To ask Her Majesty's Government whether Ministers and the Higher Education Funding Council for England plan to investigate the decision-making process at the University of Bath which led to an "exit package" being paid to the Vice-Chancellor; what was the total value of that package; and whether they consider this was consistent with the proper and efficient use of public funds.
The government expects the Higher Education Funding Council for England (HEFCE) to look into issues related to value for money with regard to English higher education institutions. HEFCE has investigated the governance process at the University of Bath which led to the Vice-Chancellor being awarded their most recent salary increase. On the 20 November 2017 it published a report, containing recommendations relating to that governance process. The university has agreed to respond to those recommendations by 15 December 2017.
Separately, the university’s governing body has agreed the retirement arrangements for the Vice-Chancellor. The university issued a press release on 28 November, confirming the details of the exit package.
We understand that HEFCE is currently considering whether it should investigate the governance processes concerned with the Vice-Chancellor’s retirement.
The government’s determination to ensure that students and the taxpayer receive value for money from the higher education sector underpin the reforms we are making through the Higher Education and Research Act 2017. The Office for Students (OfS) will become the regulator for the sector in 2018. The OfS has a statutory duty to have regard to the need to promote value for money in the provision of higher education by English higher education providers.