Saturday, November 18th, 2017

Reminder: 30% offset of Ontario tuition fees requires that you ask

“Money you don’t have to repay, designed for students entering a public college or university program from high school, or within four years of graduating from high school. You can apply for this program without applying for OSAP.”

So says the website of the Ontario Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities.  Last year in the lead-up to the fall election, the Ontario government announced a revamped grant program that would be broadly available and replace existing more specific grants.  Note that tuition fees are not reduced, but rather you have to apply for a grant through the OSAP website.

The grant will be a non-repayable rebate to help full-time Ontario students offset tuition costs for up to 4 years. The grant will be worth 30 per cent of average tuition fees for first-entry non-professional programs and will increase each year as tuition rises. For two terms beginning in fall 2012, the grant pays:

  • $1,680 a year for students in a degree program at a college or university
  • $770 a year for students in a certificate or diploma program at a college

You are eligible for the grant if you meet all of the following criteria:

  • A Canadian Citizen, Permanent Resident or Protected Person;
  • An Ontario resident (as of the start of your current study period, Ontario is the last province in which you, your spouse or parent resided for 12 consecutive months without being a full-time post-secondary student);
  • A full-time student (minimum 60 per cent of a full course-load as defined by your university or college);
    • If you are a student with a disability, you are eligible if you are enrolled in minimum 40 per cent of a full course-load.
  • Been out of high school for four years or less;
    • If you are a student with a disability, you are eligible if you are out of high school for six years or less.
  • In satisfactory academic standing;
  • In a first-entry program at an Ontario public university or college – this is a program that can be applied to and entered directly from high school – including any first-entry professional program such as engineering, commerce or architecture, but excluding second-entry professional programs (medicine, law, dentistry, optometry, pharmacy, veterinary, teacher training);
  • Not currently restricted from receiving OSAP due to default, misrepresentation, fraud or second overpayment (students must clear restriction to access grant);
  • From a family with a combined parental income before taxes in 2010 of less than $160,000.

The application process requires information from the most recent parental tax returns, parents’ SINs and parents signatures to authorize the exchange of data with the Canada Revenue Agency.  Applications can be started and saved online if you cannot complete them all at once.

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