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In moving Amendment No. 148, I shall speak also to the other government amendments in the group. Schedule 17 is intended to ensure that publicly funded land no longer required for a foundation school remains available for alternative educational use. A governing body or foundation body wishing to dispose of land must seek the consent of the Secretary of State or the Assembly.
Schedule 17 closes the loophole that currently arises where land is transferred from the governing body of a foundation school to its trustees, who would not be caught by the prohibition on disposal. The subsequent amendments in the group are necessary to ensure that the legislation takes full account of all the circumstances in which trustees may acquire land for foundation schools. Our intention is to provide adequate protection for all former local authority land held by trustees. In order to do this, the legislation must set out clearly all the circumstances in which they might acquire the land.
As it stands, new paragraph 2A of Schedule 22 to the 1998 Act, which is inserted by Schedule 17, would not impose restrictions on the subsequent disposal of land by foundation school trustees who acquired it as a result of such a direction. The effect of Amendments Nos. 148 to 151 is to capture land transferred to trustees in the circumstances I have described within the definition of land which may not be disposed of without the consent of the Secretary of State or the Assembly.
The effect of Amendment No. 152 is different. It enables the Secretary of State or the Assembly to direct that where trustees hold land on trust for a foundation school which is discontinued, the same body of trustees may continue to hold the land for the purposes of a different school. This further amendment is intended to ensure that the legislation is comprehensive in its coverage so that all publicly funded foundation school land is subject to the same restrictions on disposal. I hope that the Committee will support the amendments. I beg to move.