'Service users' at hub of review

Peter Wilby's article (TES, June 7) was particularly well-timed. At the end of a week of celebrating the last 50 years, how fitting to have an article that was at least 20 years out of date.

I take responsibility for most of the "obfuscatory prose" that Mr Wilby finds so unclear, and I have to advise readers that the above quotation is the sort of pseudo-intellectual phrase that you will not find in the report. I am convinced that Mr Wilby has not read the document.

I find it most disturbing that the editor of the New Statesman finds words like "transition", "coherent", "efficient" and "procedures" to be obfuscatory.

The best-value review process is not about dismantling anything, but it is about the future. It is also about putting service users (learners) at the centre of our thinking.

Leicestershire is proud of its youth and community education. We have a strong tradition and much still to be proud of, including an excellent Office for Standards in Education report. The choices that we face are stagnation or acceptance of the realities of new partnerships including those with the Learning and Skills Council and the Connexions service.

The review is about providing local people with the best possible lifelong learning opportunities and doing this as cost-effectively as possible.

Had Mr Wilby really wanted more information on the issues he only needed to ask.

E White

Chairman, best value review panel Leicestershire County Council County Hall Glenfield Leicester

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