§ Mr. Gwilym Roberts
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what proposals he has for dealing with local authorities which, in the coming financial year, discriminate unfavourably within the current rate support grant provision against non-mandatory areas of provision such as 16 to 19 year olds undertaking part-time education and adult education; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Prentice:
Detailed guidance to local authorities about the measures needed to restrict their expenditure in 1975–76 to the levels envisaged in the rate support grant settlement for that 387W year was given in a joint circular from the Departments concerned, including my Department, on 23rd December 1974. While the circular indicated the limited scope for development of certain aspects of the education service it made clear that the expenditure forecast for education provided for the expected increase in the number of pupils and students, and that this provision accounted for most of the increase in expenditure envisaged over the 1974–75 level. However, it must remain the responsibility of individual local authorities to settle their own expenditure budgets for education as for their other services and to answer for their decisions to their local residents.