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Astra Pension Scheme

Mr. Todd: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment if he will ensure that the calculation by the State Pension Scheme Office of the Guaranteed Minimum Pension for members of the Astra Pension Scheme is completed as a matter of urgency. [156109]

Mr. Wicks: The National Insurance Contributions Office is in contact with the trustees of the Astra Group Pension Scheme and is dealing with these calculations as a matter of urgency.

Departmental Policies (North Cornwall)

Mr. Tyler: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Employment if he will set out, including statistical information relating as directly as possible to the North Cornwall constituency, the effects on North Cornwall of his Department's policies and actions since 2 May 1997. [156124]

Mr. Wills: Outlined are details of the effects of a range of the Department's policies on the North Cornwall constituency and Cornwall LEA.

Sure Start

Sure Start Kerrier was established in Camborne in September 2000 to provide support services to families using the facilities and expertise provided by the Children's Society, Cornwall Association for the Blind, and the local Education Action Zone. As well as offering advice on general family problems, specialists offer guidance on playgroup locations, speech and learning difficulties, as well as providing a playbus and sensory trail for blind children.

Beacon Schools

Delabole Community primary school--was awarded Beacon status on 1 September 2000 for leadership and management, early years provision, literacy and numeracy, geography, parental and community involvement, and special educational needs.

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Schools with specialist status designated since 1997

Eleven schools in the constituency were among 51 in Cornwall to be allocated a total of £343,750 in March 2001. Awards were around £5,000 for a typical primary school and £25,000 for a typical secondary school. Staff at the 11 schools received Improvement Awards because pupil performance in 2000 was substantially better than in 1997, or because schools had come out of special measures.

Education Action Zone

Camborne, Pool, and Redruth Success Zone includes one special school, 26 primary, and three secondary schools. It commenced in May 2000, and is intended to raise standards, motivate pupils, reduce exclusions, and involve parents directly in their children's education.

Key activities include: a new Early Years curriculum, greater parental involvement and guaranteed child care provision. Increased computing for Key Stage 1,2, and 3 pupils. Development of community learning centres. New approaches to teaching and learning and a new career structure for "para-professionals". Key partners in the Zone include Barclays Bank, Cornwall and Devon Careers, Cornwall Social Services, the local education authority, and 49 national and local businesses.

Class Size Plan

The September 2000 figures show that there are now only 255 (1.7 per cent.) pupils remaining in infant classes of 31 or more. The figure in January 1997 was 4,667 (29.5 per cent.).

Cornwall Performance Data

Key Stage 2, percentage of pupils achieving level 4
GCSE--percentage of pupils achieving 5+A*-C grades
LEA average48.851.151.652.6
England average45.146.347.949.2
5+A*-C grades
LEA average91.493.292.792.4
England average86.087.588.588.9
No passes
LEA average4.
England average7.
Average point score
LEA averagen/a39.940.240.5
England averagen/a37.038.138.9

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A/AS Level and Advanced GNVQ

Average points for 2 or more A/AS levels
LEA average17.818.917.8
England average17.818.218.5
A/AS average per entry
LEA average5.25.35.1
England average5.45.55.5
Average point score GNVQs
LEA average10.110.510.5
England average9.69.910.1

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Funding per pupil

In Cornwall LEA, funding per pupil has increased by £370 in real terms between 1997-98 and 2000-01.

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Cornwall LEA Capital funding

Credit approvals1997-981998-991999-20002000-012001-02Total
ACG6,372 6,2516,5737,4457,10033,741
PFI Credits------51--51
NDS Condition Funding--------1,2911,291
VA Grant2251761603885321,481
Devolved Formula Capital------3,8282,0605,888
Science Lab------275275550
Access Initiative--------465465
AMP Support----80----80
SEED Challenge------274310584
Class Size Initiative--55834340--1,229
Outside Toilets--538------538
Schools Security at 75 per cent.137171175176125784

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Space for Sport and the Arts scheme

Kilkhampton Junior and Infants and Warbstow County Primary are to benefit from this scheme, details of which were announced on 27 March 2001. A joint DCMS and DfEE national initiative offering up to £130 million means that these two schools can now develop plans to meet local community needs for sport, arts, and social activities that will benefit pupils, teachers and their communities. A further six schools throughout Cornwall have also been included in the scheme.

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Classroom of the future

Cornwall LEA was allocated £624,000 in February 2001. The project will be based at Camborne School and Community College, but will be accessible electronically and physically to all schools in the Camborne, Pool, Redruth (CPR) Success Zone. The project offers a space mission control centre and real time night astronomy during daylight hours in the UK--through remote control of satellites on the dark side of the planet and international links. Collaboration is taking place with the National Space and Science Centre in Leicester. Input is also promised from the Royal Navy.

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New Deal for Schools allocations for schools in the North Cornwall constituency

Year/School Project detailsGrant awarded (£000)
Bodmin Community PrimaryGeneral building repairs66
Camelford PrimaryUpgrade classroom block51
St. Petroc's CE PrimaryGeneral improvements15
Bodmin Community CollegeFire precautions43
Budehaven CommunityFire precautions33
Budehaven CommunityStructural repairs32
Launceston CollegeFire precautions37
Launceston CollegeStructural repairs32
Launceston CollegeReplace temporary classrooms473
Summercourt PrimaryFire precautions2
Treviglas Community CollegeFire precautions24
Treviglas Community CollegeDust extraction32
Wadebridge SchoolFire precautions32
Newquay TretherrasFire precautions46
Sir James Smith CommunityFire precautions25
Sir James Smith CommunityReplacement of time expired temporary classrooms28
Sir James Smith CommunityReplace failing window walling23
Blisland Community
Bodmin Community Primary Part of 36 school package for primary fire precautions (31)69
Boscastle Community
Cardinham School
Berrycoombe School
Bodmin Community Primary Junior
Bodmin Community College Part of 16 school package for playground repairs (31)139
Camelford Primary
Indian Queens Primary
St. Merryn School
Bodmin Community CollegePart of 13 school package for structural repairs(31)435
Trevisker PrimaryPart of 8 school package for electrical works(31)210
Berrycoombe School
St. Mary's CA Primary
Bude Infant Part of 37 school package for flame failure devices on school kitchen ovens (31)115k
St. Columb Minor School
Trenance Infant
Beacon Infant and Nursery

(31) Denotes total allocations made to Cornwall LEA for package projects covering a number of schools throughout Cornwall, including those shown in the constituency

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30 Mar 2001 : Column: 841W

Further Education

Student numbers at all FEFC funded institutions where home postcode is in the Local Authority District of North Cornwall.

1996-97 to 1999-200

16-18 Adult
FEFC funded
Non-FEFC funded

Modern Apprenticeships

Information on Modern Apprenticeships for all English constituencies will be placed in the Library by the end of March.

New Deal for Young People

In the North Cornwall constituency, 1,219 young people have joined the New Deal to end December 2000. 745 have found jobs, 609 of which are sustained.

Labour market statistics

The working age employment rate in Cornwall in autumn 2000 was 71.8 per cent., below the UK rate of 74.7 per cent. The rate in autumn 1997 was 75.6 per cent., in autumn 1998 70.9 per cent., and in autumn 1999 69.9 per cent. These figures are volatile at this level, and our best interpretation of the trend in the employment rate for Cornwall since 1997 is that it has been broadly flat.

30 Mar 2001 : Column: 842W

The claimant unemployment rate has fallen from 8.2 per cent. in February 1997 to 5.0 per cent. in February 2001 in the North Cornwall constituency.

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