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Mr. Paice: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment if he will publish the minutes and conclusions of the meeting which took place on 8 May to consider the review of the disability service teams. 
Ms Hodge [holding answer 10 July 2000]: The meeting on 8 May focused on the Access to Work programme, which is one of a range of services available to help Disability Service Teams achieve their aim of getting disabled people into, or to retain, jobs. This meeting was convened to obtain views from a range of Access to Work users on this programme. Sue Maynard-Campbell, who chairs the Advisory Committee
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for Disabled People in Employment and Training (ACDET), chaired the meeting and a detailed report of the discussions held has been produced. A copy of the information requested is contained in a report which has been placed in the Libraries.
Mr. Ruffley: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment how many (a) full-time and (b) part-time nursery places there were in the Suffolk Local Education Authority area in (i) 1996-97, (ii) 1997-98, (iii) 1998-99 and (iv) 1999-2000 for (A) three-year-olds, (B) four-year- olds and (C) all children aged under five years. 
Ms Hodge: The available information on the numbers of under fives in Suffolk Local Education Authority area who are in some form of early years education is shown in the following tables. Table 1 gives the number of children in early years education places in Suffolk Local Education Authority area from 1997 to 2000.
Since September 1999, we have invested substantially in the creation of new, free early education places for three-year-olds. During 1999-2000 funding, via the Early Years Development and Childcare Partnerships, was focused on 65 authorities based on social need. From summer 2000 this extra funding will also be available in Suffolk and the other remaining LEAs. Table 2 shows
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current estimates of the number of new funded places of three-year-olds being created in all sectors in Suffolk for summer 2000, autumn 2000 and spring 2001.
Currently, all eligible four-year-old children in England are now in some form of early education, including 16 per cent. in private and voluntary places. Funding is provided through the early years partnerships for LEA, voluntary and private provision. In England, there are now 120,000 more free places for three and four-year-olds compared with 1997.
|Positions as at January||Part-time||Full-time||Total|
|Total under five|
(1) Includes pupil numbers collected from maintained schools in England in January each year (Annual Schools' Census).
(1) Not applicable
(1) Includes pupil numbers collected from maintained schools in England in January each year (Annual Schools' Census). From January 1998 these data are combined with estimates submitted by LEAs for Nursery Education Grant purposes relating to private, voluntary and independent providers in spring.
Mr. Nicholls: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment when the Minister for Employment, Welfare to Work and Equal Opportunities, the right hon. Member for Dulwich and West Norwood (Ms Jowell), will answer the letter sent to her by the hon. Member for Teignbridge on 6 June. 
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to protect the right of religious groups to appoint persons sharing the religious beliefs of the employing body; and if he will make a statement. 
Ms Jowell: As a member of the European Union, the United Kingdom is fully involved in the negotiations on the European Commission's proposal for a Directive on Equal Treatment in Employment and Occupation which are being taken forward in the Council of Ministers.
As the proposal is still in the process of being negotiated it is not possible to assess the precise effect it will have on the employment policies of bodies such as that mentioned in the question. However, the Government is negotiating on the basis that the text finally agreed should be clear and workable in practice and should preserve, where appropriate, existing arrangements which allow religious bodies to protect their ethos.
Mr. Stunell: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment if he will list each group that (a) is responsible to his Department, with significant and plural membership from outside the Civil Service, and to which the Nolan rules on non-departmental public bodies do not apply; and for each such group, if it (a) is a private company, (d) is a charity, (c) has no formal legal basis and (d) has some other legal basis, giving details. 
Mr. Wills [holding answer 18 July 2000]: I refer the hon. Member to the answer given by my hon. Friend the Parliamentary Secretary to the Cabinet Office on 27 July 2000, Official Report, columns 799-800W. I also refer the hon. Member to the first central list of information that was published on 11 January 2000. Copies of the list are available in the Libraries. The information on the status of the groups is not immediately available. I will write to the hon. Member as soon as possible with the details, and place copies of my letter in the Libraries.
Tony Wright: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment if he will list all the (a) task forces, (b) action teams, (c) policy reviews and (d) other temporary advisory bodies with external members currently in existence within his Department; and on what date each body (i) was set up and (ii) is expected to terminate. 
Mr. Wills: I refer my hon. Friend to the answer given by my hon. Friend the Parliamentary Secretary to the Cabinet Office on 27 July 2000, Official Report, column 799W. I also refer my hon. Friend to the first central list of information that was published on 11 January 2000. Copies of the list are available in the Libraries.
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