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Mr. Willis: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills if she will list the contracts awarded by her Department since January 2000 for (a) the Fast Track Teaching Programme, (b) the Teachers' International Professional Development Scheme and (c) leasing laptop computers to teachers, stating in each case (i) the name of the successful contractor and (ii) whether the contracts were subject to open tender. 
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the delivery of the Teachers' International Professional Development (TIPD) programme to the bodies listed below. The first three of these contracts were awarded to the organisations which had completed the relevant pilot work. The other four were subject to competitive tender to a number of selected providers:
1. British Council for the provision of short-term visits and exchanges
2. Technology Colleges Trust for the provision of short-term visits
3. League for the Exchange of Commonwealth Teachers for the provision of short-term visits
4. British Council for the provision of visits on the school determined element
5. National Foundation for Education Research for the evaluation of the TIPD programme
6. Technology Colleges Trust for the provision of short-term visits
7. League for the Exchange of Commonwealth Teachers for the provision of short-term visits;
the purchase of laptops under the Laptops for Teachers scheme to the suppliers listed below. Contracts were subject to open tender:
Acer UK Ltd.
Canon UK Ltd.
Compaq Computer Ltd.
DELL Computer Corporation Ltd.
Egton Consulting and Technical
Ergo Computing UK Ltd.
Hi-Grade Computers plc
IBM UK Ltd.
Links Education Limited
NEC Computers International
Novatech Direct Ltd.
PC World Business
Mr. Willis: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills, pursuant to her answer of 23 May, Official Report, column 468W, on unpaid advisers, if she will list the steps that were taken to ensure no conflicts of interest arose as a result of this appointment. 
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Mr. Willis: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how many and what percentage of pupils living in (a) a residential care home and (b) with foster parents took (i) authorised and (ii) unauthorised absence in the last five years for which figures are available broken down by (A) Government Office region and (B) local education authority. 
Mr. Miliband [holding answer 19 June 2002]: This level of detail is not available. Information on the number of pupils missing due to authorised and unauthorised absence is collected at school level and information on individual pupils cannot be identified from this data.
Mr. Willis: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills who is responsible for appointing (a) the chair and (b) the board of trustees of the (i) British Educational Communications and Technology Agency, (ii) National College of School Leadership, (iii) Teacher Training Agency, (iv) Technology College Trust and (v) Centre for Information on Language Teaching. 
Mr. Stephen Twigg: In November last year, the Department for Education and Skills jointly with the Department of Health published statutory guidance "Access to education for children and young people with Medical needs". The guidance sets out minimum standards
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of education for all children who are unable to attend school due to their medical needs, including those with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome/Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (CFS/ME).
Local Education Authorities' responsibilities towards pupils who are unable to attend school because of their medical needs should ensure that pupils are not at home without education for more than 15 working days and that children educated at home receive a minimum of five hours home tuition a week. The nature of the provision must be responsive to the demands of what can be a changing medical condition.
The Chief Medical Officer's report on Children and Young People with ME was published by the Department of Health in January this year, taking into account the recommendations of an independent working group. The report proposes ways in which clinicians and the National Health Service might improve the health and social care of those affected by CFS/ME. It also includes references to education provision.
Mr. Andrew Turner: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills if she will list the funded initiatives which have been introduced by her Department since 1997, stating (a) the level of funding in each year for each initiative and (b) whether those resources were provided direct to (i) schools, (ii) local education authorities and (iii) other bodies outside her direct control. 
Estelle Morris [holding answer 24 June 2002]: Details of spending by my Department including new initiatives funded from 199798 and plans up to 200304 are presented in Table 4.2 of the departmental annual report issued 12 June 2002 (CM 5402, pages 3536).
Schools funding is paid to local education authorities who are required to devolve the majority of funding to head teachers. Other funding is paid via other bodies including the Learning and Skills Council, the Higher Education Funding Council, Connexions partnerships, the Student Loans Company and the Sure Start programme.
Mr. Sheerman: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how many national training organisations have been wound up; how many have been replaced by skills sector councils; and how many will not be replaced. 
Mr. Ivan Lewis: We have not wound up any national training organisations although we removed their formal recognition from 31 March 2002. National training organisations are independent bodies and are free to carry on as entities in their own right. The continued funding, operation and staffing of former national training organisations are decisions for the board of each organisation.
We are, however, establishing a smaller, stronger network of sector skills councils in sectors where employers can demonstrate their proposals meet stringent sector skills councils' standards. Former national training organisations may make proposals for a sector skills council licence although it has never been the intention to replace national training organisations with sector skills councils on a head to head basis.
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