Sir Nicholas Soames MP, the Member of Parliament for Mid Sussex, met today with the Minister of State at the Department for Education, The Rt Hon Anne Milton MP, to discuss the future of the Haywards Heath Sixth Form College.
The Mid Sussex team at the meeting comprised; Sir Nicholas, Kathryn Hall, Chief Executive of Mid Sussex District Council, Jonathan Sharrock, Chief Executive of the Coast to Capital LEP, Professor Adam Tickell, Vice Chancellor of Sussex University and Deborah Myers, Director of Education and Skills at West Sussex County Council.
Commenting after the meeting Sir Nicholas said; “I am very grateful to the Minister and her Officials for the time that they gave us this morning to go through the detailed Business Case to re-establish post-16 provision in Haywards Heath”.
Sir Nicholas said; “This was a very detailed meeting at which the Minister and Officials went through the Business Case and reviewed all the assumptions”.
“All the parties to the conversation; the LEP, WSCC, MSDC and Sussex University, have contributed in a very valuable way to producing this excellent and detailed document”.
Commenting further Sir Nicholas said; “I believe substantial progress has been made. The Department is clear about our objectives for the Haywards Heath Sixth Form College and made several excellent suggestions to fortify our case. The Minister has suggested that the next meeting should take place with Officials before the end of this month at which further details will be developed and discussed.”
Sir Nicholas was at pains to point out that this is by no means a done deal. The Mid Sussex team will be looking for support from local Businesses, particularly in respect of vocational training and the crucial work that has yet to be done with the Treasury. It is likely that Sir Nicholas and the Partners will need to lobby the Chief Secretary in order to secure the funding required.
Sir Nicholas said; “This was a good workmanlike and positive meeting. A very productive discussion and a clear programme for further steps”.
“I shall report back as soon as we have something further to say.”
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