Netherlands : Students protest at funding cuts

Some 1,500 students demonstrated outside the parliamentary buildings in The Hague on Monday to protest at the government’s plans to cut student funding.
At the moment, students can claim a grant for four years but the government is planning to reduce this to three.

At the same time, ministers want to increase the tuition fees to up to €5,000 for students who take longer than the recommended number of years to complete their degree. This will also apply to students who have spent part of their degree course abroad.

Universities and colleges will also face cuts in government funding if their students are too slow.

Eleven years

On Monday, the two coalition parties, VVD and CDA, voted in favour of the plan. The anti-Islam PVV also voted with the government.

Meanwhile, the Volkskrant reports economic affairs minister Maxime Verhagen took 11 years to finish his history degree. Prime minister Mark Rutte took seven years to finish his.

And junior education minister Halbe Zijlstra took seven years to complete his higher education, the paper claims. According to his cv, the minister has an hbo college diploma in marketing followed by a university degree in sociology.

There were also demonstrations in Groningen, where Zijlstra was a student.

© DutchNews.


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