B.C. Finance Minister Carole James announced a new post-secondary grant during the revealing of the provincial government’s 2020 budget. (Tom Fletcher/News Staff)

Budget 2020: B.C. unveils new grant for students, phases out debt-relief program

For the first time, diploma, certificate students qualify for yearly post-secondary grant

The B.C. government’s 2020 budget includes the first new post-secondary grant in 15 years.

The BC Access Grant will replace a series of debt-relief completion grants for students, the provincial government unveiled in its latest budget on Tuesday.

The new grant will offer $1,000 annually for “immediate support” for students in degree, diploma and certificate programs.

The provincial grant coincides with the Canada Access Grant, together offering up to $4,000 per year per student.

READ ALSO: 800 former youth in care are using B.C.’s free post-secondary tuition program

The expansive grant will be funded with reinvested money from completion grants, which provided roughly $3,400 per year on average to about 20,000 students in the highest-cost degree programs.

The province is investing an additional $24 million over three years into the new access grants, spread among more than 40,000 college and university students.

Recipients will qualify entirely on household income with a mission to open doors for low and middle income families. This follows the 2019 decision to eliminate interest on B.C. students’ loans and other post-secondary initiatives, including the free tuition for former youth in care.

Notably, the new grant also opens to doors to shorter programs – less than two years in length – as well as part-time students.

The government’s 2019-2020 budget includes a $203-million surplus with key changes including higher tax revenues and lower refundable tax credits.

READ ALSO: Students give two thumbs up to no more B.C. student loan interest



nina.grossman@blackpress.ca

Follow us on Instagram
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

B.C. Budget 2020

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Northern Health ready for COVID-19 surge

Health authority confident with inventory of ventilators

How to cope with your mental health during a global pandemic

Becca Shears, clinical counsellor in Vanderhoof speaks about ways to deal with stress and anxiety during this time.

MP for Cariboo-Prince George writes a letter to residents amidst COVID-19

‘Partisan politics have no place in a pandemic,’ writes MP Todd Doherty

‘An extra $220 every 90 days’: B.C. patients pay more dispensing fees due to prescription limits

Kelowna woman says it’s outrageous to charge for refills every 30 days

Sinclar Group curtailing all sawmill operations temporarily

Nechako Lumber, Apollo Forest Products and Lakeland Mills to be curtailed for three weeks starting April 5.

‘Hold our line’: 29 new cases of COVID-19 announced in B.C.

Saturday’s number of new cases marks the lowest in weeks.

Two inmates found positive for COVID-19 at federal prison in B.C.; other tests pending

15 staff self-isolating waiting results, refusal to work notice sent, says correctional officer

Critic, workers’ group ‘disappointed’ Trudeau chose Amazon to distribute PPE

Amazon Canada said in an email to The Canadian Press that it is working with Canada Post, Purolator

Full World COVID-19 update: National Guard collect ventilators in New York; Spain, Italy improve

Comprehensive coronavirus update with news from around the world.

Two people fined after B.C. police spot online ads re-selling 5,000 surgical, N95 masks

Police confiscated the masks, being sold at inflated prices, and now working with Fraser Health

Sex workers face new risks during COVID-19 pandemic

‘Desperation has kicked in’ for vulnerable, undocumented workers unable to access help

Unclear if Cowichan couple refusing to self-isolate will face penalty

No fines or charges have been laid to date, including Cowichan couple who won’t self isolate

COVID-19: Postponed surgeries will be done, B.C. health minister says

Contract with private surgical clinic to help clear backlog

Most Read