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8 Jan 2004 : Column 474Wcontinued
Simon Hughes: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what the average student loan taken out by students in (a) each region and (b) England was in each year since 199798. 
Alan Johnson: The tables show the average full-time income-contingent loan taken out by students in the English Government Office Regions and in England and the average mortgage style loan taken out by students in England.
|Government Office Region(12),(13)||1999/2000||2000/01(14)||2001/02(15)||2002/03(16)|
|Yorkshire and Humberside||3,110||3,080||3,130||n/a|
|East of England||3,180||3,150||3,190||n/a|
n/a = Regional breakdown not yet available.
(9) New student support arrangements were introduced from academic year 1998/99. New students in 1998/99 (apart from certain specified exceptions) received support for maintenance expenditure through means-tested grants (comprising about a quarter of the support available) and non income-assessed student loans (comprising about three quarters of the support available). From 1999/2000 students who entered higher education after 1998/99 received support for maintenance expenditure through loans, of which approximately three quarters of the value was non income-assessed. Loans made under these arrangements are repayable on an income contingent basis.
(10) Excludes the fixed rate loans (£500) for eligible part-time students, introduced in September 2000.
(11) Figures have been rounded to the nearest £10.
(12) Government Office Region of domicile of student.
(13) Regional level data have been taken from available information and may include a small number of loans which have been authorised for payment but not paid.
(14) The apparent fall in the average value of income-contingent loan taken out in 2000/01 can be explained mainly by the fact that this was the third year of this loan scheme; students on the third year of a three year course will receive the final year rate of loan which is at a lower rate as it does not cover the summer vacation. This effect is not present in 1999/2000 and has been levelled out in the years subsequent to 2000/01. Additionally, this is likely to be the first year in which those students on sandwich courses have their placement year and are therefore in receipt of the reduced rate of loan.
(15) Latest year for which data by region are available.
Student Loans Company.
(17) Loans available to students who entered higher education up to academic year 1997/98 and those who entered in 1998/99 under existing arrangements. These loans are non-income assessed and are repayable on a fixed term, mortgage style, basis.
(18) Figures have been rounded to the nearest £10.
Student Loans Company.
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Data on income-contingent loans at a regional, or England level are not available for academic year 1998/99; data on the domicile of students taking out fixed rate mortgage style loans (normally those who entered higher education before 1998/99) are only available at a UK level for 1997/98 and 1998/99. For subsequent years, data are not available below England level because applications are made through the students' education institution.
Mr. Gibb: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills pursuant to his answer of 11 December 2003, Official Report, column 613W, on teaching methods, what the specific provisions are in the (a) primary and (b) key stage three strategies in relation to the way pupils are grouped. 
Mr. Stephen Twigg: The design of effective lessons is fundamental to the pursuit of high quality teaching and learning whatever the age of the pupil, their level of ability, or the subject or skill being learned.
The Primary Strategy recommends that literacy and mathematics lessons begin with whole class teaching sessions followed by guided reading and writing activities, during which pupils are grouped according to their individual learning needs.
The Key Stage 3 National Strategy recommends a consideration of pupil grouping as part of classroom organisation which is one contributory factor towards effective lesson design. Furthermore, the Strategy has produced a range of materials for schools (such as critical teaching units, literacy progress units, Springboard 7, learning challenge and booster materials) to use in meeting the needs of pupils below expected levels. These allow schools, depending on their particular local circumstances, the flexibility of being able to provide whole class teaching; to re-group pupils according to their needs and abilities; provide within-class pupil grouping and one-to-one coaching or mentoring.
Mr. Forth: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills pursuant to his answer of 4 December, Official Report, column 194W, on truancy, if he will list the programmes within the Behaviour Improvement Programme 2002 to 2004; and what the (a) purpose and (b) cost of each was. [R] 
Mr. Ivan Lewis: The Behaviour Improvement Programme funds a range of measures to improve behaviour, reduce exclusions, provide full-time education for excluded pupils, reduce truancy, improve attendance and provide key workers for children at risk of exclusion, truancy and crime. Different measures are
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adopted by local education authorities and Excellence in Cities partnerships to reflect local priorities. They typically include:
expanded Learning Support Units, which provide in-school education for disruptive pupils outside mainstream classes;
additional Learning Mentors, who provide support for individual pupils with behaviour and attendance problems;
additional time for senior school staff to focus on behaviour and attendance issues;
electronic registration systems for schools;
enhanced Pupil Referral Units and other forms of alternative provision for excluded pupils;
additional services on school sites to increase community involvement; and
support for parents of disaffected or excluded pupils.
David Winnick: To ask the Parliamentary Secretary, Department for Constitutional Affairs pursuant to his answer of 18 December 2003, Official Report, column 1115W, when the hon. Member for Walsall, North will receive a reply to his letter of 13 November to Lord Filkin; and why the reply was not sent by 22 December. 
Mr. Leslie: Lord Filkin wrote on 7 January 2004 to my hon. Friend the Member for Walsall, North in response to his letter of 13 November 2003. I apologise for the delay, unfortunately administrative errors prevented an earlier reply.
Adam Price: To ask the Prime Minister what representations he and members of the Government have received from LNM Holdings in the last year. 
The Prime Minister: As far as I am aware I have received none and my office has made inquiries with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, the Department for Trade and Industry and the Department for International Development, who are also not aware of any representations.
Mr. Viggers: To ask the Prime Minister what discussions he has held recently with representatives of political parties on the subject of proportional representation. 
The Prime Minister: I have had no recent discussions on this issue.
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