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A step-by-step exit process

Contrary to the impression that some may have gathered from your report on the closure of AoC Workforce Development (AoC training arm leaves pound;1m debts, The TES, November 24), we have been actively and fully transparent about the steps we have taken to manage our exit from this part of AoC's activity.

The closure of the company was publicly announced in July 2006, when we said: "A full report on the progress of the business over the last year and on the considerations underpinning the board's decision, together with audited accounts, will be available to members at the AGM in November".

That is precisely the action which has been taken.

The information we promised in July was circulated to all members, together with a letter of explanation from myself and our chair, on October 20, rather than "only just coming to light", as your report claims.

The "private" meeting to which you refer was in fact our AGM, which all AoC members were entitled to attend. At that meeting, a full statement was given on the decisions taken in relation to Workforce Development and the financial implications, and all questions answered, following which the members present approved the accounts.

That October letter also explained that an independent examination had already been commissioned by the board, and the results will be reported to members in due course.

AoC deeply regrets that it proved impossible to overcome the risks involved in this venture, but we believe we have taken all the necessary measures to extinguish liabilities and so protect our members' interests. We remain committed to keeping members fully informed, within any legal constraints which may apply in these circumstances. AoC itself remains in strong financial health and will carry on its representational and support activities undiminished.

chief executive

Association of Colleges

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