Skills, Bills and more graduates?

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International news

THE reports that Ukrainian refugees will be able to study at Scottish universities free of charge and receive living cost support, subject to parliamentary approval.

There are also concerns from Afghan scholars that the Taliban could be moving to close universities until it can restructure university curricula to conform to its religious outlook. The regime has already forced out female faculty members and, in recent weeks, women have been banned from attending academic conferences or participating in graduation ceremonies with men.


Access and Inclusivity

On 7 April the OfS held an insight event: ‘Raising attainment, improving access, securing success’. The event explored the shared challenges and opportunities faced by schools, colleges, universities and third sector organisations as they work together to raise attainment and improve opportunities. You can now watch the recordings of these events and read the insight briefing on the OfS website.

The UK Education Secretary Nadhim Zahawi has stated that there is “systematic” antisemitism in the country’s National Union of Students (NUS), with ministers “looking at every option” in response. The comments were made before the Education Select Committee on 20 April, and come after the NUS announced last week that it would commission an independent investigation into allegations of antisemitism directed at its incoming President, Shaima Dalali. THE has more coverage of the story.



Following the warning from the Institute for Fiscal Studies that the interest rate on student loans could reach 12%, Wonkhe has taken a look at the maintenance support available across the UK nations and how this measures up.


HE policy

This week the Tony Blair Institute for Global Change published a report, making the case for further expanding higher education and aiming for a target of 70% participation by 2040. THE and Wonkhe both offered their own analysis of the report.


Parliamentary affairs

A carry-over motion for The Higher Education (Freedom of Speech) Bill has been tabled for 25 April. The motion will allow the Bill, which is awaiting its third reading, to pass into the next parliamentary session. The Bill aims to extend and strengthen existing legislation intended to uphold freedom of speech and academic freedom in registered higher education providers and students’ unions.  The House of Commons library has a research briefing.

The Skills and Post-16 Education Bill has also passed its report stage and third reading in the Commons, and is now awaiting Royal Assent.


UKRI have apologised to academics after admitting that it contacted the employers of individuals who had made critical comments online about the impact tracking platform Researchfish.

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