Key changes from previous guidance are:
Where targets for 2014/15 were missed by less than 5%, no funding deduction will be made. Outside of this 5% tolerance, the funding reduction per student will be reduced from 100% to 50% of the national funding rate.
The Government have said that 97% of students without GCSE A*-C did an approved course (typically either Functional Skills or GCSE re-sit) in 2014/15 which means that 35,000 students did not. Institutions who did not fully comply will also be required to complete a survey to say why and what they are doing to ensure it doesn't happen again.
Almost all Apprenticeship programmes retain Functional Skills as an option, as does adult learning courses. The full guidance is here.