Clause 4

Skills and Post-16 Education Bill [Lords] – in a Public Bill Committee at 12:00 pm on 2nd December 2021.

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Interpretation

Amendments made: 11, in clause 4, page 5, line 35, after “institution” insert “in England”.

Amendments 11, 12, 13 and 14 ensure that a relevant provider, to whom the duties in clause 1(4) apply, must be in England. This amendment ensures that, for an institution within the further education sector to be a relevant provider, it must be in England.

12, in clause 4, page 5, line 38, leave out “a” and insert “an English”.

See the explanatory statement for Amendment 11. This amendment ensures that a higher education provider will be a relevant provider only if it is an English higher education provider.

13, in clause 4, page 5, line 40, after “provider” insert

“whose activities, so far as they relate to the provision of post-16 technical education or training, are carried on, or partly carried on, in England”.

See the explanatory statement for Amendment 11. This amendment ensures that an independent training provider is a relevant provider only if the provider’s activities that relate to providing post-16 technical education or training are carried on, or partly carried on, in England.

14, in clause 4, page 5, line 41, at end insert “in England”.

See the explanatory statement for Amendment 11. This amendment ensures that the only schools that can be relevant providers by virtue of regulations under clause 4 are schools in England.

15, in clause 4, page 6, line 9, leave out “in respect of which amounts are”

and insert

“funded, wholly or partly, by amounts”.

This amendment, together with Amendments 16 and 17, ensure that education or training is treated as English-funded where amounts are paid directly to providers of the education or training in accordance with regulations made by the Secretary of State (as, for example, where payments are made by the Student Loans Company).

16, in clause 4, page 6, line 10, leave out “by the Secretary of State”.

See the explanatory statement for Amendment 15.

17, in clause 4, page 6, line 11, after “made” insert

“by the Secretary of State”.—(Alex Burghart.)

See the explanatory statement for Amendment 15.

Question proposed, That the clause, as amended, stand part of the Bill.

Photo of Alex Burghart Alex Burghart The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Education

Clause 4 is important in providing clarity as to the providers who will be subject to the duties relating to local skills improvement plans and the employer representative bodies eligible to be designated to lead them. It also gives the Secretary of State the ability, through regulations, to include additional providers.

The clause enables the Secretary of State to specify further types of providers that deliver English-funded post-16 technical education and training in England to be encompassed in the future. However, those regulations would be subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution in either House of Parliament. I hope members of the Committee agree that this is an important aspect of the LSIP provisions.

Photo of Clive Efford Clive Efford Labour, Eltham

The question is that clause 4—

Photo of Clive Efford Clive Efford Labour, Eltham

Sorry, I am getting ahead of myself.

Photo of Toby Perkins Toby Perkins Shadow Minister (Education)

We are moving at such breakneck speed, Mr Efford, it is hard to keep track.

The clause is an interpretation clause, clarifying what is meant by the various terms of eligible body, employer, training provider and so on. We have no reason to vote against it. Amendments 11 to 17 have just been made. It would be useful if the Minister could inform the Committee what the consequence of the proposals on local skills improvement plans will be for the Barnett consequentials. How may they be considered by the Scottish Government, Welsh Assembly and Northern Irish Assembly?

Photo of Alex Burghart Alex Burghart The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Education

I thank the hon. Gentleman for his support for the clause. My understanding is that there are no Barnett consequentials as a result of this measure. If that turns out to be incorrect, I will let him know at the first available opportunity.

Photo of Toby Perkins Toby Perkins Shadow Minister (Education)

Given the amount of money that is being spent on local skills improvement plans and the initial budgets towards the trailblazer, I am slightly surprised to learn that there is no equivalent expectation for Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. I will take the answer that the Minister has given me as the one that will stand for now, and forever into the future, unless I hear otherwise.

Question put and agreed to.

Clause 4, as amended, accordingly ordered to stand part of the Bill.