The Fair Education Alliance: A wasted opportunity?



In April 2016 the Fair Education Alliance released its second annual report card.

This post reviews progress against the five declared impact goals, as well as the recommendations for securing stronger progress in future.


What is the Fair Education Alliance?

The Fair Education Alliance was launched by Teach First in June 2014.

It claims 55 members although the website lists only 44, while the new report card mentions 46, plus Offa who are ‘advisors to the FEA’.

Recent press releases have announced the addition of the University of Oxford, UCAS, SSAT, Allen & Overy, The English –Speaking Union, Gap Education, Challenge Partners and Ladies Who L-EARN. I think that makes 55.

Several of the participating organisations have a strong interest and involvement in access to higher education. There are four university members apart from Oxford, plus several third sector stalwarts including The Access Project, The Bridge Group, The…

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A blueprint for fair access?



Muybridge_ascending_stairs_animated_2Muybridge_ascending_stairs_animated_2Muybridge_ascending_stairs_animated_2This post reviews fair access developments subsequent to publication of the HE green paper and preceding publication of the impending white paper.

It asks whether some of the recommendations proffered by the Scottish Commission on Widening Access (COWA) should also be adopted in England.

Developments since the HE green paper

In England the green paper ‘Fulfilling our potential’ was published in November 2015 and a white paper is expected shortly.

The green paper reinforced two Tory targets announced during the election campaign, one to double participation amongst students from disadvantaged backgrounds compared with 2009 levels, the other to increase BME participation by 20% by 2020.

It proposed a seven-part action plan which is now being implemented:

  • New guidance to the Director of Fair Access on the progression and success of under-represented groups. This issued in February 2016, rapidly followed by Offa guidance to HEIs on 2017-18…

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