§ Mr. Wiggin
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what assistance her Department provides either directly, or indirectly through local authorities, specifically for business management training centres, colleges or specified courses.
§ Mr. van Straubenzee
The Department's financial assistance in this field to universities is made through the University Grants Committee, which is making grants totalling about £½ million a year to the London and Manchester Business Schools and which estimates that, in addition, universities are currently spending out of their general grant some £1½ million a year on management education and training. Local education authorities are responsible themselves for their expenditure on the provision of polytechnics and other establishments of further education in which courses are offered on business management. Exchequer assistance towards local authority expenditure on further education is given through the rate support grant payable from the Department of the Environment.
§ Mr. Montgomery
asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what plans she has for the further development of management education in the further education sector.
§ Mrs. Thatcher
To foster the best use of resources for management study in the further education sector and to encourage the development of high quality work, I have decided, after consultation with the local authority associations and the regional advisory councils for further education, to nominate a limited number of regional centres of management education based on existing departments of established reputation. One function of the centres will be to give emphasis to full-time management work at higher level 185W so that all or most may in due course develop to the point where they should be able to offer courses leading to a master's degree of the C.N.A.A. At the same time I would expect them to become focal points for management education in their region, contributing also through industry-linked research and consultancy to the quality of management in practice. Up to a dozen centres are proposed, generally in or associated with a polytechnic, to give a reasonable spread throughout England and Wales. I shall shortly be inviting the local education authorities and institutions concerned to consider arrangements.