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Tuesday 26 September 2017

What the cost is now and what the options are to fund students

• Current contribution of €2,000 will rise to €2,250 in September.

• By September 2015 it will be €3,000.

• Contribution charge was introduced as a registration fee in 1995/96 when third-level tuition fees were abolished in 1995/96. Originally, it was the equivalent of €190.

• Students in most colleges also have to pay a levy, ranging from €100-€300 a year, to cover sports, social and recreational facilities.

What are the options?

• Retain the student contribution charge -- but it is not enough to fund a quality system.

• A graduate tax/student loan scheme -- but no immediate savings for the State and it could take up to 17 years to recoup the money.

• 100pc exchequer funded -- requires the availability of state funding.

• Reintroduction of tuition fees -- this will put families under pressure.

Irish Independent

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