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The Education Funding Agency (EFA)

The EFA is responsible for:

  • funding education for learners between the ages of 3 and 19, and those with learning difficulties and disabilities between the ages of 3 and 25
  • funding and monitoring academies, university technical colleges, studio schools, and free schools
  • building maintenance programmes for schools and sixth-form colleges
  • allocating funds to 152 local authorities for maintained schools, and 4,000 voluntary-aided schools

The EFA use a national funding formula to calculate an allocation of funding to each institution every academic year. For further information on 16-19 funding, please click here.

The Skills Funding Agency (SFA)

Please click the video above to find out which Active IQ qualifications are eligible for SFA Funding in the 2016-17 funding year.

The SFA fund skills training for further education (FE) in England. They support over 1,000 colleges, private training organisations, and employers with £3.2 billion of funding each year. In addition they:

  • support traineeships for young people not in education, employment and training (NEET)
  • run the National Apprenticeship Service
  • run the National Careers Service
  • oversee and manage Advanced Learner Loans
  • provide an opt-in service to Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs) to work with colleges and training organisations in meeting their locally identified skills priorities
  • support the Learning Records Service, who maintain Unique Learner Numbers (ULNs) and Personal Learning Records (PLRs)

Active IQ qualifications are funded according to whether they fall into core/none core qualifications (such as GCSEs or Tech Levels), the legal entitlements of the learner and which funding band they reside in, based on qualification size and the number of guided learning hours. The programme weighting factors are determined by the cost involved with delivering different qualifications – the majority of active leisure and learning qualifications reflect the relatively low costs involved in delivering these qualifications.

The rules around whether qualifications are fully funded, co-funded, or are eligible for loans in place of funding can seem complex. More information is available here.

The Hub

The Hub provides online services for use by organisations working with the Skills Funding Agency (SFA). These organisations are mainly colleges, training organisations and employers that have a funding agreement to provide education and training. The agreement may be with the SFA or with the Education Funding Agency (EFA). On the Hub, these approved providers can access funding contracts and finance information for their organisation. It can be accessed here.

Advanced Learner Loans

Advanced learner loans are now available for those aged 19+ studying technical and professional qualifications at levels 3 and 4. From 2016/17, loans will be available to those aged 19 and above studying technical and professional qualifications at levels 3 to 6. Those aged 19-23 will still retain a legal entitlement to full funding for their first full level 3 course, with loans becoming an option for those seeking to re-skill. Unemployed learners will have additional separate entitlements. This expanded offer aims to provide a source of fees to support learners accessing further education and help address the country’s technical and professional skills gaps. To download the advanced learner loans catalogue for funding year 2016 – 2017, please click here.