Education and Skills Funding Agency
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24+ Advanced Learning Loans

Last week, the Skills Funding Agency has published a suite of information materials to help providers in their conversations with learners and employers. These include a learner frequently asked questions and factsheet and frequently asked questions for providers to use in conversations with employers. They are available on the Student Loans Company's practitioner website, which is now live at http://www.practitioners.slc.co.uk/further-education.aspx. In addition, we will shortly publish case studies showing scenarios for different learners interested in loans, introductory paragraphs to loans that provider organisations can use on their websites and in their publications and resources such as the logo for 24+ Advanced Learning Loans and poster templates. Keep visiting the Student Loans Company practitioner website through October as these additional resources go online.

The Skills Funding Agency is sending to providers their 24+Advanced Learning Loans Facility and Loans Bursary indicative allocations for the 2013/14 academic year and has published a first draft of the funding rules addition for 24+ Advanced Learning Loans and supportive frequently asked questions. These are being published well in advance, to ensure that colleges and training organisations have time to plan for the changes and consider any adjustments they need to make to their business models before learner applications start in April 2013 and the loans facility delivery starts in August 2013. The Agency would welcome feedback from colleges and training organisations on the presentation of these rules or where further clarification is required. A final version will be published early next year.

In July the Skills Funding Agency and Student Loans Company ran a series of provider workshops to help the sector prepare for the introduction of loans. These workshops were well attended, with over 600 representatives from colleges and training organisations, and feedback was very positive. The events also allowed providers to directly inform the first edition of the funding rules and frequently asked questions. Further provider events will take place in November and December, providing further details about how the loans system will operate, including more about how providers can work with the Student Loans Company. The events will also include sessions run by Learning and Skills Improvement Service to help providers benefit from the strategy and planning toolkit which they have developed.

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