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Learning and Skills Councils

Volume 447: debated on Monday 5 June 2006

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what the costs were of (a) closing training and enterprise councils, (b) the creation of learning and skills councils and (c) the merging of learning and skills councils. (70499)

The Learning and Skills Council was established in 2001 to replace the 72 Training and Enterprise Councils and the Further Education Funding Council. It was estimated that this would result in savings of some £50 million per annum. These savings have been realised and a significant proportion has been reinvested in better training in local areas.

Building on this, the Learning and Skills Council is currently undertaking a second major restructuring exercise which will further streamline the organisation and strengthen its capacity to work strategically with partners at local and regional level. This will involve the merger of some local offices, and the LSC estimates that, once completed, the restructuring will release up to £40 million per annum nationally.

The national costs incurred to date in (a) closing the Training and Enterprise Councils (TECs) and (b) creating the Learning and Skills Council (LSC) are £83 million. TECs, which were independent local companies, will also have incurred some local costs connected with the ending of the TEC network, but we do not have details of the amounts involved. Although the majority of TECs have now been formally wound up, there will be some additional costs involved in winding up those remaining. It is not possible to disaggregate the costs associated with (a) and (b).