Agency blames computer for late grants

Delays in grant payments to further education students have been attributed by the Student Awards Agency for Scotland to a new computer system and the non-delivery of mail on Saturday as postal workers marked the funeral of Diana, Princess of Wales.

Motherwell College appears to be the worst hit. Only 74 students had received their cheques by Wednesday, against an expected 350. "There is a severe danger of a haemorrhaging of students," Richard Millham, the principal, stated.

This is the second year problems have arisen. A spokesman for the agency said it had run into "a few teething problems" and promised cheques for the students who are on higher national courses would be received within the week.

But only four additional grants had arrived at Motherwell by Wednesday.

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