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Building Colleges for the Future Programme

Volume 496: debated on Wednesday 16 September 2009

To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills what recent discussions he has had with representatives of further education colleges on the Building Colleges for the Future programme. (288229)

With regards to the Building Colleges for the Future programme, I have met and discussed the current issues with the sector body—the Association of Colleges and the 157 Group. In terms of the programme’s implementation, this is the responsibility of the Learning and Skills Council (LSC). The LSC, in its work to resolve the current funding pressures with the programme, has consulted widely. This consultation has been in-line with the recommendations of Sir Andrew Foster, and has included the Association of College’s capital reference panel. I have subsequently been kept informed of progress.

My predecessor and I have held meetings to discuss the positions of individual colleges. Importantly, such meetings must be without prejudice to the statutory responsibility of the LSC for determining capital approvals.