EU students will still receive free tuition in Scotland after Brexit, says Scottish deputy minister
The SNPs conference was today, and Scotland's deputy first minister, John Swinney has promised that EU students will still receive free tuition, even after Brexit.
It comes after a similar pledge from Westminster: Universities minister, Jo Johnson has promised that Eu students arriving by Autumn 2017 will be able to stay at English Universities for the duration of their course, as well as being eligible for loans and grants.
It is understood that the pledge by Swinney will potentially cost the Scottish government approximately £300 million.
Swinney, who is also Scotland's education secretary, cast doubt as to whether UK ministers will allow EU students to stay for the duration of their course, which can last up to five years, depending on the course.
A policy that was scrapped by the Tory-Lib Dem coalition is currently being reassessed which would allow certain universities to provide short-term, post-study work visas.
Swinney also accused certain ministers as using EU citizens as bargaining chips. He said:
“They are not cards to be played, they are human beings. To use them as negotiating chips is obscene and we will have no part of it.”
This is after some UK ministers have suggested that the rights of EU citizens would depend on how Brits living elsewhere in the EU are treated.
It appears that Scotland don't want to be outdone by the UK and will be the place to go for students looking for places.