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FOI act should apply to private universities, commission says

Alternative providers of higher education should be brought under the Freedom of Information Act to create a more even regulatory regime, the Higher Education Commission has said.

The commission, whose members include Bahram Bekhradnia, president of the Higher Education Policy Institute, and Roberta Blackman-Woods, chairwoman of the All-Party Parliamentary University Group, published its report on data in higher education institutions on 21 January.

The commission referred to a suggestion in the government’s green paper on higher education that said all higher education providers should be subject to the same requirements and that the burdens on them should be eased where possible. The commission report said that this seemed to be “a strange suggestion” at a time when the general trend was towards greater transparency.

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