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Grammar Schools

Mr. Redwood: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills if she will make a statement on proposals for new grammar schools as part of her schools specialisation policy. [72888]

Mr. Miliband: Grammar schools are schools which were effectively wholly selective at the beginning of the 1997–98 school year. New grammar schools are not possible under current education legislation, and we have no intention of changing this.

School specialisation is concerned with a focus on curriculum subjects, not with selection for general academic ability.

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Secondary Transfer Places

Mr. Love: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what action is being taken to assist those local authorities with a shortfall of secondary transfer places for September; and if she will make a statement. [73017]

Mr. Miliband: It is for local education authorities to ensure they have sufficient school places to meet demand. Where an authority can demonstrate it has a shortfall of places it may apply to the Department for capital funding to create additional provision. LEAs with a projected shortfall of places submitted their capital bids to fund an increase in provision this year in September 2001, and allocations were announced in December 2001.

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Individual Learning Accounts

Mr. Steen: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what assessment she has made of the cost of the closure of (a) the Individual Learning Account programme, (b) the investigation by the ILA Compliance Unit and (c) referrals of ILA learning providers to the police. [70445]

Mr. Ivan Lewis [holding answer 18 July 2002]: The estimated cost to the Department to end June 2002 of: (a) closure of the Individual Learning Account (ILA) programme is £1,710,000; (b) investigation by the Department's ILA Compliance Unit is £570,000; and (c) referrals by the Department's Special Investigation Unit of ILA learning providers to the police is £190,000.

Foreign Languages

Mr. Willis: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what estimate she has made as to the number of schools that plan to make the teaching of a foreign language optional at Key Stage 4. [69229]

Stephen Twigg: Modern Foreign Languages remain a compulsory National Curriculum subject at key stage 4 and we expect schools to observe this.

The Green Paper 14–19: extending opportunities, raising standards proposes that the existing arrangements under which all young people must study a modern foreign language at key stage 4, unless their schools have used the disapplication procedures, is too constraining. The Green Paper therefore proposes that the statutory obligation for young people at Key Stage 4 to study a language, be replaced by a new statutory entitlement that would require schools to make the subject available to any young person wishing to study it.

Consultation only closed on 31 May 2002 and we are reflecting carefully on the views expressed during consultation before reaching our decision. We have indicated in the Green Paper that any curriculum changes would be subject to further consultation before their introduction.

We have made no estimates at this stage of the effect of our proposals on the study of modern foreign languages at key stage 4.

Somerset College for Arts and Technology

Mr. Flook: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what levels of funding for further education will be given to Somerset College for Arts and Technology in (a) 2002–03, (b) 2003–04 and (c) 2004–05. [73254]

Mr. Ivan Lewis: This is a matter for the Learning and Skills Council. I have therefore asked John Harwood, the Council's Chief Executive, to write to the hon. Gentleman with the information requested and to place a copy of his reply in the Library.

Learn Direct Plus

Mr. Flook: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how many people have enrolled on Learn Direct Plus in the constituency of Taunton since it began;

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how many courses are provided in Taunton constituency; how much funding has been provided for these courses; and if she will make a statement. [73255]

Mr. Ivan Lewis: 501 learners have enrolled on a learndirect course in the constituency of Taunton since the initiative was rolled out nationally in October 2000. Learners in Taunton can choose from the current portfolio of 692 learndirect courses, which can be accessed at a learndirect centre or at home, at work or other locations. We are unable to provide information on the amount of funding provided for courses in the Taunton constituency.

Further Education Colleges

Mr. Boswell: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what recent advice she has issued to further education colleges in connection with the education of young people aged between 14 and 16 years, with particular reference to legal issues including enrolment and child protection. [71909]

Stephen Twigg: The Department, in conjunction with the Learning and Skills Council, has issued detailed draft guidance on a range of legal issues in relation to the new "Increased Flexibility for 14–16 Year Olds" programme, which will be delivered largely by Further Education Colleges. This guidance covers child protection, health and safety, supervision and a range of other matters. Local LSCs were encouraged to share the guidance with FECs on the programme. A published version is expected in the Autumn.

