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DfES launches new consultation for 16-19 education


Estelle Morris

Education and Skills Secretary Estelle Morris has launched a new consultation into the way that education and training is organised for 16-19 year-olds.

Discussion will focus on reorganising post-16 learning provision. Proposals laid out in '16-19 organisation and inspection: a consultation document' look at giving the Learning and Skills Council the ability to put forward proposals for reorganising local provision for post-16 learning, to make it easier for schools to open sixth form units, and to give OfSTED and the Adult Learning Inspectorate powers to inspect all learning for students within the 14-19 age group.

The proposals follow the publication of a white paper, entitled 'Schools - Achieving Success', due to form part of an Education Bill later this year.

Estelle Morris said:

"For too many young people, the 14-19 age range has been a period of falling engagement in learning and rising disaffection. Many serious attempts to change this have failed. We must succeed. In the next few months we will be setting out our detailed plans for a coherent, well-balanced 14-19 phase of learning in a separate document, but in the meantime we need to take the opportunity presented by an Education Bill to consult on legislative changes to the 14-19 phase.

The proposals in this consultation document cover three areas. The development of a 14-19 phase of learning can happen only if all those involved - the Learning and Skills Council, local education authorities, schools, colleges and training providers - work in partnership with each other.

The expansion of high quality provision post-16 will contribute to the raising of standards. School sixth forms, sixth form colleges, further education colleges and private training providers all have a key role to play in raising achievement. I am keen to ensure that the Education Bill - which is essential to delivering much needed changes to our education system - is fully informed by the findings from this consultation exercise."

The consultation can be accessed at:


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