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Tertiary Education and Research (Wales) Act 2022

Section 137: Instruments of government of higher education corporations in Wales

420.Section 137 amends section 124A of the Education Reform Act 1988 (“the 1988 Act”). Among other things section 124A of the 1988 Act requires a higher education corporation in Wales to have in place an instrument of government which provides for the constitution of the corporation (and such other provision as is required under section 124A).

421.The Privy Council has certain functions, under section 124A(2) and (3) of the 1988 Act to prescribe, make or modify the instruments of government of higher education corporations.

422.Instruments of government must comply (among other things) with Schedule 7A to the 1988 Act. Schedule 7A sets out statutory requirements for the content of instruments of government of higher education corporations made by the Privy Council.

423.Under section 124A(9) of the 1988 Act, the Welsh Ministers(2) are able to amend or repeal any of paragraphs 3 to 5 and 11 of Schedule 7A by order. These paragraphs relate to membership of the higher education corporation and in particular the size, constitution and appointment of members of the corporation.

424.Subsection (2) of section 137 of the Act makes provision for the Welsh Ministers’ existing order-making powers under section 124A(9) of the 1988 Act to be extended. The extended power allows the Welsh Ministers to amend or repeal the whole of Schedule 7A to the 1988 Act with the exception of paragraph 1. Paragraph 1 enables a higher education corporation’s instrument of government to empower the corporation to change its name with the consent of the Privy Council. The additional paragraphs of Schedule 7A covered by the extended power relate to tenure of office for members, officers and committees of the corporation, allowances paid to the members and the seal of the corporation.

425.Subsection (3) inserts a new subsection (9A) into section 124A of the 1988 Act which requires the Welsh Ministers to consult with the Commission and any other persons they think appropriate before exercising the extended order-making powers. It also inserts a new subsection (9B) which makes provision for such an order made by the Welsh Ministers to make consequential amendments or repeals to certain specified provisions in the 1988 Act if those are necessary as a result of any amendments or repeals made under the order-making power to Schedule 7A.


The function was originally vested in the Secretary of State but by virtue of article 2 of and Schedule 1 to the National Assembly for Wales (Transfer of Functions) Order 1999 (S.I. 1999/672) that function was transferred in relation to Wales to the National Assembly for Wales (established under the Government of Wales Act 1998). By virtue of section 162 of and paragraph 30 of Schedule 11 to the Government of Wales Act 2006 functions of the National Assembly for Wales were transferred to the Welsh Ministers.

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