House of Commons
Session 1997-98
Internet Publications
Other Bills before Parliament

Education (Schools) Bill
     The Bill introduces provisions which would bring the assisted places schemes ("APS") in England and Wales and Scotland to an end, while continuing to assist children who already hold such places.
     Clause 1 provides for the repeal of legislation relating to the APS in England and Wales.
     Clause 2 makes transitional arrangements which will allow pupils holding assisted places at the beginning of the 1997-98 school year, to continue to hold such places for that and subsequent school years. But a pupil receiving primary education who holds an assisted place will (save in special circumstances) cease to hold that place once he has completed his primary education.
     Clause 3 enables the Secretary of State to make regulations in connection with clauses 1 and 2.
     Clause 4 defines terms used in clauses 1 to 3.
     Clause 5 restricts the operation of the APS in Scotland so that it ceases to apply to new pupils after the beginning of the 1997-98 school year. It will continue for existing assisted pupils, except that a pupil receiving primary education who holds an assisted place will not (save in special circumstances) hold his assisted place after completing his primary education. It also provides for consequential changes to the Secretary of State's powers to make regulations for the operation of the APS in Scotland.
     Clauses 6 and 7 and Schedule 1 contain supplementary provisions concerning consequential amendments and repeals, the short title, commencement and extent.
 Financial effects of the Bill
     The Bill's provisions will lead to savings which will be spent on reducing infant class sizes in the maintained sector. These savings will be realised from the 1998-99 financial year onwards. The previous Government had started a substantial expansion programme, and so significant savings should accrue as a result of the phasing out of the schemes as compared with previous plans. Places will be available at schools in the maintained sector for children who would otherwise have taken assisted places.
 Effect of the Bill on public service manpower
     There will be some reductions in central government manpower arising from the ending of the APS. These will arise gradually over the next seven years as the APS is progressively phased out.
 Business Compliance Cost Assessment
     The ending of the APS will relieve participating independent schools of certain administrative duties; during the period in which the scheme is phased out, the requirements on schools will lessen as the number of pupils receiving support reduces.




© Parliamentary copyright 1997
Prepared 23 May 1997