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)

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

Brett Alexander Jones is wanted on several warrants province-wide, in connection with multiple charges. Jan. 21, 2021. Kitimat RCMP photo
Kitimat RCMP searching for man wanted on several warrants province-wide

Jones is described as a five-foot 10-inches Caucasian man, with blond hair and blue eyes.

That’s Houston physician Dr. Stefanie Steel receiving her first dose of the Pfizer vaccine Jan. 19, 2021 from RN nurse manager Cindy Cockle. (Northern Health photo)
First Houston vaccinations take place

Long term care residents, health care workers on list

Administering naloxone to a person experiencing a benzo-related overdose event won’t help. Naloxone is used to neutralize opioids. (Jenna Hauck/The Progress file photo)
Northern Health warning drug users of potential benzo contamination

The drug does not respond to naloxone, and is being included in street drugs

COVID-19 exposure reported at Houston Secondary. (Houston Today photo)
COVID-19 exposure reported at Houston Secondary School

Self-monitoring for symptoms encouraged

Businesses continue to struggle under COVID-19 restrictions as the pandemic reaches the one-year mark. (B.C. government)
Another 564 COVID-19 cases, mass vaccine plan coming Friday

15 more deaths, community cluster declared in Williams Lake

Darlene Curylo scratched a $3M ticket, BCLC’s largest ever scratch and win prize. (BCLC)
Kelowna woman in shock after winning BCLC’s largest-ever instant-ticket prize

Darlene Curylo couldn’t believe her eyes when she saw the amount of money she’d won from a scratch ticket

While each person has different reasons for becoming homeless, a UBCO study shows they learn through their interactions with different services to perform ‘as homeless’ based on the expectations of service providers. (Contributed)
Kelowna homeless forced to ‘perform’ for resources, says UBCO study

One participant in the study said ‘It is about looking homeless, but not too homeless’

Gov. Gen. Julie Payette takes the royal salute from the Guard of Honour as she makes her way deliver the the throne speech, Wednesday, September 23, 2020 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Fred Chartrand
Gov. Gen. Julie Payette resigns, apologizes for ‘tensions’ at Rideau Hall

Payette, who is the Queen’s representative in Canada, has been the governor general since 2017

Grounded WestJet Boeing 737 Max aircraft are shown at the airline’s facilities in Calgary, Alta., Tuesday, May 7, 2019. WestJet will operate the first commercial Boeing 737 Max flight in Canada today since the aircraft was grounded in 2019 following two deadly crashes. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
Passengers unfazed as WestJet returns Boeing 737 Max to service on Vancouver flight

After a lengthy review process, Transport Canada cleared the plane to return to Canadian airspace

The top part of the fossil burrow, seen from the side, with feathery lines from the disturbance of the soil – thought to be caused by the worm pulling prey into the burrow. (Paleoenvironntal Sediment Laboratory/National Taiwan University)
PHOTOS: SFU researchers find evidence of ‘giant’ predatory worms on ocean floor

Fossils found the prove the existence of an ancient Taiwanese worm as long as two metres

RCMP officers provide policing for 63 B.C. municipalities under a provincial formula based on population. (Black Press file photo)
B.C. communities warned of upcoming RCMP unionization costs

Starting salaries for city police officers are 30% higher

(Pxhere)
B.C. nurse suspended after using Tensor bandage to trap long-term care patient in room

Susan Malloch voluntarily agreed to a three-day suspension of her certificate of registration

Abbotsford’s Skully White (left), who donated his kidney in December, has started a campaign to find other recipients and donors. The first candidate is retired police officer Gavin Quon. White owns and operates a hotdog stand, Lullys Food Experience, out of the Abbotsford Canadian Tire parking lot. (Facebook photo)
After donating his kidney, Abbotsford hotdog king starts donor campaign

Skully White donated his kidney to customer Tim Hiscock in December

Most Read