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The rise in the price of credit and cuts in scholarships lead to greater university dropout

Related image” Spain is among the most expensive countries to pursue higher education , and has a scholarship system located among the weakest and most insufficient of the OECD countries.” This is how the high rate of university dropout during the first year of the degree in our country explains from the Conference of rectors of Spanish universities (Crue).

The number of students enrolled in the universities has been reduced, from 2011 to 2015, by 92,760 people. And according to the latest study carried out by the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sport, Data and Figures of the Spanish University System. Course 2015-2016′- with cohort of new admission in the 2010/2011 academic year, the rate of university students leaving the following year their studies in public presecial universities was 16.9%, a fact that has been increasing. Specifically, 17.8% of the students who began their studies at the university in 2011/2012 did not enroll in the second year.

In addition, according to the analysis made by Crue ‘The Spanish University in Figures 2014/2015’ based on official data, the dropout rate in university students with admission in 2012/2013 decreased to 17.39%. But this figure was not able to consolidate and with an income cohort in 2013/2014 -the last year for which data exist- it went back up to 17.83%. A trend that, according to 20 minutes Ana García, general secretary of the Student Union, is expected to increase “due to the great difficulties that working families have to access university studies.”

Even worse is the figure if we talk about general terms, that is, without segmenting the study to public, private, face-to-face or non-presential universities. So much so that in the year 2011/2012, 19% of the students left the race before finishing the first cycle (first and second year) and in the year 2013/2014 it was 22.5% of the university students.

Also, the number of students enrolled in Spanish universities has been reduced. From the year 2011/2012, period in which it reached the maximum of the last years (1,456,783 students), 92,760 less income have been processed, passing a total of 1,364,023 in 2014/2015. “Access to higher education in Spain is comparable, or even lower, to that of all the developed countries in our environment,” said Crue.

From 800 to more than 1,000 euros per enrollment in five years

With these statistics on the hand, it only remains to ask the reason. One of them: the increase in the average price of credit- a registration is at least 60-. According to official data published by the Ministry, from 2009 to 2015, in public universities rose almost five euros on average, from 13.85 to 18.51. Even, depending on the autonomous community and the study center, up to 22.39 euros could be paid for each one. For this reason, the payment of entrance in the university happened to cost about 800 euros of average to surpass the 1,100 in five years.

One euro per credit and sixty per enrollment – as long as there are no pending subjects – is what increases the cost of the course each year that passes. “A few years ago you could study a career paying 700 or 800 euros a year and now that’s practically impossible, average rates exceed 1,000 euros on average and there are races that exceed 2,000 a year, and this has left out many students only for not being able to pay it, “says García.

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According to the report published by the Rectors’ Conference, all autonomous communities have increased their public prices for teaching in public universities from 2008/2009 to 2014/2015. Galicia rose with less intensity (+ 5.1%), followed by Andalusia (+ 9.7%) and Catalonia reached maximum levels with a rise of 158%, ahead of the Community of Madrid (+ 117.3%) and the Valencian Community (+ 93%).

Average funding of 2,637 euros per scholar

Without resources but with hope, every year thousands of students ask for public subsidies to the Government, general or mobility scholarships that help them to pay, at least, the price of tuition. But these aids have hardened in recent years “since the decree of scholarships approved by the Popular Party -segmented in two parts: general, according to family income and variable, according to the qualifications obtained-, which affect” exclusively working families “, declares Ana García.

There are more fellows but with a lower average endowment. They face more precariousness In the 2014/2015 academic year, according to the data of the European Commission, only 27% of the undergraduate students received study grants in the public universities, a fact much lower than that of most countries in the region. European Union. Regarding the average funding per grant holder (€ 2,637) , it has returned to levels of the academic year 2006/2007, very far from the amount of € 3,256 per scholarship holder registered in 2012/2013.

“All in all, there is a greater number of scholarship recipients than at the time of the negative effects of the crisis, but with a lower average endowment, which is why the fellows face greater precariousness, ” they say from Crue. “The people who have to move from their community to another because in their city or town does not exist, they have to face a series of expenses – rent a room, transport or food – and evidently the amounts that the Ministry gives to People who exceed hardened criteria often do not reach them. “