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Queen's University
 

OSAP Appeals

Reviews of Ontario Distance Grants

 

Situations That are not Considered

There are no reviews for situations such as the following:

Student chooses to attend an institution that is more than 80 kilometers away from home when there is an institution of the same type within 80 kilometers from home;

  • Student chooses to attend an institution more than 80 kilometers from home because he or she was not accepted in a program of choice at an institution less than 80 kilometers from home;
  • Student lives less than 80 kilometers from a postsecondary institution of the type the student is attending, but has chosen a program that is not offered at that institution, except in the case of students who are continuing their education in French at bilingual or French language institutions (see below).
  • Student’s permanent address or parent’s home address changes during the study period;
  • Driving route is less than 80 kilometers but route of public transportation (e.g., bus) is indirect and greater than 80 kilometers. 

Students commuting more than 250 kilometers

If the ministry’s distance calculation determines that a student is commuting more than 250 kilometers one way, the student will be issued a ministry-generated paragraph on the Notice of Assessment or Notice of Reassessment explaining that the ministry has determined that it is unlikely that the student is traveling daily to the institution and as a result, the student has not been assessed for the Ontario Distance Grant – Commuting. Additionally, if the student is commuting this distance daily, the student is advised to contact their financial aid office to initiate a review to prove that he or she meets the Ontario Distance Grant – Commuting criteria.

A commuting distance of more than 250 kilometers may be calculated erroneously, for example, in situations where the distance calculation is based on the main campus of a college or university and the student is attending a satellite campus that is nearer to home.

While it is unlikely that a student would be commuting more than 250 kilometers one-way to attend postsecondary studies, students who are found through the review to be commuting at least 80 kilometers are eligible for the Commuting Grant.

The FAA is required to confirm the actual driving distance between the student’s home address and the address of the postsecondary institution campus that the student is attending.

Documentation required:

  • If the commuting distance is confirmed to be greater than 250 kilometers:  
  • For married students and sole-support parents, a letter from the student attesting to the fact that he or she is commuting that distance; or
  • For single students, a letter from the student and the students’ parents attesting to the fact that he or she is commuting that distance and is living at home with his or her parents during the study period; and
  • Documentation that proves that the student is commuting 80 kilometers or more (i.e., a postal code to postal code check on Google maps).

 

Students Maintaining Second Residence (Married/Sole Support)

Currently, students who are married/common law or a sole support parents will be assessed for the Commuting Grant if their home address is more than 80 kilometers and less than 250 kilometers from the institution they are attending, regardless of whether or not the student is maintaining a separate residence from his or her family.

Under this review a student who is married/common-law or a sole support parent and has a home address that is more than 250 kilometers away from the institution they attend, would be eligible for the Commuting Grant, if the student actually commutes or if the student maintains a secondary residence closer to the institution. In cases where the student maintains a secondary residence, it is expected that they would be travelling regularly and frequently to their home to be with their spouse and/or children.

Documentation required:

  • Documentation that proves that the student’s permanent home address is 80 kilometers or more away from the institution they attend (i.e., a postal code to postal code check on Google maps); and
  • Documentation that proves that the student’s spouse and/or children are living at the permanent address during the study period.

     

    Miscalculation of Commuting/Travelling Distance

    There may be situations where the distance calculator used in the assessment process miscalculates a distance and does not identify a driving distance that is more than 80 kilometers one-way between student’s home address and the nearest postsecondary institution of the type the student is attending.

    • For the travel grant, the student must be a dependent student living away from home during the study period;
    • For the commuting grant, the single dependent or independent student must be living at home with his or her parents during the study period.

     

    Single Dependent Student - Local Address Reported as Permanent Address

    While dependent students are expected to report their parent’s home address as their permanent address when they move away from home to attend postsecondary studies, some dependent students may provide their local address on their OSAP application form. To consider these students for an Ontario Distance Grant – Travel, the FAA must confirm the following:

    • Parents’ home address;
    • Driving distance from parent’s home address to the nearest postsecondary institution of the type the student is attending; and 
    • Driving distance from parent’s home address to the postsecondary institution the student is attending.

    Documentation Required:

    • A letter from the student and the student’s parents confirming the parents’ address; and
    • Documentation that proves that the student is commuting 80 kilometers or more (i.e., a postal code to postal code check on Google Maps)

     

    Single Dependent Student Commuting and Family Breakdown

    If a single dependent student is commuting more than 80 kilometers and is not living at home due to a family breakdown, the student may be considered for a commuting grant:

    The FAA must confirm the following:

    • There is no postsecondary institution of the type the student is attending within 80 kilometers of the student’s permanent address; and
    • The student is eligible for a family breakdown review.

    Documentation Required:

    • If the student has met the requirements for a family breakdown review no further documentation is required.

    Kingston, Ontario, Canada. K7L 3N6. 613.533.2000