Per Capita Funding

Virginia Bottomley: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what the per capita central Government funding was for (a) Surrey and (b) Durham. [72392]

Mr. Miliband: The following table shows for 2002–03 the overall level of recurrent funding per capita for pupils in Surrey and Durham. Other per capita funding for the other sectors of education are not collected by the Department.



1. Figures are rounded to the nearest £10.

2. Funding consists of Education Standard Spending plus all schools-related revenue grants in DfES' departmental expenditure limit which are relevant to pupils aged 4 to 19.

3. Calculations are based on full-time equivalent pupils aged 4 to 19 in maintained schools.

4. The figures are in 2001–02 prices based on the GDP deflators published by the Treasury on 28 June.

Leadership Incentive Grant

Mr. Andrew Turner: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills on what criteria the recipients of leadership incentive grant will be chosen; and why the grant is only available to secondary schools. [72315]

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Mr. Miliband [holding answer 23 July 2002]: Detailed criteria for the leadership incentive grant will be set out later in the year. The grant will be available to secondary schools in recognition of the particular challenges in their sector.

Schools Funding

Ian Lucas: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what extra funding, in addition to the education standard spending assessment, has been supplied to (a) schools and (b) local authorities in England as a result of successful bids since 1999 in each local authority. [71308]

Mr. Miliband [holding answer 18 July 2002]: The information requested is not held centrally in the Department and could therefore only be provided at disproportionate cost.

Most additional education funding is allocated and paid to local education authorities through the Standards Fund and Special Grant. Since April 2001, Standards Fund grants have been distributed by formula not on the basis of bids. The Government expects LEAs to devolve Standards Fund grants to schools by a fair formula, in which case schools should not have to apply for grant. All Special Grants are allocated to LEAs via specified formula by which they must pass on grant on to their schools.

Mr. Jenkins: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what contribution her Department made to determining the indices of deprivation to be used to allocate funds within the proposed new formula for the SSA for education. [71742]

Mr. Miliband: The Department for Education and Skills commissioned PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) to carry out a research project into additional educational needs or deprivation. The project was steered through the Education Funding Strategy Group, the Department's group of external stakeholders. The project used a survey to determine the cost and incidence of additional educational needs in 42 local education authorities, covering all types of LEA. Data from the survey has been used to inform the choice of indicators and the weights assigned to them in the formulae which underlie the exemplifications issued by the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister on 8 July. A copy of the report on the PwC project will be placed in the library of the House when it has been finalised.

Mr. Jenkins: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills (1) what assessment she made of alternatives to the former DTLR's Index of Multiple Deprivation 2000 in determining funding for different levels of deprivation in the schools' formula budget; and for what reason the Index was not used; [71745]

Mr. Miliband: The Department has considered deprivation indicators, including the Index of Multiple Deprivation, on a number of occasions over the past 15 months in its work with the Education Funding

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Strategy Group on the new education funding formula. In the education options in the consultation paper issued on 8 July, the overall Index of Multiple Deprivation has not been used: it is not suitable as a basis for reflecting deprivation in the distribution of funding for additional education needs, since it incorporates many measures of deprivation not relevant to the educational needs of children. The options set out in the 8 July consultation document include at LEA level a number of the indicators that are part of the IMD: children in families on income support; low birth weight; and English as an Additional Language.

Mr. Jenkins: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills whether the Department for Education and Skills has formulated a sum for basic allocation within the new SSA formula for education for (a) under fives, (b) primary schools and (c) secondary schools, as envisaged in the consultation paper on reforming the Formula Grant System issued on 8 July. [71744]

Mr. Miliband: The sum to be allocated for basic funding within the new SSA formula will depend on decisions taken following consultation on the structure of the formula, and on the overall sums available within education standard spending following the Spending Review 2002.

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