Displaced Ukrainian students to receive free tuition in Scotland

Ukrainian students forced to flee their homeland by Russia’s invasion are to be given free tuition and cost-of-living support, subject to parliamentary approval.

The Scottish Government proposals offer Ukrainians the opportunity to study on a further or higher education course from 2022/23.

Under the plans, the students will not have to pay tuition fees and they will be supported with living costs, providing they have submitted an application to the Homes for Ukraine, Ukraine Family or the Ukraine Extension schemes.

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The plans aim to provide “stability and assurance” for Ukrainians who have had to flee their homes because of the Russian invasion.

Free tuition plan: Jamie Hepburn, higher and further education minister.Free tuition plan: Jamie Hepburn, higher and further education minister.
Free tuition plan: Jamie Hepburn, higher and further education minister.

If approved, it means eligible students can access free tuition and living cost support up to £8,100 per year in the form of bursaries and loans.

Those entering college will be eligible for bursary grants of up to £4,668 each year.

Ukrainian students residing in Scotland who have previously started college or university courses and who have experienced hardship will be eligible to apply for immediate financial assistance through a newly created £1 million International Students Emergency Fund.

Jamie Hepburn, higher and further education minister, said: “We are determined to do everything we can to give displaced people from Ukraine the warmest welcome possible and we want to ensure students arriving here have the support they need to start or continue higher and further education.

“By extending home fee status and living cost support to students arriving from Ukraine, we hope to provide some stability and assurance at this deeply troubling time and ensure those forced to flee their homes can live safely and comfortably in Scotland for as long as they need to.

“We have also created a new £1 million International Students Emergency Fund. This will help Ukrainian students already in Scotland who find themselves in hardship due to their situation to continue their studies.

“Education opens doors to opportunities and transforms lives for the better so it is absolutely crucial we remove any financial barriers those displaced by the conflict may face.”

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The regulations are expected to be laid in Parliament in early May and subject to parliamentary approval, they will come into force on August 1, 2022 – the first day of the new academic year.

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