‘Secondary schoolers not interested in the loan system’

Research by the student organization ISO shows that secondary school pupils do not know much about the loans system. But minister Bussemaker says that’s no reason to panic.

Soon-to-be secondary school graduates are not preoccupied with student finance; however, they are concerned with which study they should choose, she says. ‘’Which study am I going to do, and at which level and in which city?’ These are the questions which exam candidates think about first. It is only after these questions have been dealt with that financial aid comes into the picture’, according to the minister.

random sample of 300 soon-to-be graduates, conducted by ISO and secondary school committee LAKS, found that almost 70 per cent of secondary schoolers did not know how much money they could lend from DUO, the Dutch financial aid organisation, per month, nor were they aware of how long they have a right to study financing.


The Christian Union (ChristenUnie) wants to know what Bussemaker is going to do about this. However, the minister believes that she is already doing enough. In January and February, secondary school students will be further informed, particularly about choosing what to study. From May onwards, the informational campaign will focus on financial orientation and applying for financial aid. Radio, Facebook, other social media, sites such as startstuderen.nl, studiekeuze123.nl and duo.nl will play a role in the campaign focused on financing information.

Students have to be up-to-date with the consequences of student debt, Bussemaker feels. As such, she has launched a calculation tool this year via startstuderen.nl. In short, the minister believes there is enough information available.

According to ISO, proper knowledge about the new system has not reached the students. The student organisation has therefore made a study guide in which secondary school students can read about how it all works.