Students are to benefit from additional financial support designed to ease cost of living pressures and help them to meet everyday costs whilst they are completing their studies.
In recognition of the challenges some students have faced due to the global rise in inflation, the Government has announced that it will provide an additional £15 million in hardship funding this financial year so that universities can provide extra support to students that need it most.
It builds on the significant £261 million that the Government has already provided to the Office for Students (OfS) for the 2022/23 academic year which universities can draw upon to boost their own hardship funds.
Universities are responsible for ensuring students who need help get the support they need, including through their own hardship funds, or through bursaries and scholarships. Many universities have stepped up their efforts this year offering innovative schemes to support their students including the University of York which announced that £150 would be given to student households who are finding it difficult to pay their bills as part of a £6 million package to support students most in need.
The Government has also confirmed today that loans and grants to support undergraduate and postgraduate students with living and other costs will be increased by 2.8 per cent for the 2023/24 academic year.
For the sixth year in a row, the government has confirmed it will freeze tuition fees for a standard full-time course in the 2023/24 and 2024/25 academic year in England at a maximum of £9,250. This move will help provide better value for students by reducing the initial amount of debt students will take on.
The Government regularly monitors the interest rates set on student loans against the interest rates prevailing on the market (PMR) for comparable loans. The government confirmed that the maximum Plan 2 and the Postgraduate loan interest rate will be 6.5 per cent between 1 December 2022 and 28 February 2023.
From the 2023/24 academic year, the Government will cut interest rates for new students to RPI only so that, under these terms, graduates will not repay more than they originally borrowed, when adjusted for inflation.