Students in Norway with part-time jobs are to be offered for the first time access to student loans to protect their income should they fall ill, announced the government on Monday.
From next summer students on sick leave from their non-academic work can also get access to grants from the Norwegian State Educational Loan Fund.
The income protection is part of a proposal the Norwegian government will present in October.
The rules today state if a student with part-time work receives sickness benefits from Nav, the individual does not have the right to get a sickness grant from the Norwegian State Educational Loan Fund. The Norwegian government wants to change this.
Conservative MP Henrik Asheim said: “There are many students working part-time today. It seems unreasonable that students who are ill and cannot work, and therefore receive sickness benefit, do not have the same rights to apply to the Norwegian State Educational Loan Fund as students who do not have a part-time job. The government suggests making it possible to combine sickness allowance funds from the government benefit system, with a sickness grant from the Norwegian State Educational Loan Fund.”
Asheim believes the change will result in 1,750 more students being able to receive sickness grants. The sickness grant from the Norwegian State Educational Loan Fund will be balanced against the money that the student receives from Nav.
Norsk Studentorganisasjon (National Student Union of Norway) has for a long time argued for the move.