Drop in new TELS awards and National Toppers scholarships and qualifying mark moved up from 200 to 250 next year

Drop in new TELS awards and National Toppers scholarships and qualifying mark moved up from 200 to 250 next year

By Vijay Narayan
Monday 20/07/2020
Tertiary students in during lectures. [image: usp]

The government has taken a number of measures to streamline its capital spending in the 2020/2021 National Budget including what it calls belt-tightening measures for the National Toppers and Tertiary Education Loan Scheme, suspension of civil service scholarship and local postgraduate scholarship programme and the temporary suspension of the Parenthood Assistance Programme.

According to the next government budget, 130 new National Toppers Scholarships for MBBS, oral health and surgery will be suspended along with 20 new National Toppers overseas scholarships.

For TELS, 130 new awards for MBBS, oral and dental, and 10 new awards for the Pilot Training Programme will be suspended.

The TELS qualifying marks based on Year 13 results has been raised from 200 to 250.

TELS technical college students’ entry age will also be increased from 15 years to 17 years.

The Ministry of Economy confirms the civil service scholarship and local postgraduate scholarship programmes will be suspended in 2020-2021 and all graduate student allowances will also be removed from the next financial year.

It has also been announced that the Parenthood Assistance Programme has been temporarily put on hold pending further review, and the guaranteed cane price for sugar has been reduced from $85 to $70 per tonne.

The Ministry also says that while the government has scaled down a number of programmes in the 2020-2021 National Budget, it will continue with existing initiatives and introduce new measures to support the unemployed, the small and medium businesses and tourism.

The government has allocated around $100 million funding support for the unemployment assistance scheme.

Around $30 million is allocated for the small and medium business loan programme in the next financial year.

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