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Overseas Students: EU Nationals

Question for Department for Education

UIN 110795, tabled on 3 November 2020

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether EEA nationals aged 16 to 19 will be eligible to apply for funding from his Department for (a) higher education and (b) apprenticeships after August 2021.

Answered on

11 November 2020

We have agreed with the EU that current EU principles of equal treatment will continue to apply for those covered by the citizens’ rights provisions in the EU Withdrawal Agreement and the EEA EFTA Separation Agreement. This means that EU nationals resident in the UK (and UK nationals resident in the EU), before the end of the transition period on 31 December 2020, will be eligible for support on a similar basis to domestic students in the relevant host state.

EU and other EEA nationals not in the scope of the citizens’ rights protections will not be eligible for home fee status, undergraduate, postgraduate and advanced learner financial support from Student Finance England for courses starting in the academic year 2021/22. This change will also apply to further education funding for those aged 19 and above. It will not affect students starting courses in the academic year 2020/21. This will not apply to students from Ireland whose right to study and to access benefits and services will be preserved on a reciprocal basis under the Common Travel Area arrangement.

From August 2021, EU and other EEA citizens, and their family members, as well as non-EEA citizens, will be eligible for apprenticeship funding in England if they have permission to live and work in the UK and meet the residency eligibility criteria in place at the time, which will be set out in the funding rules for the academic year 2021/22.

EEA students, staff and researchers make an important contribution to our universities. The government wants that contribution to continue and is confident – given the world-leading quality of our higher education sector – that it will.