Bidders need all the information

2nd February 1996 at 00:00
Your report (TES, January 19) on the withdrawal of GrandMet Trust from its position as preferred bidder for the Careers Service in south London only 10 weeks before they were due to take over management of the service makes disturbing, but for those who have been involved, not entirely surprising reading.

One of the key elements in this bidding process has been the existence of the Transfer of Undertakings and Protection of Employment (TUPE), which requires the new contractor to take over responsibility for all existing staff, including accumulated pension and redundancy rights. However, it was not acknowledged officially that TUPE applied.

If this acknowledgement had been official, there would have been a requirement on the existing contractors to provide full information for other bidders on staff numbers, gradings and other aspects of employment costs. In fact, if this organisation's experience is anything to go by, the local authorities declined to give any of this information.

The result was that, to a large extent, alternative bids were on the basis of a theoretical model of the likely cost of managing the service.

The lesson from this is that if such services are put out to tender, the tendering procedure needs to be carefully thought through and local authorities, whose interest ought to be in public service and not in their own bureaucracy, should be obliged to make public relevant information.

Finally, the Government should have the courage of its convictions and encourage bidders to come up with new ways of addressing old problems to achieve agreed goals.

NEIL McINTOSH Chief executive Centre for British Teachers Education Services East Street Reading

Subscribe to get access to the content on this page.

If you are already a Tes/ Tes Scotland subscriber please log in with your username or email address to get full access to our back issues, CPD library and membership plus page.

Not a subscriber? Find out more about our subscription offers.
Subscribe now
Existing subscriber?
Enter subscription number


The guide by your side – ensuring you are always up to date with the latest in education.

Get Tes magazine online and delivered to your door. Stay up to date with the latest research, teacher innovation and insight, plus classroom tips and techniques with a Tes magazine subscription.
With a Tes magazine subscription you get exclusive access to our CPD library. Including our New Teachers’ special for NQTS, Ed Tech, How to Get a Job, Trip Planner, Ed Biz Special and all Tes back issues.

Subscribe now