The private providers' 'designation' bonanza

Since 2009/10, the year the coalition came in, grants and student loans to 'alternative providers' had risen more than tenfold from £22 million to £269 million. Our campaign briefing looks at the implications.

Student support funded by taxpayers is paid to students studying with private providers, referred to officially as 'alternative providers' who have had courses 'designated; (approved) by the department for business, innovation and skills (BIS) for public support. This support can be accessed in the form of loans to cover tuition fees, maintenance loans and grants.

Since the Coalition government came to power, the amount of money paid to private companies via this route has increased exponentially.

Data released by the Student Loans Company in November 2013 and January 2014 showed that since 2009/10, the year the Coalition came to power, the total outlay in grants and student loans to 'alternative providers' had risen more than tenfold from £22 million to £269 million. Student support for private companies now represents 3.4%of all the money paid out by the Student Loans Company.

This expansion is now directly eating into the budget for mainstream not for profit universities and colleges.

The private providers’ ‘designation’ bonanza, Feb 14 [96kb]

Last updated: 27 January 2016

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