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Teacher Vacancies

Mr. Brady: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills, pursuant to her Department's publication of figures relating to teacher vacancies, how many vacancies there are at Key Stages (a) one and two and (b) three and four. [53665]

Mr. Timms [holding answer 30 April 2002]: The information is not available in the form requested. In January 2002 there were 1,700 vacant teacher posts in maintained primary schools and 2,440 vacant teacher posts in maintained secondary schools in England. These figures are provisional.

The vacancies recorded had been advertised and were for full-time permanent appointments or full-time appointments of at least one term's duration, which existed at the survey date and which the local education authority or school concerned intended to or had unsuccessfully attempted to fill.

Mr. Brady: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how many teachers left the profession in each of the last five years, broken down by the reason given for leaving. [53667]

Mr. Timms [holding answer 30 April 2002]: The numbers of teachers leaving regular full or part time service in the maintained schools sector in England were as follows. The latest provisional data available are for 31 March 2000.

Age retirement1,9001,7001,9001,9002,300
Ill health retirement4,6004,8003,4002,3002,300
Premature retirement8,60010,30011,2003,8004,300
Other leavers20,30018,80022,50023,60026,100

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Many of the teachers leaving the profession in these years will come back into service.

Some 10 per cent. to 20 per cent. of part-timers are not recorded on the Teachers' Pension Scheme, from which the data are obtained.

Teaching Pay Initiative

Mr. Fabian Hamilton: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills if funding for the teaching pay initiative will continue beyond 2003–04. [54153]

Margaret Hodge: TPI is an important initiative designed to help modernise FE Pay arrangements and recruit and reward teachers as part of the drive to improve teaching and learning. I recognise that it is an ongoing commitment for colleges and funding will continue beyond 2003–04. Many colleges have felt able to consolidate TPI payments and I hope others will follow suit.

Young People's Services

Phil Hope: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how the Government promotes innovation in services for young people. [46326]

Mr. Denham: I have been asked to reply.

Promoting innovation is a key element of the Government's agenda for the modernisation of public services. Through partnerships between the statutory, voluntary and community sectors in initiatives such as the Children's Fund, Sure Start, Early Years and Childcare Partnerships and Quality Protects we are bringing new experience and innovative thinking to the delivery of services for children and young people and we are committed to mainstreaming these approaches.

Central to this approach is listening to the views of young people and involving them in service design, implementation and evaluation. The Government's core principles for the involvement of children and young people, published by the Children and Young People's Unit, will help ensure that the contribution of young people continues to bring new thinking and innovation into services designed to meet their needs.



Bed and Breakfast Accommodation

Dr. Jack Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions how many children under 16 are living in bed and breakfast accommodation; what steps are being taken to reduce the

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numbers of children living in bed and breakfast accommodation; and what steps he has taken to increase the supply of affordable accommodation. [53036]

Mr. Byers: Information relating to the number of children aged under 16 living in bed and breakfast is not collected centrally. However we estimate that there are 6,500 homeless households with children living in B&B accommodation.

I recently announced a £35 million programme to reduce the number of homeless families with children in B&B hotels. Changes have also been made to housing benefit subsidy arrangements, worth an estimated £10 million, to encourage authorities to place homeless households in self-contained temporary accommodation. The Bed and Breakfast Unit is working with authorities with high levels of B&B use to produce individual action plans to ensure that, by March 2004, homeless families with children are placed in B&B hotels only in emergencies, and even then for a maximum of 6 weeks.

My Department has significantly increased funding for new affordable housing. Investment through the Housing Corporation will rise to over £1.2 billion by 2003–04, almost double 2000–01 levels. This will help deliver our target of 100,000 new affordable homes by 2004, and we will ensure these funds are distributed more in line with local and regional priorities so that investment matches local needs.

We are also providing £250 million through the Starter Home Initiative to help some 10,000 key workers in high demand areas to purchase a home.

In addition, the Affordable Housing Unit is working closely with partners and stakeholders to increase delivery of affordable housing in high demand areas across the country over the next three years and to contribute to longer term thinking on the development of new housing capacity.


Chris Grayling: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions what his policy is on the number of times an applicant can delay consideration of a planning appeal. [53509]

Ms Keeble: It is our policy that all parties to an appeal should be discouraged from delaying its consideration. On 1 August 2000 revised statutory procedures were introduced to speed up the handling of planning appeals by inquiry, hearing, and written representations and enforce the stricter deadlines in the procedures. Where an inquiry is to be held the Planning Inspectorate's aim, in every case, is to fix as early an inquiry date as possible. Each principal party to an appeal is only permitted one refusal of a date offered for the inquiry before a date, time and place for the inquiry is fixed.

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Right to Buy

Ms Oona King: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions, pursuant to his answer of 22 April 2002, Official Report, column 46W, on right to buy, who has been commissioned to undertake the research projects into the right to buy scheme; what the terms of reference are of each project; and when work on each will be completed. [53018]

Ms Keeble: The information is as follows:

Construction Industry

Brian Cotter: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions what the cost will be to small businesses within the construction industry of complying with self-certification schemes following the introduction of the Building (Amendment) Regulations 2002. [53003]

Dr. Whitehead: The four new schemes recognised in the regulations are voluntary, and offer small businesses the opportunity, should they wish to take it up, to save money through not having to go through local authority building control. This is particularly important in relation to replacement glazing where as a result of changes we made to Part L of the regulations—that part dealing with the conservation of fuel and power, it became controlled fitting and subject to building control.

The Fenestration Self Assessment Scheme (FENSA) was introduced to ease the burden of this change. We estimate that the typical cost of going through local authority building control for replacement glazing would be about £120 for a contract with a value of less than £2,000. Overall we have estimated the cost of not introducing self-certification to be £106,400,000 in the first year, and the overall financial benefit to be £104,685,000.

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