Québec Ombudsman’s special report on Student Financial Assistance

Québec Ombudsman’s special report on Student Financial Assistance

On March 3, 2022, Québec Ombudsman released a special report on how the public student financial assistance system (AFE) is managed. The report describes what needs to be done to correct the lack of transparency and listening.

The investigation showed that:

  • Overall, the information provided to students is insufficient.
  • Handling of certain files is not standardized, and this creates unfairness.
  • When AFE deems that students have misrepresented their situation, they are excluded from the Loans and Bursaries Program for two years. Despite the gravity of this consequence, they are not given the opportunity to clarify or complete their initial explanations. As a result, they are deprived of the financial assistance which they might be eligible for.

The Québec Ombudsman made 22 recommendations to the Ministère de l’Enseignement supérieur and one to the Minister. The main purpose of the recommendations is for AFE to comply with the obligation to handle all the applications it receives fairly.

For more information, see the Québec Ombudsman’s website.

Forum of Canadian Ombudsman