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Council must take the blame

It is disappointing to read the outgoing chairman of the Learning and Skills Council attach much of the blame for excessive bureaucracy in FE to overstaffing at the Department for Education and Skills ("Only a civil servant cull will cut red tape", FE Focus, June 18).

Last week two LSC officials met me in college and asked for details of students getting learning support. This is data that is included in the individualised learner record that the college has to submit to the LSC three times a year. Unfortunately, officers from local LSCs do not appear to have sufficient access rights to use these returns so it is easier to ask a college to supply information a second time. There are other similar, avoidable tasks that the LSC imposes on colleges on a daily basis.

The LSC developed the bureaucratic framework that weighs FE down and its officers continue to operate within this bureaucratic culture. It may be comfortable for Bryan Sanderson to blame the DfES, but until the LSC takes responsibility for the continued development of bureaucracy, little will change.

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