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Further Education College (Sittingbourne)

Volume 603: debated on Tuesday 15 December 2015

The House is making me earn my salary today.

We have launched a process of locally-led area reviews to consider each area’s skills needs and plan how further education colleges and sixth form colleges can best organise themselves to meet them. The Kent review is due to start in November 2016.

I welcome the review. Sittingbourne is the largest town in Kent without its own FE college. However, we have a unique opportunity to change that. May I invite the Minister to visit the Swale skills centre in my constituency to learn about how, with the right help, it could easily and cheaply be extended into a small college?

I have had a message from the Whips saying that they would be only too delighted for me to do further visits to hon. Members’ constituencies, so I would be delighted to visit my hon. Friend’s constituency. We do not hear the Opposition celebrating when new institutions open, including the Swale skills centre, which was set up by a very successful academies trust that is already doing a great job of running three local schools.