Dumbarton constituency MSP, Jackie Baillie, has backed Scottish Labour’s plans for a minimum student income. The scheme would be linked to the Scottish Government’s living wage and has the potential to double the financing support available to college students.
Currently, the maximum available college bursary is around £4000 per year, and those in further education have no access to student loans. If agreed by the parliament, Labour’s Minimum Student Income would be worth around £8,550 per year.
In practice, outside of doubling financial support for students, the plan would also fulfil a valuable safety net for students caught between government red tape.
During a parliamentary debate on the subject, Jackie highlighted the case of a constituent who is unable to receive a college tuition fee waiver, despite living in Helensburgh, as her parents have not yet purchased a home in the area due to her father’s Royal Navy submarine deployment.
“The case of my constituent highlights just how detrimental government red tape can be to prospective college students and this case will be one of many across the country.
“There will be hundreds of naval families moving to the area and I am calling on the Scottish Government to remove this unhelpful barrier to young people accessing college.”