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The benefits of a joint post-16 approach;Letter

Your helpful story on the future planning and funding arrangements for post-16 education used the words "unified funding body" (TES, March 7).

The present proposals being discussed by the Local Government Association, the Further Education Funding Council and the training and enterprise councils are more complex: we envisage a single set of planning and financial arrangements involving the LEAs, FEFC, and the TEC working at a sub-regional level through post-16 forums. The local education authorities, FEFC representatives and the TEC will plan together the provision of courses and there will be convergence of funding. These forums will not only replace the present arrangements but also be developed locally rather than imposed nationally.

Joint talks are proceeding and there is planned a delegation to Baroness Blackstone to obtain the support of the Government for a voluntary implementation of this at local level. Any legislation would then be used should it be necessary.

Partnership will result in a more coherent post-16 system of education and training for the student GRAHAM LANE

Education chairman Local Government Association 26 Chapter Street, London SW1

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