From regulating Covid to regulating student finance?

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Following the (Westminster) government’s announcement of the lifting of legal restrictions in England, the Department for Education published updated Covid-19 operational guidance this week for the higher education sector. Wonkhe has an analysis of the changes.

Augar response

THE reports on Westminster’s government unveiling of major changes to student finance. These changes were announced as part of the government’s wider response to the Augar review of post-18 education.

As part of the launch of the Government's response to the post-18 review into higher education, Minister Donelan delivered a speech at the Centre for Policy Studies.

The London Economics have done early modelling on the economic costs associated with the changes to student support arrangements which can be found here.

Regulatory and governance

In Parliament, Secretary of State Nadhim Zahawi made a statement on significant regulatory reform work being taken forward with the Office for Students.

The Information Commissioner’s Office have published draft guidance on making use of the provisions within the UK GDPR and the DPA 2018 (UK DP laws) which apply to processing personal data for purposes relating to research.

Levelling up

Levelling up minister, Neil O’Brien, answered a question on what assessment he has made of the potential impact of purpose-built student housing on house prices in Bath.


The QAA reports that a survey linked to the review of external examination practice received responses from 44 higher education institutions, and over 170 individuals engaged with one of four roundtable discussion events held across December 2021 and January 2022.


The Universities Superannuation Scheme (USS) Joint Negotiating Committee (JNC) voted to proceed with Universities UK's (UUK) proposed package of reforms to conclude the 2020 valuation of the scheme.

EDI and Widening Participation

HESA has published the UK performance indicators for widening participation in 2020/21. Of the 176 providers in the data set, 122 had over 90 per cent of entrants from state schools.

Susan Daniels OBE, Chief Executive of the National Deaf Children's Society explores in a piece written for AdvanceHE what the British Sign Language Bill could mean for deaf students.

Transforming Access and Student Outcomes (TASO) has announced it will be working with the Brilliant Club and the University of Cambridge to design, validate, and pilot a questionnaire that can be used to evaluate the success of widening participation initiatives in universities.

Student experience and wellbeing

The Department for Business, Energy, and Industrial Strategy published its annual fuel poverty statistics report yesterday. Wonkhe have identified that households which have students in full time education as the household reference person (HRP) are most likely to be in fuel poverty, along with households where the HRP is unemployed.

The Scottish government have distributed £5m to assist HE students struggling with the current cost of living, and the Scottish higher education minister has written to universities and colleges to encourage them to prioritise the students most in need.

International news

THE has a piece on the response of Ukraine’s universities to the Russian invasion.

The BBC reports that the number of students coming to the UK from America has risen by 50 per cent post-Brexit.

THE has a piece exploring how lawmakers in half of the US states are moving to block lessons on race and politics in the college curriculum.

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