Students across the country staged a protest on Saturday in Amsterdam’s Museum Square to receive higher compensation for the student loan scheme, which the government is currently in the process of scrapping. Although the new Cabinet is allocating money to students affected by the loan scheme, protesters insist it is not enough.

Last year, politicians agreed to abolish the student loan system. Prior to its entry into force in 2015, students received a basic grant of a few hundred euros per month, which in most cases did not have to be repaid. The basic scholarship will be reinstated in 2023, and students who did not receive the scholarship in the intervening years will be compensated for the additional loans they took.

The decision to abolish the loan system was met with the approval of student unions. However, unions believe the billion euros the Cabinet is allocating to compensate the generation that did not receive the grant is far too little. The Dutch Students’ Union (LSVb) and FNV Young & United calculate that the €1 billion total is an additional €1,000-2,000 per person.

“Our generation should not be victimized by a failed cabinet experiment in government austerity,” the unions said.

The unions’ aim in protesting is to get full compensation up to a basic scholarship for their entire study period –– and also to compensate students who did not take out loans, according to a member of LSVb cited in AT5.

Education Minister Robbert Dijkgraaf reacted to the Museumplein protest by posting a statement on Twitter, saying he wanted to discuss “other things” the Cabinet can do for the generation of students who don’t have not received a scholarship, according to NOS. Dijkgraaf added that he wanted to have an open conversation with the initiators of the protest.

Students who have taken out loans under the current system have been dubbed “the unlucky generation” by CDA.