DfE confirms remits for FE’s two new ministers

It has finally been revealed how splitting FE and skills policy between ministers will work

It has finally been revealed how splitting FE and skills policy between ministers will work


The Department for Education has confirmed how FE and skills policies will be split between minister for higher and further education Michelle Donelan and the new minister for skills Alex Burghart.

This comes after FE Week broke the news Donelan would be adding further education to her universities remit, following Gillian Keegan’s move to the Department for Health during the reshuffle.

Donelan and Burghart released a statement last week confirming FE and skills policy would be run jointly between them.

The Department for Education has now confirmed which of them will be responsible for which policy area.

Donelan, who now attends cabinet as minister for higher and further education, will oversee the following:

  • strategy for post-16 education
  • higher technical education (levels 4 and 5)
  • further education funding and accountability
  • lifelong learning entitlement
  • Institutes of Technology and National Colleges
  • universities and higher education reform
  • higher education quality
  • student finance (including the Student Loans Company)

Burghart, in his first ministerial job as minister for skills, will look after:

  • further education providers including provider finances and workforce
  • T Levels and qualifications reviews (levels 3 and below)
  • apprenticeships including pre-apprenticeships
  • adult education, including the National Skills Fund and the UK Shared Prosperity Fund
  • Skills Accelerators and Industry Training Boards
  • careers education, information and guidance including the Careers and Enterprise Company
  • reducing the number of young people who are not in education, employment or training
  • student experience and widening participation in higher education
  • international education strategy including education exports and international students

Responsibility for post 16 strategy was previously shared between the skills minister and the universities minister, however that now sits solely with Donelan. The only responsibility they will share will be the response by universities, higher education institutions and further education to Covid-19.

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