A GOVERNMENT offer to pay Sandwell Council £1 million compensation if it drops its legal challenge to the cancellation of a £138 million school rebuilding programme has been rejected.

The council was left £1.7 million out of pocket in 2010 after Education Secretary Michael Gove cancelled the scheme affecting nine schools, including Perryfield High School, The Meadows Sports College, Bristnall Hall Technology College all in Oldbury and Heathfield Technology College - now the Ormiston Forge Academy in Cradley Heath.

Along with five other local authorities, the council took the Government to the High Court over the scrapping of Building Schools for the Future and claimed victory after the judge ordered the DfE to reconsider the merits of each axed school project.

Mr Gove later dashed hopes that BSF would be reprieved and Sandwell is considering an appeal.

It is also demanding that Mr Gove reveal the contents of emails sent from a private email account relating to the project.

Council leader Darren Cooper said: “Michael Gove has said he will give £1 million to Sandwell to pay off our contractual obligations but we must accept his decision on BSF. Our view is not to accept that at this moment in time.”