Last March, the Netherlands held elections for the House of Representatives. Currently, all parties are working to form a new government that will set the policies for the next four years. Previously, students in the Netherlands received a monthly grant while studying, but since 2015 students largely have to rely on loans to finance their studies and just a small group of students are eligible to receive possible top-up grants to finance their studies. This system has been widely criticized. Due to increasing study debts, students make financially motivated choices during their studies instead of what is best for their development. Students also find it difficult to buy a house when finished with their studies and experience stress due to the study loans which influences their well-being. In order to improve student life, now is the time to change the policy and replace the loan system for an adequate grant.
ESU is strongly in favour of the establishment of grant systems over loan systems. Loan systems only reflect a failure by the state to provide a sufficient grant system and public services while grants are the most preferable way to invest in the future of the citizens. Only with the implementation of an adequate grant system, a government can ensure accessible education for all groups of students because it does not force students to build up debt.
And thus, ESU supports the LSVb and ISO in their call upon the Dutch government to replace the loan system with an adequate grant for students, while also reasonably compensating the students who missed out on the grants since 2015.
Proposed by: LSVb & ISO
Seconded by: VVS, USI, ÖH