Questions from VC’s presentations to staff, November 2011

  1. Do we know if Kirklees College has submitted a bid for numbers?

We don’t know, but would expect Colleges to bid as this will bring extra funding.


     2. Was our bid for numbers for specific subject areas or general?

It was general.


     3. What was our reliance on Clearing last year?

We recruited 5% of students through Clearing last year.


     4. What are we doing to get the real facts about student finance out to potential students and their parents?

We are explaining this at Open Days, parents’ evenings, in Schools and Colleges, and also took part in the national awareness day on 14 November led by Martin Lewis.  But each of us can also make sure that anyone we hear speaking about it has their facts right.


     5. What is happening about Master’s level provision?

At the moment we are maintaining our fees broadly as they are, as graduates for the next few years will not be affected by the new fees, but we will have to review this in due course.


     6. Can we regain numbers in the core?

No, our only option is to bid for the margin numbers.


     7. Have we made a decision about our fee for 2013?

Not yet.


     8. Do Health and Education numbers fit into the core and margin model?

No, they are outside this model.


     9. Do we know which Universities have asked OFFA if they can bring down their fees or amend their level of scholarships?

No, this will be announced on 30 November.


    10. Do we know the split between staff and non-staff costs?

Yes, but this varies between Schools, income is allocated to each School and they then spend funds as they need to.  Any cuts would have to come from both pay and non-pay.


    11. Have we thought about setting up a company to compete with FE?

It’s not a route we would want to follow, we are committed to high quality delivery by high quality staff.


    12. Did the VSS scheme meet its targets?

We didn’t have a target for the scheme, as we still don’t have final information from the funding council about our numbers for 2012. 


    13. Do we still need to recruit students who are transferring in for a year’s study and those doing top ups?

Our aim must be to recruit students who will stay with us for the full three  or four years rather than those who will only come for one year.


    14. If we continue to remove modules we are in danger of making our curriculum uninteresting.

 We simply cannot afford to run small module groups.


    15. There have been reports that the sector is down around 10% in terms of applications, is this better or worse than we expected?

We can’t compare things to last year as it was an exceptional year.  Compared to 2009 we are up on applications, which is good news, but it is very early in the application cycle.


    16. How many places have we bid for?

We have bid to replace what we think we will be losing.


    17. The new student centre is an excellent idea, but how do we make sure it is available for longer than 9 to 5pm?

This is something we are working on with the help of the SU.  It is important that we look at how we support students who are here in the evening and those who study part-time.


    18. You mentioned encouraging staff and students to create their own companies, how will that work?

This will happen through the setting up of the Enterprise and Innovation Centre (EIC).  We are keen to encourage and support it.  Working with the EIC there will be people who have done it, and made it work, for students and staff to learn from.