Clause 5

Part of Further Education and Training Bill [Lords] – in a Public Bill Committee at 11:45 am on 12th June 2007.

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Photo of Greg Mulholland Greg Mulholland Shadow Minister (Education) 11:45 am, 12th June 2007

May I say, Mr. Atkinson, what a pleasure it is to serve under your chairmanship?

Very briefly, I wish to reiterate the comments made by the hon. Member for Daventry, to emphasise the Liberal Democrats’ concerns with regard to adult education. As the Minister will be well aware, there have been concerns expressed, particularly by the National Institute of Adult Continuing Education. Regarding the clause, NIACE has said that it is concerned that adult education and training is losing much of its statutory underpinning. This is a very good opportunity for the Minister to refute that view. Although we understand the need for flexibility, which is the reason given for the clause, it is vital to tackle that crucial area of concern at this stage, and I hope that the Minister will do so in his brief comments.