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Leadership contest begins

FErret has been sniffing around Sanctuary Buildings, the headquarters of the Department for Education and Skills, to find out who is in the running to head further education's Centre for Excellence in Leadership.

There are a number of people at the top in FE who would dearly like to tempt their northern star Sir George Sweeney away from his beloved Knowsley college, just round the corner from where he was born in Merseyside.

But it is understood Sir George, who chairs the bureaucracy-busting task force, has rejected all approaches. He is more likely to end up as chairman of the lifelong learning sector skills council.

So, the leadership college may have to put up with a southerner.

There is hot money on Henry Ball, part-time aviator and executive director of Sussex Learning and Skills Council, although he could be in line for a job as a regional guru at the LSC.

By the time FErret was shown out of the building, even hotter money was on Lynne Sedgemore, Guildford college principal and arch-enemy of bureaucracy-lovers.

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