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Learning and Skills Councils

Mr. Simon Hughes: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment if he will list those local learning and skills councils to which no elected local authority member has been appointed. [148625]

Mr. Wicks [holding answer 7 February 2001]: To date, I am pleased to report that 62 candidates with experience as elected local authority members have been appointed to the local learning and skills councils (LSCs). With a number of vacancies still to be filled, those local LSCs where no elected local authority members have been appointed are:






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In addition, 46 candidates who are currently local authority officials have been appointed across the 47 local LSCs. This combination of elected members and officials from local authorities will ensure that local LSCs are well placed to work closely in partnership with local authorities.

Degree Students

Ms Kelly: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment what the social class breakdown was in 2000 of students who (a) applied for and (b) were successful in obtaining places on degree courses at British universities in (i) law, (ii) medicine, (iii) engineering, (iv) nursing, (v) BEd teaching, (vi) accountancy, (vii) veterinary studies and (viii) psychology. [148702]

Mr. Wicks [holding answer 7 February 2001]: The information is shown in the following table.

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Applicants(38) and accepted applicants through UCAS to full-time and sandwich first-degree courses in the United Kingdom by social class and subject

Social class
Year of entry 2000ProfessionalIntermediateSkilled manualSkilled non-manualPartly skilledUnskilledNot knownGrand total
Applicants(38)
Pre-clinical medicine2,8232,979699702360799158,557
Nursing5152,7311,0799151,0891461,3427,817
Psychology2,8779,5823,8533,2542,0644862,66324,779
Veterinary science37779217815772141161,706
Engineering(39)3,4498,3513,7952,3881,9133662,77623,038
Law2,5327,4832,8662,5271,4724272,51819,825
Accountancy1,0023,5351,8401,5288982651,31710,385
Education(40)1,3816,6253,5752,6282,0264042,14118,780
Accepted applicants
Pre-clinical medicine1,9701,843363423200443865,229
Nursing2511,218358380419365363,198
Psychology1,0953,5191,1881,1316891409498,711
Veterinary science163276514212249595
Engineering(39)2,0774,6081,9171,2801,0031811,45512,521
Law1,6144,3501,5221,3847412291,33211,172
Accountancy4111,3827196623481045724,198
Education(40)5692,6391,2789977791257657,152

(38) Each student can make up to six applications. In the table, applicants are counted once under each subject to which they applied.

(39) Includes general, civil, mechanical, aeronautical, electrical, electronic, production/manufacturing and chemical engineering courses.

(40) Includes courses with the Education Group that lead to Qualified Teacher Status.


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Individual Learning Accounts

Mr. Mudie: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment what the target number for opening was and how many people have opened, individual learning accounts in (a) 1990 to 2000 and (b) 2000 to date. [148871]

Mr. Wicks: We have exceeded our interim target of opening 500,000 individual learning accounts by March 2001. From April 1999 to September 2000, prior to the launch of the national framework of individual learning accounts, training and enterprise councils (TECs) opened 202,654 accounts. From June 2000 until the end of January 2001, under the national framework, the individual learning account centre has opened a further 420,225 accounts. This means that 622,879 people in England have opened an individual learning account. We are on target to meet our commitment of 1 million people with an individual learning account by 2002.

Connexions Service

Mr. Boswell: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment what systems he will establish for reporting in respect of each Connexions partnership the respective level of funding in cash or kind (a) from partnership members, (b) derived from local non-partnership interests and (c) derived from other Government or European Union programmes. [148933]

Mr. Wicks [holding answer 7 February 2001]: The Connexions service business planning guidance published on 23 October 2000 requires partnerships to detail, in their own plans, the resources that will be available locally to deliver the service. Connexions partnerships will also be required to provide management accounts on a quarterly basis which will include the details of the sources and level of all income received whether in cash or in kind.

Mr. Boswell: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment what action he is taking to ensure that the delivery and funding of the Connexions service (a) respects the integrity of socially excluded young people, (b) reflects the interests of those young people who are not so excluded and (c) delivers a service which seeks to integrate all young people of qualifying age. [148934]

Mr. Wicks [holding answer 7 February 2001]: The Connexions service will be a universal service that will provide advice, guidance and personal support to all

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young people according to their needs. This will be delivered principally through specially trained personal advisers equipped to deal with the broad range of issues and problems faced by young people as they progress through their teenage years. Planning guidance was issued in October 2000 that set out clearly how Connexions would address the needs of the entire range of young people. It asked partnerships to state how they would provide a universal and targeted service, with key dates for implementation and also how partnerships would work with voluntary organisations to reach the hard to help. The aim is to provide a service that meets the needs of all young people during their crucial transition from adolescence to adulthood and working life.

It will be important that future funding arrangements underpin this key aim and ensure that Connexions partnerships have the funding they need to deliver a universal service to all young people according to their needs. That is why we published "Connexions Service Funding--A Consultation Paper" on 15 January to obtain a wide range of views on these important arrangements. The consultation closes on 6 April 2001 and the findings will be published in due course. A copy of the consultation paper can be found in the House of Commons Library.

Mr. Boswell: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment what action he plans to take to ensure that the Connexions funding formula approximates to the local needs of young people, and to verify and refine the accuracy of proxy measurements employed in making such calculations. [148935]

Mr. Wicks [holding answer 7 February 2001]: The future funding arrangements for the Connexions service are currently the subject of public consultation. "Connexions Service Funding--A Consultation Paper" was published on 15 January and seeks views on a range of issues including the structure of a funding formula and the proxies that would best capture the needs of young people. In finally deciding which proxies should be used in the funding formula, we will be looking to ensure that the data are robust at local level and that they will be updated at least annually. The consultation ends on 6 April 2001 and a report of the findings will be published in due course. A copy of the consultation paper can be found in the House of Commons Library.

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Student Visas

Mr. Boswell: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment what consultations he has held with the Home Office on the possible misuse of student visas as a means of obtaining entry to the United Kingdom; and what strategy he is taking to prevent this. [148937]

Mr. Wicks [holding answer 7 February 2001]: The Department for Education and Employment has on-going discussions with the Home Office, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and the British Council about how best to facilitate visa applications by genuine students. The requirements of the immigration rules for students have not been relaxed.


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