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5 Dec 2002 : Column 940W—continued

NVQs

Paul Holmes: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how many students have received free tuition to study national vocational qualifications in (a) plumbing, (b) bricklaying, (c) bridge to construction (or intermediate construction award), (d) painting and decorating and (e) wood occupations, in each year since the establishment of the courses. [83766]

Mr. Ivan Lewis: The question asks about free tuition on NVQ courses. The information available does not discriminate between those who get full and partial fee remission. The following figures therefore include both.

In 2000–01 in further education sector colleges in England, tuition fees were waived (fully or partially) for:


In 1999–2000 in further education sector colleges in England, tuition fees were waived (fully or partially) for:


Paul Holmes: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills (1) how many tutors were employed in further education colleges teaching national vocational qualifications in (a) plumbing, (b) bricklaying, (c) bridge to construction (or intermediate construction award), (d) painting and decorating and (e) wood occupations, in each year since the establishment of the courses; [83767]

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Margaret Hodge: Information on tutors in FE teaching national vocational qualifications is available only for broad subject levels.

In 2000–01 there were 3,623 tutors teaching construction in FE colleges in England.

Information on the recruitment of tutors in FE, their retention and average length of time in employment is not available.

Prison Education Courses

Mr. Oaten: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills (1) how much was available in each prison for education courses in each year since 1995 at current prices; and what the percentage increase was in each year; [84554]

Mr. Ivan Lewis [holding answer 2 December 2002]: The information available has been provided in the form of a table, copies of which have been placed in the Libraries.

School Closures

Mr. Hoban: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what representations he has received concerning the closure of schools in South Shields; and if he will place these in the Library. [85553]

Mr. Miliband: The Secretary of State and his Department have received 16 letters from Headteachers, School Governors, parents and members of the public about South Tyneside local education authority's proposals for the reorganisation of primary education.

Truancy

Mr. Willis: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what percentage of children who truanted from school in 2001–02 gained one or more GCSEs. [85348]

Mr. Ivan Lewis [holding answer 4 December 2002]: The only available source of data on the GCSE attainment of young people who truanted from school is the Youth Cohort Study (YCS).

The latest data available from the YCS are for people who took their GCSEs in the summer of 1999. This shows that of those who occasionally truanted during year 11, 95 per cent. reported gaining at least one GCSE, of those who persistently truanted during year 11, 79 per cent. reported gaining at least one GCSE.

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ENVIRONMENT, FOOD AND RURAL AFFAIRS

Furazolidone

Mr. Wyatt: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs whether the nitrofuran antibiotic furazolidone is banned for use in the UK; and if he will make a statement. [85005]

Mr. Morley [holding answer 3 December 2002]: Furazolidone is included in Annex IV of Council Directive 2377/90EC, so its administration to food-producing animals is banned, both in the UK, and in the European Community. The Veterinary Medicines Directorate (VMD) run two surveillance schemes for residues of veterinary medicines and banned substances in UK-produced and imported produce. These are overseen by the independent Veterinary Residues Committee (VRC).

In 2001, the VMD analysed 453 samples of bovine, pig and sheep kidney; and 58 samples of eggs for furazolidone under their statutory surveillance programme for UK produce. A further 86 samples of animal feed were analysed for nitrofurans. All samples were free of detectable residues of these compounds.

Auction Marts

Mr. Peter Duncan: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if she will make a statement on the role of auction marts in increased bio-security. [84167]

Mr. Morley: Livestock auction markets have an important role in the marketing of farm animals between the various stages of production. However, markets do pose a risk of disease spread through mixing and dispersal of animals during market operations. The Department has sought to mitigate this risk through rules on bio-security at markets, and controls over the movement of animals to and from market premises.

Bovine TB

Mr. Llwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what evaluation is being relied upon by her Department in respect of the possible link between badgers and the spread of bovine tuberculosis; and if she will make a statement. [84239]

Mr. Morley [holding answer 3 December 2002]: A badger culling field trial is being carried out as part of DEFRA's extensive bovine tuberculosis (TB) research programme. The trial was designed by the Independent Scientific Group for Cattle TB (ISG) to evaluate what role, if any, badgers play in the transmission of bovine TB to cattle and whether badger culling is an effective or sustainable bovine TB control mechanism. It will provide epidemiological data on the occurrence and prevalence of TB in badgers, its relationship to population density and social group size and the spatial relationship between TB-infected badgers and TB breakdowns in cattle herds.

The ISG advise that it is too early for a full analysis of results. It is a basic rule for scientific trials that results are not published prematurely. It has however been

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possible to complete a preliminary analysis of the risk factors associated with cattle TB, and this is set out in the ISG's Third Report, available in the House Library.

Climate Change

Harry Cohen: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what discussions she has held with her EU counterparts on proposals to introduce legislation concerning climate change; and if she will make a statement. [84646]

Mr. Meacher: I have regular discussions with my EU counterparts on climate change issues.

Last year we agreed Council conclusions on the European Commission's communication on the European Climate Change Programme. More recently we have discussed the European Commission's proposal for a Directive to establish a Community greenhouse gas emissions trading scheme. I will be discussing this again at the Environment Council on 9 and 10 December.

We are also discussing with the commission the preparation of legislation on reducing emissions of fluorinated gases (hydrofluorocarbons, perfluorocarbons and sulphur hexafluoride) that also fall under the Kyoto Protocol.

Mr. Blunt: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if she will list the (a) schemes and (b) bodies her Department contributes funding to which are concerned with climate change. [85484]

Mr. Meacher: The main schemes for which my Department provides funding are the UK Emissions Trading Scheme the New Home Energy Efficiency scheme (or Warm Front) and the Community Energy Programme. The main bodies for which my Department provides funding are the Carbon Trust, the Energy Saving Trust, the Hadley Centre, the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (core budget and trust funds), the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Greentie and the OECD Annex 1 expert group.

Alan Simpson: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs which of the sector associations party to a Climate Change Levy umbrella agreement have supplied her with information specified in Schedule 3 of those agreements; what the dates were of each supply; and which of those sector associations have supplied her with information specified in Part 2 of Schedule 3 of those agreements. [82871]

Mr. Meacher: Under clause 6.5 of the umbrella agreements, sector associations are not required to submit information specified in either Part 1 or Part 2 of Schedule 3 for the first target period until 31 January 2003, extended by agreement to 17 February. No such information has yet been supplied by sector associations, though data has been received for the single company agreement under paragraph 47 of Schedule 6 to the Finance Act 2000.

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