Previous Section Index Home Page

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

Mr. Ieuan Wyn Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment (1) what plans he has to make provision, in the education service, for children identified as being affected by attention deficit hyperactivity disorder; [10495]

28 Jul 1997 : Column: 52

Ms Estelle Morris: Provision for children with special educational needs, including those whose needs arise from attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, is a matter for local education authorities and schools, which must have regard to the code of practice on the identification and assessment of special educational needs. The forthcoming Green Paper on special needs will set out ideas for improving provision across the whole range of special needs. It will emphasise the importance of early identification and co-operation between statutory and voluntary agencies and parents, factors which are of particular relevance to children with ADHD and their carers. Following consultation, the Department will draw up an action plan to take forward the Green Paper's proposals.

My right hon. Friend has received no representations from the National Association of Head Teachers regarding classroom behaviour difficulties. The previous Secretary of State received a number of representations from the association on this matter. I refer the hon. Member to the reply he received from the then Minister on 26 June 1995, Official Report, columns 503-504. The Department has not evaluated research on attention deficit disorder, although officials from the Department have met a number of ADHD groups and discussed with them research in this area, and professional bodies, including the Royal College of Psychiatrists, have issued guidance based on research evidence. We have no current plans to commission further research on ADHD.

Mature Students

Mr. Jim Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment for what reasons students over 50 years of age are not entitled to (a) student loans and (b) grants; and if he will introduce measures to allow these students access to (a) and (b). [10915]

Dr. Howells: Older students are less likely to repay loans because of the shorter time they will work after graduation, but they are more likely to have access to other funds, such as savings or commercial loans. There is no age limit for the means-tested mandatory award. The Government note the recommendations of the national committee of inquiry into higher education on age limits for loans and will bring forward detailed proposals in the autumn.

28 Jul 1997 : Column: 53

Student Fees

Mr. Willis: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment how many part-time students in further education have to contribute (a) all and (b) part of their tuition fees; and what was the total financial contribution made by these students in the most recent available year.[10466]

Dr. Howells: Of students funded by the Further Education Funding Council in colleges and external institutions in the 1995-96 academic year in England, 884,000 part-time students paid all their tuition fees and 173,000 paid part of their tuition fees. The total tuition fees paid by these 1.057 million part-time students was £111 million in the same academic year. All the figures are provisional.

Mr. Willis: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment what was the total financial contribution made by part-time students towards their fees for approved higher education courses in the most recent available year. [10465]

Dr. Howells: The information requested is not held centrally. In 1996-97, some 60 per cent. of part-time higher education students in UK HE institutions for whom the source of fees was known paid their own fees, but the available information does not record the amounts paid. The total income received by UK HE institutions for part-time HE fees in 1995-96 from all sources was £276.2 million.

Young People in Care

Mr. Dawson: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment what action he proposes to take to ensure that the educational needs of young people in care are addressed with particular reference to (a) the effects of a disrupted education, (b) facilities for homework and (c) access to and support in (i) further education and (ii) higher education. [10816]

Ms Estelle Morris: We are developing with the Local Government Association guidance to local education authorities on behaviour support plans which will make specific reference to look after young people. We are supporting research for the Who Cares? Trust and Calouste-Gulbenkian Foundation, which will expand knowledge of good practice in the education of these young people.

We are aware of the difficulty for some children when their home environment militates against the completion of homework tasks. The Department for Culture, Media and Sport has issued a White Paper--"The People's Lottery"--which sets out proposals for the use of midweek lottery funds to support out-of-school-hours activities including homework clubs. These clubs will provide a place and adult support to help pupils complete homework tasks.

All 16 and 17-year-olds who are not in full-time education or employment are guaranteed the offer of a suitable youth training place if they want one. This guarantee is extended to 18-year-olds and over who have been prevented from completing or taking up YT due to specific circumstances, one of which is if they have been prevented from accessing training as a result of a care order.

28 Jul 1997 : Column: 54

Two partnership projects under the new start strategy to be introduced in England in September 1997 to drive up participation and motivation of disaffected young people in learning will target looked after children and care leavers.

It is for individual higher education institutions to determine their admission policies, taking account of evidence from the schools and colleges on the potential of these young people.

Assisted Places Scheme

Mr. Fraser: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment how many children are currently benefiting from the assisted places scheme; and how many have benefited since 1981. [10960]

Mr. Byers: Some 33,140 children held assisted places in the academic year 1996-97 just ended. Since 1981, some 86,400 children have held assisted places at a cost of £918 million to the public purse.


Mr. Oaten: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment (1) what national standards apply to the hours of opening of jobcentres; [10428]

Mr. Alan Howarth: Responsibility for the subject of the question has been delegated to the Employment Service under its chief executive. I have asked him to arrange for a reply to be given.

Letter from Leigh Lewis to Mr. Mark Oaten, dated July 1997:

Education Spending

Mr. Hammond: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment (1) what has been the percentage real terms change in the level of education spending per pupil in the maintained sector since 1979;[10889]

28 Jul 1997 : Column: 55

Mr. Byers: Since 1979-80, spending per pupil in local education authority's maintained schools, excluding special schools, has increased by 45 per cent. in real terms. In 1995-96, the latest year for which data are available, the average net institutional expenditure per pupil in LEA-maintained pre-primary, primary and secondary schools in England was £1,909. The average expenditure, excluding capital grant funded expenditure per pupil in grant-maintained primary and secondary schools was £2,366.

Next Section Index Home Page