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Mrs. Curtis-Thomas: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills if she will list reports published by the Government between 1972 and 2002 that concern mathematics, including (a) the study and teaching of mathematics of school pupils from starting age to Advanced Level, (b) the shortage of mathematics teachers, (c) the declining levels of students undertaking mathematics courses in further and higher education and (d) the failure to engage the interest of pupils studying mathematics. 
Mr. Ivan Lewis: This information is not held centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost. A list is available of mathematics publications issued or sponsored by the Department for Education and Skills, its predecessors and non-departmental public bodies, during the period 19722002. However, the list is not comprehensive or official. I am placing a copy in the Libraries, together with figures for Higher Education students studying mathematics for the period 199495 to 200102.
Dr. Tonge: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what representations she has made to further education colleges regarding time taken off each month by students waiting for their asylum applications to be processed to report at Gatwick. 
Mr. Ivan Lewis: None. Asylum processing arrangements are a matter for the Home Office. It is important that students attend Immigration Service reporting centres as required. I would expect further education colleges to plan learning for asylum seeker students as they would any other students and take account of an individual's personal circumstances wherever practicable.
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Mr. Woodward: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills which chief education officers and other interested organisations were consulted on removing some asylum-seeking children from sections 13 and 14 of the Education Act 1996; and if she will place their responses in the Library. 
Mr. Ivan Lewis [holding answer 9 May 2002]: A consultation exercise was conducted with a very small number of chief education officers to gather views on the removal of some children of asylum seekers from sections 13 and 14 of the Education Act 1996. They were asked to treat this consultation as confidential. In view of the fact that those whose views were sought were approached on a confidential basis we do not consider it appropriate to list those who were consulted.
Barking and Dagenham
Bath and North East Somerset
Blackburn with Darwen
Hammersmith and Fulham
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North East Lincolnshire
Shrewsbury and Atcham
Stockton on Tees
Stoke on Trent
Telford and Wrekin
Wycombe. 1 Denotes districts which have been invited to develop two programmes in the sixth wave.
These new programmes are an addition to the 437 programmes which are already delivering services to young children and their families in disadvantaged areas or currently developing their plans. This announcement brings the total number of sure start programmes announced so far to 522. They will become operational from summer 2003 when we will be well on schedule to meeting the public service agreement target of 500 programmes operating by 2004, reaching one third of all
14 May 2002 : Column 541W
Peter Hain: My right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary and I regularly meet our opposite numbers from the candidate countries. I visited Cyprus last month, and the Foreign Secretary plans to visit Bucharest, Budapest, Prague and Bratislava later this month.
Peter Hain: The Laeken European Council confirmed the EU's determination to complete negotiations with those countries that are ready at the end of this year, so that they can participate in the next European Parliament elections in 2004. The negotiations are on course to meet this timetable.
Currently 11 of the 12 countries in negotiations have opened 30 chapters. Cyprus has closed 27 chapters, Slovenia and Lithuania have both closed 26, the Czech Republic has closed 25, Hungary, Estonia, Slovakia and Latvia have closed 24, Poland has closed 23, Malta has closed 21, and Bulgaria has closed 17. Romania has opened 24 chapters and closed 11.
14. Mr. Love: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will report on the recent ministerial visit to Cyprus; and if he will make a statement on progress on negotiations between the Greek and Turkish communities on the island. 
Peter Hain: I visited Cyprus on 10 and 11 April and met, among others, President Clerides and Mr. Denktash. I remain hopeful that a settlement can be found that will enable a reunited island to join the EU.
Peter Hain: Face-to-face talks with UN involvement for a comprehensive, just and lasting settlement are at an important stage. The UK and the international community hope to see a reunited Cyprus accede to the EU. We are
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working hard to help all involved to move negotiations forward and co-operating fully with the UN Secretary- General's special adviser, Alvaro de Soto.
As the UN Security Council stated on 2 May, the time has now come to set down on paper areas of common ground between the two sides, with the aim of establishing the component parts of a comprehensive settlement which takes full consideration of relevant UN resolutions and treaties; and, where differences remain, to narrow and remove those through a process of negotiation focused on compromise formulations.
Peter Hain: The UK and the international community want to see a reunited Cyprus accede to the European Union. We are working hard to help all involved to move negotiations forward and co-operating fully with the UN Secretary-General's special adviser, Alvaro de Soto.
The UK supports agreement of the Helsinki European Council in 1999 that, taking into account all relevant factors, a political settlement on Cyprus would facilitate, but is not a precondition of, Cyprus' accession to the EU. Cyprus continues to make good progress in the accession negotiations and is expected to complete them at the Copenhagen European Council in December.
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