More than 40 per cent of successful applicants for student grants in Dublin last year came from just three postal districts, new figures from Student Universal Support Ireland (Susi) show.
A breakdown of allocations within the county for the academic year 2014-15 reveals that the highest number of grants awarded went to school-leavers in the postal district of Co Dublin, covering areas outside of the city boundaries.
This was followed by Dublin 15 and Dublin 24, both of which are notably home to institutes of technology in the case of Blanchardstown and Tallaght respectively.
The figures show there are far fewer applications from middle class areas such as Dublin 4 - with just 170 Susi applicants last year compared with 1,323 in Dublin 15 - but the award rate is roughly the same at close to 60 per cent.
, head of communications and customer service at Susi, said the figures indicated “there are a lot of people self-assessing and not applying” where their family income exceeded the eligibility threshold.
He pointed out that areas with a very high participation rates in third-level education - notably Dublin 6, Dublin 4 and Dublin 6W - had relatively low numbers applying for grants.
“This means that people are informed they are not eligible,” he said.
He added that the figures showed Susi was helping the people it was primarily meant to help, noting that the organisation had run outreach programmes to raise further awareness about entitlements.
An aspect of the figures that may cause concern, however, is the very low number of school-leavers applying for grants in relatively disadvantaged areas such as Dublin 10 (Ballyfermot) and Dublin 17 (Coolock).
Only 310 people applied to Susi last year in Dublin 10, 199 of whom were successful. Some 256 people applied in Dublin 17, 178 of whom were successful.
The two areas were shown last year to have the lowest level of participation in third-level education in the country, with just 15 per cent of school-leavers in Dublin 17 advancing to higher education and 16 per cent of those in Dublin 10 advancing, according to the Higher Education Authority (HEA).
The HEA figures do not include school- leavers advancing to centres of further education – such as Ballyfermot College or Coláiste Dhúlaigh, which are located in the two districts.
However, the Susi figures do include grants allocated for studying in further education.
Data published by The Irish Timesearlier this week showed that students in Dublin were much less likely to get a student grant than their counterparts in rural Ireland.
More than 35,000 CAO applicants had accepted an offer for college places by yesterday afternoon, which represents 67 per cent of the 52,028 applicants who received a round one offer.
Applicants have until 5.15pm Monday, August 24th, to record their acceptance.