- Its reform establishes that the minimum grade of selectivity to be exempt from the tuition payment in the first university course is of 5.5.
- The scholarship budget for this course amounts to 1,417.54 million euros.
- Students and the opposition have criticized the decree.
The Minister of Education, José Ignacio Wert, attended this Wednesday the Education Committee of the Congress at his own request and the PSOE, to inform of the new requirements to access and maintain scholarships and general aids to the study , published in the BOE last week and approved by Decree Law by the Government last day 2.
The Minister of Education has stated during his speech that the scholarship budget for the next academic year amounts to 1,417.54 million euros, which is 20% more than in previous years. The minister stressed that this is the “largest budget in our history in relative and absolute terms.”
The minister has cited the objectives that the scholarship system is more equitable (giving more to those who have less and more effort), more generous (distribute more resources) and more efficient, which serves to reduce early educational abandonment and be channeled better the flow of students between the different levels.
Wert has acknowledged that the necessary academic requirements have been “softened” Wert has insisted on affirming that the decree of scholarships for this course, for which the qualification requirements for the amounts of residence and income increase with respect to the previous one, responds to the will “determined” by the Government to give a boost to the improvement of the academic performance of students, especially university students.
In addition, he commented that this aspect of performance ” so far has had little or no development ,” although it is provided for in the law of measures to boost the productive economy, the law of universities and the Organic Law of Education, as has been assured .
Wert has acknowledged that the academic requirements necessary to access a university scholarship for the exemption of enrollment from this course have been “softened” after meeting the “reasonable” recommendation of the rectors.
Thus, although in the scholarship call of the previous year it was already announced that an average grade of 6.5 would be required to access the university scholarships for this course, it has finally been decided to keep it at 5.5 in the case of the exemption of registration fees for the first year of the degree.
On the other hand, the minister has emphasized that, against those who predicted a drop of 100,000 scholarships last year for the rise from 5 to 5.5 in the note to access the aid, the figure “not much less” is that, in the absence of knowing the data of Catalonia.
Regarding the opinion of the Council of State, Wert has indicated that he does not object to any kind of legality , nor competence or hierarchy of norms, nor objections of constitutionality to the new decree, and has asked where the highest advisory body of the State that there would be a provision for general scholarships of 200 million euros less than in the previous year.
Requirements and aid
The decree, already developed in the call for scholarships for the 2013/2014 academic year published by the BOE on August 19, articulates the grants in a fixed part and a variable part. The first includes 1,500 euros for low income , 1,500 euros for change of residence-taking as reference the housing of a member of the family unit closest to the teaching center-free tuition and basic scholarship (200 euros in Baccalaureate). The variable will be at least 60 euros and will depend on the note , the rent and if there is a budget available.
To access the free tuition, students must have an average score of 5.5 points, while to receive any of the direct financial aid will have to prove that the average is at least 6.5 . Students who leave before finishing the course, who have not attended at least 80% of the teaching hours or have not exceeded half of the credits enrolled, in the case of the University, will have to return the money.
Likewise, in order to maintain the scholarship, students must have passed 100% of the credits in Arts and Humanities, Social and Legal Sciences (or 90% with an average of 6.5) and Science and Health Sciences in the preceding year. (or 80% with a 6.5). If they study Engineering or Architecture or technical education they must have approved 85% of the credits (or 65% if the average grade is 6.5).
The student organization “Students in Motion” has denounced on Wednesday that the Government intends to ” expel from education” the students with few economic resources with the news about scholarships that have been introduced for this course and that Minister Wert has explained.
“The students and workers of Education are being insulted by a Ministry of Education and a Government that have set themselves the goal of dismantling the public system to convert a basic right into a new product with which to obtain economic benefits,” they say. the notice.
Therefore, students are not surprised that this decree has been drafted, which is a “new hack” to public education as it means a reduction in the amount of scholarships and a “recrudescence” of the conditions to qualify for they.
And they remember that the Council of State itself has expressed doubts about the unconstitutionality of this scholarship policy that, in their opinion, ” represents an injury to equality in access to all students”.
As the minister recalled, the report of the State Council on scholarships warned that, “in any case, the system should aim at people who lack the economic means to study in the same way, or the most similar possible, to the rest of the students, without demanding an infallibility that is not demanded in the same way to that rest of students “. Wert has declined to assess “this opinion” but has defended that “one can not speak in terms of the requirement of infallibility” of the requirements posed by the new system.
On the royal decree of scholarships have also been pronounced this Wednesday Socialist Youth (JSE), which also consider that “closes the doors of the university to students without resources” Specifically, as noted by the youth organization, more than 80,000 students will lose his scholarship in the next academic year, 30 percent of those who received it.