The authority responsible for awarding student grants in Ireland has claimed that a rejection letter sent to a grant applicant was a “typo”.
The letter from Student Universal Support Ireland (SUSI) stated that the unnamed student didn’t qualify for a grant despite being over €7,000 below the income threshold. The mistake follows a large number of complaints made by students against the awarding body and its grant application process.
The student’s family had their means evaluated at €46,661, which is over €7,000 below the €54,240 threshold, according to the letter which was signed by a manager at SUSI.
Sinn Féin Town Councillor in Carrickmacross, Matt Carthy, who made representations to SUSI on behalf of the student, said that SUSI had been in contact with him and they claimed that the letter was a typo. It was a misunderstanding and the family in question did qualify for a grant.
Carthy, who is a representative of Irish Vocational Education Association on the SUSI advisory group, said “I was contacted by SUSI recently and there has been a lot of to-ing and fro-ing. We’re hoping to get it resolved as soon as possible.”
“There is a lot of frustration when it comes to these things, with a letter like this there isn’t much you can do.”
Carthy, who has been critical of the system since its inception, said “Any objective observer can see that the system has improved since last year but with a centralised system like this there are always going to be problems.”