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As has been widely reported almost three-quarters of universities declaring fees to date are proposing a £9,000 flat rate from the next academic year.
Whilst most Higher Education Institutions will have fee waivers and bursary schemes in place for the poorer students, the Office for Fair Access (Offa) is currently assessing the detailed access agreements needed to satisfy them about the performance on access or retention of HEIs and current rumours are that around a third have been referred back.
How are universities going to put widening access strategies in place? How can they prepare staff and departments to implement the new plans? And how can they prepare financially, with teaching grants and other funding so heavily reduced? How can universities gain extra funding through philanthropy and private sector funding to help poorer students? Are FTSE 500 companies willing to sponsor talented students from poorer background?
This conference will bring together vice-chancellors, head teachers and college principals, Admissions Directors as well as Partnership and Widening Participation Managers to discuss the latest policy developments and the future of access for all talented students to higher education.