Published: 19/12/2023

Advanced Learner Loan bulletin - December 2023

Important - January performance management review point

We're approaching the second and final Advanced Learner Loan performance management review point for academic year 2023/24. This is on 18 January 2024. You'll need to have used 90% or more of your loan facility to be in scope for a growth award.
If you do not meet the criteria in chapter 27 of the funding rules but need growth, you should contact your ESFA Regions and Providers (RAP) lead. You should also complete the exceptional case template which will be available from 4 January. You should return completed forms by Thursday 11 January.
You can track your facility usage with the Loan Facility Details report. This is available in the Financials Home section of the Learning Provider Portal.
Due to the tight deadline following the Christmas break, please attend to this as a priority if you plan to be considered for growth.

Change of Circumstance notifications

It’s very important you submit suspensions and withdrawals as soon as the change details are finalised. You must do this in line with the service standards:

  • 60% of suspensions and withdrawals submitted within 60 days of notification
  • 99% of suspensions and withdrawals submitted within 90 days of notification

This helps us to minimise overpayments, make sure learners enter repayment at the correct time with the correct interest rate, and make sure you are not in breach of the ESFA funding rules.


Advanced Learner Loans – Learning Provider forums

We'll be running a series of face to face and virtual forums in March 2024 where we'll reflect on the current academic year and look towards the 2024/25 academic year. We’ll consider how the FE sector is evolving and cover the latest updates on Lifelong Learning Entitlement (LLE). 
You’ll have the opportunity to feedback on all areas of the Learning Provider and the SLC partnership as well as network with other providers. We'll gather insight to feedback to DfE, ESFA and other partners and share best practice.
We’ll publish dates and venues in the new year.

Lifelong Learning Entitlement

The DfE has published an update covering the Office for Students (OfS) registration categories for providers. In the current system, providers have a choice to apply in one of the following categories:

  • Approved
  • Approved (fee cap)

A third category of registration will be introduced for providers not already on the OfS register but offering existing Advanced Learner Loan-funded courses at levels 4-6. This category will be available from 2027/28. ALL funding will be extended for a further 2 years until 2027.

If you’re a provider that has already registered with the OfS, or intending to register under the existing two categories before 2027, courses currently under ALL at levels 4-6 will be become eligible for LLE, if they meet LLE requirements.

You can find the update in the Lifelong Learning Entitlement policy paper under the ‘Regulation of providers under the LLE’ section.

You can find LLE resources on the LP Services website and our LLE FAQ on the HEP Services website.


Partners Support Desk festive opening hours

Our Partners Support Desk is here to help you with any day to day operational questions about individual learners, application processing, payments and system issues.

You can contact the support desk on 0300 100 0643 or by emailing

Over the festive period, their opening hours are:

  • Friday 22 December to Tuesday 26 December – closed
  • Wednesday 27 December to Thursday 28 December – open 9am to 5pm
  • Friday 29 December to Tuesday 2 January – closed

The support desk will return to business as usual on 3 January 2024.

I am your primary adviser and your principal point of contact for service management, future developments and best practice and will be happy to answer any questions you may have about the topics highlighted in this bulletin.