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Functions of key bill revealed

The Post-16 Education (Scotland) bill, aimed at driving forward the regionalisation of colleges and widening access to university, was introduced to the Scottish Parliament this week by Michael Russell.

Its key functions include:

- Giving powers to ministers to impose funding conditions so that higher education institutions comply with principles of good governance and widen access to students from non-traditional backgrounds;

- Making colleges more accountable;

- Giving ministers powers to appointremove regional chairs and force mergers;

- Allowing for the Public Appointments Commissioner to regulate the appointment of regional college chairs and board members;

- Imposing a new statutory duty on bodies to share data to support 16- to 24-year-olds in education and training

- Providing a legislative underpinning to the fees system for students studying in Scotland from the rest of the UK.

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