Dear Vice-Chancellor or Principal
This note provides an update on OFFA business and publications following the announcement of a General Election on 8 June 2017.
Impact on 2018-19 access agreement process
The deadline of noon on 26 April 2017 for submission of 2018-19 access agreements was unaffected. If you have not submitted your access agreement and resource plan, please contact us urgently.
The student finance package (including fee caps) for the 2018-19 academic year was not published at the time we issued our strategic guidance on developing your 2018-19 access agreement (OFFA publication 2017/01). In this guidance, we indicated that we would contact institutions once the announcement had been made by Government with information on how to reflect any changes to access agreements and resource plans.
We do not expect to receive confirmation of the 2018-19 student finance package until after the conclusion of the democratic process and this will be subject to future Government policy. We will contact you again once the fee caps for 2018-19 have been confirmed regarding any necessary alterations to 2018-19 access agreements and resource plans.
In the meantime we will continue to assess access agreements in line with our previously published timescales and based on the maximum fee caps for 2017-18.
Financial support evaluation tools
We had planned to publish additional online guidance in May to support institutions in using the financial support evaluation tools that we released in December 2016. However, due to Government guidelines on what public bodies may publish in the period immediately before a General Election, publication of this guidance will be delayed until after the election. For further information on the financial support evaluation tools, see our guidance note Understanding the impact of institutional financial support on student success (20 March 2017).
Impact on 2015-16 monitoring process
We have now concluded our monitoring processes for access agreements in the 2015-16 academic year. We will now publish our reports on the outcomes of that monitoring after the General Election.
For further information
If you have a query about anything in this guidance note, please contact your institution’s policy adviser or call OFFA on 0117 931 7171.
Professor Les Ebdon CBE DL
Director of Fair Access to Higher Education