teachers that want to switch will have to follow another teaching programme at the highest tuition rate – sometimes thousands upon thousands a year. That will soon change: teachers will be able to receive funding from the government.