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WESTMINSTER WATCH

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Councils will not lose out when the distribution of funding for sixth forms is passed to learning and skills counci...
Councils will not lose out when the distribution of funding for sixth forms is passed to learning and skills councils, education secretary Estelle Morris has said.

The£1.35bn of sixth-form funding currently reaches councils through the DTLR. Under the new system, learning and skills councils will distribute it to councils, which must pass it straight to sixth forms.

However, she claimed there would be 'arrangements' for 2002/03 to 'address the concern of some councils that they might lose out under the new funding system'.

She said: 'I have listened carefully to the concerns expressed by the Local Government Association and a number of individual authorities that some authorities potentially stood to lose out.

'Stephen Byers, the secretary of state for local government, and I are addressing those concerns and intend to make appropriate adjustments in their funding for 2002/03.'

Outgoing drugs tsar Keith Hellawell has praised community initiatives to tackle drug misuse in his final annual report.

It was announced in June that, after his last report, Mr Hellawell would no longer work on domestic drug issues (LGC, 15 June).

He said: 'Supporting and enabling local communities to tackle drug-related problems in their locality has been a key area of our work. Examples of the successes in grassroots projects are contained in the report.'

The post of drug tsar, which will cease to exist, had been criticised by observers for being too remote from drug users

and the communities in which they live to have any impact.

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