Previous Section Index Home Page

3 Jun 2003 : Column 215W—continued


Mr. Wray: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what changes have been made to

3 Jun 2003 : Column 216W

IT lessons in schools since 1997; what advanced courses are available to students who are particularly proficient; and if he will make a statement on levels of computer provision. [115128]

Mr. Miliband: ICT is a priority for this Government and is compulsory for all pupils aged five to 16. We have put in place the infrastructure to enable schools to use ICT in teaching and learning across the curriculum by equipping schools with modern ICT facilities; creating a National Grid for Learning that provides a rich source of classroom materials and providing training for teachers through the New Opportunities Fund. Our Key Stage 3 strategy for 11 to 14-year-olds has a specific focus on teaching and learning using ICT. Our Key Stage 4 proposals for 14 to 16-year-olds include greater development of ICT skills through other subjects and greater opportunity for pupils to gain qualifications which recognise their ICT capability. Ofsted reports show ICT teaching is good in over three primary schools in five and is generally sound in secondary schools.

There is a range of courses designed to allow students to demonstrate their proficiency in ICT. For students who wish to develop their skills as advanced ICT users, the GCE A level is available. Alternatively, the GCE A level in computing is appropriate for proficient students with aspirations of becoming ICT specialists.

In 2002 there was an average of one computer for every 9.7 pupils in primary schools and one for every six pupils in secondary schools. This compares with one for every 17.6 pupils in primary and one per 8.7 pupils in secondary schools in 1998. Over 100,000 teachers have received a computer through centrally-funded initiatives such as the Laptops for Teachers scheme.

Mr. Gibb: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills if he will make a statement on his Department's strategy for developing information and communications technology in schools. [115250]

Mr. Charles Clarke: Proposals for a cross-sector strategy for e-learning will be published later this year. However, "Fulfilling the Potential", a document clarifying the directions we would like schools to travel with information and communications technologies, and the outcome we seek, was published on 21 May 2003. Copies of this have been placed in the Library.

Learning and Skills Council

Paul Holmes: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills when it will be possible to refer complaints about the Learning and Skills Council to the Parliamentary Ombudsman; and if he will make a statement. [114465]

Margaret Hodge: The Learning and Skills Council will be brought under the jurisdiction of the Ombudsman in the near future. I will write to the hon. Member when this occurs. In the meantime the Learning and Skills Council does have systems in place for handling complaints and the overwhelming majority are dealt with effectively.

Local Education Authority Funding

Mr. Greg Knight: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what the average funding per pupil

3 Jun 2003 : Column 217W

for local education authorities in England and Wales was in each of the last two years; and what the funding per pupil for the East Riding of Yorkshire was in each year. [115912]

Mr. Miliband: My Department is not responsible for funding in Wales. The information requested for England and East Riding of Yorkshire is contained in the following table:

Total funding per pupil aged 4 to 19

East Riding of Yorkshire3,0603,150


1. Figures reflect education SSA settlement figures (all sub-blocks, excluding, where relevant, the funding for four-year-olds at private, voluntary and independent institutions) plus all revenue grants in DfES's departmental expenditure limits relevant to pupils aged 4 to 19 (excluding EMA and a handful of others where it is not possible to get figures on a comparable basis over time).

2. The pupil numbers used to convert £ million figures to £ per pupil are the maintained pupils underlying the SSA settlement calculations.

3. 2002–03 SSA figures are net LSC i.e. do not include the element for LSC allocations in respect of sixth forms. LSC is treated as grant.

4. Figures are as reported by LEAs and are taken from the 2002–03 section 52 budget statements.

5. Real terms, 2001–02 prices, based on GDP deflators as at April 2003.

6. Figures are rounded to the nearest £10. Totals may not sum due to rounding.

Mental Health

Mr. Paul Marsden: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how many sick days were lost over the last year by his Department through staff mental health problems. [112001]

Mr. Charles Clarke: My Department is committed to managing sickness absence effectively and to maintain its efforts to try and meet the 2003 target for reduced sickness absence as set out in its Service Delivery Agreement.

In line with its legal obligation, the Department aims to provide a safe working environment for all its employees and remains committed to meeting the targets for reducing the number of working days lost due to work related injuries and illness set out in the Government's Revitalising Health and Safety initiative. These have been incorporated into the Departmental Health and Safety Policy statement.

In the calendar year 2002, 9473 days in DfES were lost because of sick leave due to anxiety, depression, stress and other mental illness.

Micro Schools Initiative

Mr. Gibb: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills if he will make a statement on the Micro Schools Initiative in London. [114215]

Mr. Stephen Twigg: There is no 'Micro Schools Initiative' as such in London. In our recent document "The London Challenge: Transforming London Secondary Schools", we say that as part of the London Challenge programme, we will support the development

3 Jun 2003 : Column 218W

of innovations which have been successfully tried in other urban schools. We give as an example the 'small schools' model, which breaks large schools into more manageable and personal units, and which has been successfully tried in some parts of the United States of America.


Mr. Battle: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how many (a) peripatetic and (b) staff musical instrument teachers work in state schools in Leeds; how many full-time equivalent staff there are; and what the average number of hours worked per week was in the latest period for which figures are available. [116184]

Mr. Miliband: In January 2002 there were 6,080 full-time equivalent regular teachers in the maintained sector in Leeds, 60 of whom were peripatetic. The number of musical instrument teachers in the maintained schools sector is not collected centrally.

The average number of hours worked for all full-time teachers in the maintained schools sector in England in March 2000 was 52.8 hours per week during term time. Figures are not available at local authority level.

Mr. Battle: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills (1) what provisions are available for assisting talented musicians from Leeds West in state schools to achieve excellence as musicians; [116185]

Mr. Miliband: The Department does not collect this information centrally, either by year group or at constituency level.

However, as a result of last year's national survey we do now have data on the overall music provision for schools provided by LEA Music Services. LEAs returned this data on a confidential basis and so figures for individual LEAs cannot be released. I can, however, offer a national estimate of the number of pupils learning a musical instrument. According to the survey returns:

in England, 253,000 pupils at Key Stage 2 are currently receiving regular instrumental or vocal tuition provided by LEA Music Services (around 10.3 per cent of all Key Stage two pupils on average) 454,600 pupils in Key Stages 1–4 are receiving instrumental or vocal tuition provided by LEA Music Services (around 8 per cent of pupils on average).

Further data from the survey, at national level, are available in the form of a published report. The report can be found on the DfES Music Services website at Hard copies have been placed in the House Library.

3 Jun 2003 : Column 219W

The Department is strongly committed to music education and we have a number of projects underway to identify and nurture talented young musicians. Talented Leeds pupils will have access to Junior Conservatoires such as the Leeds College of Music and the National Youth Orchestra as well as the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester.

Next Section Index Home Page