Clause 25

Part of Further Education and Training Bill [Lords] – in a Public Bill Committee at 2:00 pm on 14th June 2007.

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Photo of Nick Ainger Nick Ainger Parliamentary Under-Secretary, Wales Office 2:00 pm, 14th June 2007

The FE colleges in Wales are not demanding degree-awarding powers. One or two might be, but others are perfectly satisfied with the current consortia arrangements that they have with HE institutions. As I said in my response to the hon. Member for South Holland and The Deepings, however, an independent review of further education in Wales is under way, so the issue will be raised by   Fforwm, which represents FE institutions in Wales. Individual colleges may also make their case and the review will consider that.

If there is a clear recommendation that degree-awarding powers be given to FE institutions in Wales and the Assembly agrees with it, there will be the option to bring that forward as an Order in Council, but there is not anywhere near as much pressure in Wales as there is in England for FE institutions to have degree-awarding powers. That is why the measure has not been included in the clause.

I am conscious of the time. I think that I have responded to all the points that hon. Members have made.