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School Discipline

Dr. Julian Lewis: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what assessment she has made of levels of indiscipline in (a) state primary and (b) state secondary schools since the abolition of corporal punishment. [13396]

Mr. Timms: Corporal punishment was abolished in state schools in 1987 and we have no plans to reintroduce it. Data on levels of indiscipline are not available on a

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consistent basis since 1987, so it is not possible to give an assessment of how levels of discipline have changed since then.

Class Sizes

Mr. Hendry: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how many children there were in classes of 30 or more, by year group, in each of the last five years. [20181]

Mr. Timms: The following is the information:

Number of pupils in classes of 30 or more, by year group, in maintained primary and secondary schools

Maintained primary(4)
Year group 1111,542134,987152,845189,117
Year group 2111,793146,357191,460217,346
Year group 3195,681224,968228,135216,348
Year group 4222,042226,862212,128197,954
Year group 5213,879201,652188,442192,969
Year group 6192,371186,438196,775175,773
Year group 74,3579871,472(6)

Maintained secondary
Year group 58,423(6)(6)(6)(6)
Year group 68,837(6)(6)(6)(6)
Year group 7131,250(6)(6)(6)(6)
Year group 8163,879(6)(6)(6)(6)
Year group 9146,462(6)(6)(6)(6)
Year group 1073,741(6)(6)(6)(6)
Year group 1165,838(6)(6)(6)(6)
Year group 121,299(6)(6)(6)(6)
Year group 13485(6)(6)(6)(6)
Aged under 14(6)427,000399,939355,465317,647
Aged 14 and 15(6)133,596124,759115,926104,866
Aged 16 plus(6)2,5661,9742,4192,219

(4) Includes middle schools

(5) Excludes middle schools

(6) Not available


Information on class sizes by year group in primary schools was not collected prior to 1998

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Schools Adjudicator

Chris Grayling: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills if she will make a statement on the right of hon. Members to make representations to the Office of the Schools Adjudicator about constituency issues. [20773]

Mr. Timms: The role of the Schools Adjudicator is to decide on LEA school organisation plans, and individual school proposals and admission arrangements, where it has not been possible to reach agreement locally and there has been a statutory objection. Adjudicators must consider each case on its merits, taking into account all the information available to them and the views expressed by all interested parties. Hon. Members do not have statutory objection rights but are free to make representations to the Office of the Schools Adjudicator on cases under consideration, in the same way as any member of the public with a local interest. Decisions of the Schools Adjudicator are binding on the parties concerned.

Sixth Forms

Mr. Chaytor: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how many schools (a) opened a new sixth form and (b) closed their sixth form in each of the last three years; in which learning and skills councils area they are located; and what the average A level points score was of each school listed under (a). [18380]

Mr. Ivan Lewis: Proposals have been approved for the following schools to open new, or close existing, sixth forms during the past three years.

(a) New sixth forms

Year/name of school LEA LSC areaAverage point score per student based on 2001 A/AS/AGNVQ results
Kesgrave High SchoolSuffolkSuffolkn/a
Hamstead Hall SchoolBirminghamBirmingham and Solihull16.6
The Axe Valley Community CollegeDevonDevon and Cornwalln/a
St. Edwards RC/CofE VA SchoolPooleBournemouth/Dorset/Poole15.2
The Compton High School and Sports CollegeEalingLondon West4.7
Filsham Valley SchoolEast SussexSussex10.3

(b) Closed sixth forms

Name of schoolLEALSC area
St. Edmunds Catholic SchoolPortsmouthHampshire and Isle of Wight
Normanton Freeston Voluntary Controlled High SchoolWakefieldWest Yorkshire
The Petersfield SchoolHampshireHampshire and Isle of Wight
Hull Trinity House SchoolKingston upon HullHumberside
Beaumont Leys SchoolLeicester CityLeicestershire
Breckfield Community Comprehensive SchoolLiverpoolMerseyside and Halton
Campion Catholic High SchoolLiverpoolMerseyside and Halton
St. Benedict's Catholic High SchoolWirralMerseyside and Halton
Babington Community Technology CollegeLeicester CityLeicestershire
Malory SchoolLewishamLondon East
Our Lady's Catholic High SchoolLiverpoolMerseyside and Halton
Broadoak Community SchoolNorth SomersetWest of England

n/a = not available

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Learning and Skills Council

Mr. Chaytor: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what criteria she has established for the distribution of the Learning and Skills Council's standards fund in 2002–03. [19617]

Margaret Hodge [holding answer 5 December 2001]: The Learning and Skills Council is responsible for setting the criteria for distribution of its standards fund. The council will publish the criteria to post-16 providers in time for the 2002–03 financial year.

School Links

Mr. McNamara: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what assistance is available to schools wishing to establish links with other schools in the (a) European Union and (b) Commonwealth. [20867]

Margaret Hodge [holding answer 5 December 2001]: The Department for Education and Skills provides assistance for schools to establish links with schools in the EU, Commonwealth and worldwide through its funding of organisations such as the British Council. Programmes include practical help with finding a school as well as a range of assistance to help with the cost of visiting the partner school.

Increasingly, school links are being made by utilising information and communication technology. For instance, schools seeking partner schools anywhere in the world can consult the Windows on the World website on the

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internet at or the Montage Plus website at which supports joint curriculum projects between schools in this country and abroad.

EU funding is also available through the Socrates Programme, the European Action Programme in the field of education that focuses specifically on schools in the EU through the Comenius action. The programme is open to the member states of the EU as well as all the applicant countries of central and eastern Europe, Cyprus and Malta. Contact seminars for schools wishing to find partners are held regularly across Europe. The British Council publicises the action, and holds UK regional briefing meetings on the Socrates Programme to advertise the opportunities. The Partbase database ( provides schools with an on-line search facility for finding Comenius partners.

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