We are also subject to the public sector equality duty as a regulator.
Our regulatory framework states that:
‘The OfS’s primary aim is to ensure that English higher education is delivering positive outcomes for all students – past, present and future. This ambition runs through the regulatory framework and the organisation as a whole. The OfS will seek to ensure that all students, from all backgrounds (particularly the most disadvantaged), can access, succeed in, and progress from higher education.’
The framework also describes an approach to regulation which promotes social mobility, and equality and diversity:
‘The new framework equips us to deploy a powerful set of regulatory levers, not only to improve access to higher education, but also to reduce the gaps in continuation, attainment and progression that are currently experienced by different groups of students. The sector has increased opportunity by widening access… but has not achieved equality of opportunity. We will be radical and ambitious to make sure we deliver on the promise of higher education as an engine for social mobility, and a gateway to a better life for those who undertake it.’
We have assessed the impact of the framework, and we expect it to have a positive impact on equality and diversity.