§ Mr. Foster
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science if, in the light of his reply of 19 May, Official Report, c. 61, he will commission a study which would provide helpful comparisons in the educational activities of young people in the European Economic Community countries following their compulsory schooling in (a) full-time education, (b) full-time vocational education and (c) apprenticeships.
§ Dr. Boyson
No. It is extremely difficult to attempt to make exact comparisons, and a comparative study of the type proposed would be a lengthy and costly exercise. Much information however is available, and my right hon. and learned Friend encourages interchange of information, ideas and personnel in this area between the countries of the European Community. The recently published consultative document "A New Training Initiative", which the Government have commended for discussion, draws on knowledge of relevant experience of vocational education and training in other member States of the Community. My right hon. and learned Friend is satisfied that he has sufficient information to ensure that worthwhile lessons are drawn from the experience of other member States.