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Mr. Bob Russell: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) how many applications for grant aid from St. Dunstan's have been received for the financial years 1998-99, 1999-2000, and 2000-01; how many have been granted; for what purposes and at what value; and if he will make a statement; 
Mr. Hutton: No applications were received from St. Dunstan's for section 64 funding in the 1998-99 and 1999-2000 rounds, although there were applications from the Diana Gubbay Trust for the Blind, which is administered by St. Dunstan's. Under the 2000-01 round, St. Dunstan's submitted an application for a section 64 grant of £500,000 towards the repair of the roof covering of their swimming pool.
Under section 64 of the Health Services and Public Health Act 1968 the Department has power to fund voluntary organisations in England whose activities support the Department's policy objectives relating to health and social services. As applications for grant aid exceeded funds available for 2000-01, each application was considered on its merits, and grants awarded when they were judged most likely to further the Department's policy objectives. St. Dunstan's application was one of a large number of unsuccessful applications.
Dr. Kumar: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment (1) what advice he has issued to schools, nurseries and playgroups about catering provision for children with nut allergies; and if he will make a statement; 
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(3) what advice he has issued to school nurses, schools, nurseries and playgroups on how to deal with children with nut allergies; and if he will make a statement. 
Jacqui Smith: My Department has issued joint good practice guidance, with the Department of Health, for schools on "Supporting Pupils with Medical Needs" which contains advice on anaphylaxis. It recommends drawing up individual health care plans to enable children to take as full a part as possible in school activities. I commend the guidance to other bodies having children in their care. Advice is also available on the joint DfEE and Department of Health "Wired For Health" website (www.wiredforhealth.gov.uk). The guidance that we will be publishing this autumn for school caterers to support our new nutritional standards for school lunches will include advice on catering for those children who stay for a school lunch but who have particular medical needs, including nut allergies.
Mr. Willis: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment how many supply teachers were employed (a) in England and Wales and (b) by local education authorities in (i) inner London and (ii) outer London in (A) July 1998 to June 1999 and (B) July 1999 to June 2000. 
Mr. Brady: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment how many appeals for admission to infant schools in the next academic year have been refused on the grounds that admission would breach the class size limit for five, six and seven-year-olds; and in how many cases the child had a sibling already in the school. 
Ms Estelle Morris: The Department does not hold this information. The admissions framework we have established aims to ensure that local admission arrangements accommodate parental preference wherever possible, but there have always been cases where this cannot be met. Our infant class size initiative, which is being pursued in such a way that popular schools are able to expand, enables more parents to obtain a place for their child at their preferred school. A net gain of 12,000 places at popular schools is being provided as a result of the policy.
We are well on course to deliver our pledge to limit infant classes to 30 pupils. £620 million is available to support the pledge, and allocations so far to Trafford LEA amount to some £2 million. This has helped to reduce the size of the average Key Stage 1 class in the Altrincham and Sale, West parliamentary constituency to 25.9. The figure in January 1997 was 29.6.
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Mr. Ruffley: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment what the average class sizes were in Suffolk for (a) primary schools, (b) middle schools and (c) upper schools in (i) 1997-98, (ii) 1998-99 and (iii) 1999-2000. 
In the Suffolk local education authority area, the number of pupils in key stage 1 classes of 31 or more pupils was 1,850 in January 2000, compared with 2,590 a year earlier. This means that less than 10 per cent. of these pupils remain in classes of over 30 pupils.
The number of pupils in key stage 1 classes in England of over 30 pupils has already fallen by 300,000 and the Government are well on target to deliver their infant class size pledge in England. Some £620 million is available to support the pledge and allocations so far to Suffolk LEA amount to some £3 million. This has helped reduce the average size of key stage 1 classes in the parliamentary constituency of Bury St. Edmunds from 25 in January 1997, to 24 in January 2000. Over the same period, the average size of key stage 2 classes in the constituency has fallen from 27 to 26.
The size of the average secondary class in Suffolk has risen slightly over this period, but at 21.8 this is still four fewer than in primary schools. Secondary classes nationally have been rising steadily for the last 12 years. In 1988 the figure was 19.9. In the budget, secondary headteachers received between £30,000 and £50,000 each to spend as they choose. If they spent it on teachers, they could reduce the secondary pupil:teacher ratio by 0.4.
|Position as at January each year||1998||1999||2000|
|Key stage 1:|
|Average class size||24.1||24.1||24.3|
|Number of pupils in classes of 31 or more||3,011||2,590||1,850|
|Key stage 2:|
|Average class size||26.3||26.3||26.2|
|Average class size||25.0||24.9||24.9|
|of which middle deemed primary:|
|Average class size||(1)--||(1)--||(1)--|
|Average class size||20.8||20.8||21.2|
|of which middle deemed secondary:|
|Average class size||23.7||23.6||23.8|
(1) Includes nursery classes and mixed stage classes
(1) Not applicable (no schools of this type)
Mr. Pike: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment what impact changes in public expenditure on schools have had on class sizes since May 1997; and if he will make a statement. 
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Ms Estelle Morris: Since this Government came to power, the average size of Key Stage 1 classes has fallen dramatically, and we are well on course to deliver our pledge to limit infant classes to 30 pupils. £620 million is available to support the pledge, and allocations so far to Lancashire LEA amount to nearly £15 million. This has helped to reduce the size of the average Key Stage 1 class in the Burnley parliamentary constituency to 25.6. The figure in January 1998 was 27.1.
As far as funding more generally is concerned, while spending per pupil fell by £60 between 1994 and 1997, we have increased it by £300 per pupil in real terms since 1997. This has helped to reverse the trend towards bigger classes in primary schools. The size of the average primary class fell in January 2000 for the second year running, after rising for the previous 10 years. The size of the average Key Stage 2 class has also started to fall--from 28.4 in January 1999 to 28.3 in January 2000.
The average size of secondary classes has risen slightly, but at 22 still remains more than five below those in primary schools. Class sizes in secondary schools have been rising steadily since 1988, when the figure was 19.9. The pupil/teacher ratio in secondary schools is 17.1--more than six lower than in primary schools. In the budget earlier this year, secondary heads each received between £30,000 and £50,000. It remains for heads to decide how to use this money, but if spent on teachers, the secondary pupil/teacher ratio could be reduced by 0.4.
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