Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Education, Thomas Byrne TD, had amendments passed to the Brexit Omnibus Bill, which would seek to protect students from Northern Ireland who study in the Republic.

The amendments, now set to become law, will ensure that UK and Northern Ireland students are treated in the same way as students from the EU and the Republic.

“The government had previously only given this guarantee for students starting in 2019.

“I am delighted that the amendments have been passed and included in the final Bill. Having spoken with many families who have contacted me and our partners in the SDLP it was evident that guarantees were required for students from Northern Ireland beyond 2020. This was a change I have been calling for since 2017.

“Maintaining the flow and mobility of students between North and South is essential. Non-EU fees are charged at a significantly higher rate than EU fees and will undoubtedly place a significant financial barrier in the path of students from Northern Ireland wishing to study south of the border.

“The amendments will give great piece of mind to the students looking to study here and it will bring clarity to their families. There was great cooperation with the many peace initiative and cross border work to integrate communities. Solidifying the ease of cross border education with my amendments will only continue to serve students across our island,” concluded Deputy Byrne.