SAAS 2020-2021: Your Questions Answered

Page Updated: 28/05/2020 at 17:29

Because of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, many young people have expressed feelings of concern and uncertainty around the funding of their studies for the next academic year. We've collected the most up-to-date advice from the Scottish Government and the Student Awards Agency Scotland here so you can rest assured knowing that you have the latest information.

Will SAAS still be accepting funding applications for the 2020-2021 academic year?

Applications for funding in 2020/2021 are open as usual from the 1st of April 2020

Yes! You are encouraged to apply as soon as possible and make sure your application is received before 30th June to guarantee your funding is in place for the start of your course.

How do I apply?

SAAS has a shiny new website which has just launched, making applications easier than ever before. Visit the website to find out what information you'll need and to start your application.

Submit your application by the end of April to redeem 1250 rewards points and enter a prize draw to win a brand new laptop!

Infographic showing points available

Are any funding provisions affected by COVID-19?

Unfortunately, SAAS is not currently accepting applications for the Part-Time Fee Grant (PTFG). The PTFG is a fee grant provided to learning providers, and SAAS are continuing to work with providers to minimise the disruption caused by this. The eligibility and scheme rules have not changed. All other funding schemes, including regular student loans, the Disabled Student Allowance, the Nursing and Midwifery Student Bursary, and the Care Experienced Student Bursary, remain unaffected.

SAAS are currently trialling a solution that would allow them to offer the PTFG again and will provide an update on this soon.

Due to COVID-19, I have either had to end my accommodation lease early to return home or have had to extend the end of my lease to remain in my accommodation. Will my university or provider allow this?

If you are living in purpose-built student accommodation, and you want to end your tenancy because of the coronavirus outbreak, the amount of notice you need to give your landlord will depend on when you moved into the accommodation:

  • before 27 May 2020 - then you will need to give your landlord 7 days notice that you are going to leave the accommodation
  • on or after 27 May 2020 - then you will need to give your landlord 28 days notice that you are going to leave the accommodation

The notice has to be in writing, and the tenancy will come to an end after the last day of the notice period.

If you live in halls of residence then you are likely a common law tenant and you will have signed a tenancy agreement when you moved in which will say what you are allowed to do. For more information and advice on student accommodation and tenancy agreements you can visit Shelter Scotland's website.

If my exams are delayed until later in the year or my course is extended by a few months, will I continue to receive funding?

It's hard to assess the full impact of COVID-19 right now. Individual colleges and universities should prepare mitigation plans to minimise the impact on the delivery of teaching. If any changes are made to timetables, further communications will be issued about student support. The best thing to do right now is to keep a close eye on the website and social media channels for both your institution and SAAS for the latest updates.

The Scottish Government has made a £5 million emergency hardship fund available to students. Students can apply for hardship discretionary payments to their institution, check with your college or university on how to do this.

Where can I find more information?

You can find the most up-to-date information on the SAAS website. Some useful links include information for students, information for parents and carers, and more FAQs about how COVID-19 affects funding.

You can find the latest medical advice on NHS Inform. Visit The Scottish Government's COVID-19 website for more Government guidance.

For more information about the coronavirus from Young Scot, visit our landing page.