asked the Secretary of State for Scotland what steps have been taken in the past six months to encourage local education authorities to combine in school building consortia; and with what results.
Arrangements are in hand for meetings in Edinburgh and Inverness, with the Minister of State in the chair, to which representatives of all education authorities will be invited and in which the advantages of consortium methods will be explained and discussed.
Does that Answer mean that nothing has been done in the last six or twelve months to explain in greater detail to the local education authorities the quite considerable economies that can arise from the establishment of such consortia? Is not Lanarkshire, as a member of the English consortium, the only authority in Scotland at the moment which is in a consortium? Since many of the steel components are made in Scotland, may we not call on the Secretary of State to make tremendous efforts to bring more education authorities in Scotland into this kind of arrangement?
I agree that these consortia are of great importance. We are moving as fast as we can to get more authorities involved and interested.