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Sixth-form sort-out

An independent consultant is to help sort out the chaotic post-16 system in Kent, where more than 40 schools - five of them grant-maintained - are running sixth forms without Department for Education and Employment approval.

Among the schools seeking approval are Astor in Dover, which has run a sixth form since the 1960s and offers 24 A-levels, and Castle High in Deal.

Kent County Council last week met with the Funding Agency for Schools (the quango set up to administer GM finance), the Further Education Funding Council, and diocesan education boards to discuss the issue. The fate of the sixth forms will go out to public consultation next month and the consultant will analyse the results.

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