Very few students receive this bonus: thousands more could soon receive it

Every month, many young people could benefit from additional financial assistance.

Very few students receive this bonus: thousands more could soon receive it

Every month, many young people could benefit from additional financial assistance.

For tens of thousands of young people, embarking on higher education means falling into precariousness. Many of them do not have the financial means necessary to live properly. If the aid paid by the State mainly allows for accommodation, meals are meager, when they are not skipped. And it's difficult to find leisure time.

To bring some money into the bank account, every year 1.2 million students have a job alongside their studies. This represents 40% of the 3 million young people enrolled in higher education. After a day of classes, between two visits to lecture halls or on the weekend, many of them go to babysit, put on shelves in supermarkets, go behind the counter of a café, prepare orders or even make deliveries.

On average, these students work a little more than 10 hours per week, in addition to their university studies. Generally, these positions are paid the minimum wage. Between working time and remuneration, around €400 is received each month by these young people with a busy schedule. Just enough to cushion the financial situation in the red. But while several financial aids already exist, a new one could come into force.

Created in 2015, the activity bonus is paid in addition to salary to the lowest-income workers. On average, between €150 and €200 extra are granted each month. A system to which most working students are not entitled. And for good reason. To benefit from it, you must receive, at least, each month, 78% of the minimum wage, or €1,091 net per month since January 1st.

This minimum remuneration could be lowered to 65% of the minimum wage in the coming months, or €909.15 net per month. The proposal was made by Les Républicains MP Stéphane Viry. The National Assembly will study its text in a few weeks. For the elected official, "it is essential that the Nation recognizes the efforts made by these students who find the strength to work while continuing their studies."

However, this new threshold, if it were to be applied, would not allow the majority of working students to receive the activity bonus. 62% of 19-24 year olds who study and work earn less than €1000 per month, of which almost 40% do not earn more than €500 per month. The impact of such a measure would therefore be very limited because only around 10% of student workers would enter the system with this reduction in the minimum required.

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