Belfast Telegraph

College waives student's fees as complaint is settled

By Staff Reporter

A Northern Ireland college agreed to waive a year of course fees after a complaint by a student.

The student at the South Eastern Regional College alleged that he had been misinformed about the total cost of his fees.

He began a diploma in automotive management in September 2015.

The course fees were £552 for Year 1 and £450 for Year 2.

He stated that many of the other students on the course applied under an apprenticeship scheme which meant they didn't pay any fees.

The complainant alleged that he was not made aware of this until the end of the first year.

He believed that he would have been eligible for the scheme.

He also said that he was told the total cost was £552, and that he only found out later there would be fees for the second year of £450.

The case was referred to the Northern Ireland Public Services Ombudsman.

Details of the incident are carried in its report, published yesterday.

The Ombudsman found that the complainant was misinformed by the college about the total cost of the course.

There was also evidence of poor record keeping, including whether or not he was told about the apprenticeship scheme.

The Ombudsman suggested to the college that it should waive the second year fees of £450. This was agreed.

The student reported he was happy with the settlement.

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