The BBC is reporting that Student Finance England (SFE) have admitted to incorrectly awarding postgraduate loans to 68 Welsh students.
The students were told they would get funding for postgraduate courses at English universities beginning in September 2016. One student told BBC Wales he was “devastated” when told of the mistake on the day his first payment was due.
Welsh Education Secretary Kirsty Williams called the situation “totally unacceptable”. The Student Loans Company (SLC), which provides finance for students across the UK, said loans of up to £10,000 had been mistakenly awarded due to “human error”.
The SLC said that to be eligible for a postgraduate loan through the Student Finance England scheme, “students must have been ordinarily resident in the UK and islands for three years prior to the start of their course and most recently in England, for reasons other than the purpose of study”.
Twenty of the 68 Welsh students who were approved for the loan received the first instalment of £3,300 but were then told they would not be receiving any further payments.
Another 48 were notified they had been incorrectly approved, before receiving any payments.
Let us know your thoughts on this episode of ‘human error’ from the SFE in the comments below or via Twitter – should the students be compensated in some way? ~ Meena
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