Margaret Hodge: The Department has not made an assessment of applied behaviour analysis (ABA). The Department did publish a research report, compiled by the University of Birmingham, called "Educational Interventions for Children with Autism: A Literature Review of Recent and Current Research" in 1998. This found that almost all the interventions, including behavioural approaches, could point to evidence of success but that there was no well-founded evidence to show that any one approach was more effective than all the others nor which children on the autistic spectrum benefited most from which intervention. However, it did find that there were sufficiently positive findings across all studies of early intervention, including behavioural ones, to suggest that some form of early intervention is warranted.
The Code of Practice on Special Educational Needs (SEN) advises schools and local education authorities (LEAs) that children's needs should be assessed individually and that provision should address the particular needs of the individual child. The Department's "Good Practice Guidance" on autistic spectrum disorders lists ABA as one of the approaches that is available to schools and LEAs. The Inclusion Development Programme, announced as part of the Department's SEN strategy in February last year, will be looking at developing our evidence base about what works in educating children with ASDs, including evidence on ABA, and building a consensus about how to implement good practice most effectively.
Charles Hendry: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills pursuant to the answer of 6 December 2004, Official Report, column 296W, on departmental initiatives (young people), if she will list the projects or initiatives which have been launched by her Department since 1997 which are no longer in operation. 
Margaret Hodge [holding answer 20 December 2004]: Since its inception in 2001, the Department for Education and Skills has kept under review the support it provides for young people aged 13 to 19 with the aim of ensuring that that support meets young people's current and anticipated needs.
Within its current areas of responsibility there have been a number of projects and initiatives intended to help young people which have begun since 1997 and which have become part of our mainstream provision. Quality Protects, launched in 1998 by the Department of Health as part of the Government's wider strategy for tackling social exclusion, focused on children and young people looked after by councils, in the child protection system, and other children in need. The programme transferred to the Department for Education and Skills as part of the machinery of Government changes in 2003. The original provision of three years had already been extended to five years, with the programme being mainstreamed from 2004. The Young Runaways Development Project, for which the Children and Young People's Unit provided funding in 200203 and 200304, transferred to DfES and has now ended. Both programmes demonstrated effective ways of meeting the needs of children and young people which are enshrined in the Children Act 2004 and the Every Child Matters: Change for Children programme, launched on 1 December, and which have introduced, among other provision, a statutory duty to promote the education and wellbeing of looked after children, a statutory duty on organisations working with children and young people to safeguard them and promote their welfare, and children's trust arrangements to focus integrated, multi-disciplinary support on the needs of children and young people. Similarly, Active Citizens in Schools, an award scheme that empowers young people to get involved in projects that benefit the school and wider community, ran as a pilot project from Spring 2002 until September 2004, and is now being made available to schools nationally through a Framework and Toolkit funded by DfES. Schools can then adapt the scheme to fit their needs.
Other projects and initiatives have ended as they have been subsumed within other programmes: Connexions Summer Plus, which became part of the anti-crime Positive Activities for Young People programme; and New Start, which paved the way for Learning Gateway
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which evolved into Entry to Employment (E2E), the work-based programme for young people aged 1618 not yet ready or able to enter an apprenticeship, sustained employment or further vocational learning opportunities.
Peter Bottomley: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills for what reasons the Early Interventions project was changed to Family Resolutions; what the differences are between the two; and what the mechanisms for the change were. 
Margaret Hodge: The Family Resolutions Pilot Project is designed to test the effectiveness of group work and information and parent planning measures in helping separating or separated parents reach agreement about contact and residence for their children, without needing formal family court proceedings. The Family Resolutions Pilot Project does not replace any other "Early Interventions project". However, its development has been informed by a set of early intervention proposals that were received by the Government in autumn 2003, which had been drawn up by an ad hoc group, chaired by a judge. The Government-led Steering Group, set up to take forward the development and delivery of a pilot project, chose the name of the project, in recognition of the focus of the intervention and the late stage in the separation of the parents at which it would take place.
The design of the Government's Family Resolutions Pilot Project drew on the experience of a range of similar approaches from other jurisdictions, in particular Florida, but also Scandinavia, California and Canada. However, the Florida early interventions approach differs from the Family Resolutions Pilot Project in that participation is compulsory in the Florida jurisdiction. Participation in the Family Resolutions Pilot Project could only have been made compulsory if there had first been a change in primary legislation. This would also have been necessary if we had wished to replicate the approach of other jurisdictions, in terms of any legal presumption of contact for parents and in terms of any expectation that parents must adhere to a prescribed pattern of contact, drawn from standard templates applied by the court.
Under the Children Act 1984 the welfare of the child is the court's paramount consideration when determining any question with respect to a child's upbringing. Case law decided under the Children Act 1989 has established that it is generally in a child's best interests to have contact with both of his parents but there is no statutory presumption of contact nor does the Children Act provide standard patterns of contact to be prescribed to parents by the court. The Parenting Plans, which we are currently revising, will provide a set of templates which seek to show in practice the sort of contact arrangements that work well for children of different ages and circumstances. These will be available at all points throughout the systemin solicitors' offices as well as through advice and mediation services. They will make clear, in practical terms, arrangements that are generally beneficial for children. They are intended to be used as practical aids, both by parents themselves as well as by solicitors, conciliators and mediators, to assist parents to reach reasonable
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agreements. They will seek to illustrate what the courts might well decide if the case went to a full hearing. The revised Plans will shortly be published in draft form and will be the subject of consultation. Once published in final form, they will be used in both in-court conciliation services and the Family Resolutions Pilot Project.
Claire Ward: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what the funding per (a) primary and (b) secondary school pupil in Hertfordshire was in (a) 1995 and (b) 2004; and what the percentage change was. 
Mr. Stephen Twigg: As a result of data changes and changes to the funding system, comparable figures are not available for 199596 and 199697. The following table shows per pupil figures in real terms for 199798 and 200405.
|Percentage increase from 199798 to 200405
|Pupils aged 310
|Pupils aged 1115
Mr. Evans: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how much funding has been made available to schools in Ribble Valley and Fulwood from the Special Education Needs Standard Fund since 2002. 
Standards Fund grants are allocated to local education authorities and devolved by them to schools. Lancashire county council received £1,865,070 in 200203 and £1,869,367 in 200304 through the Standards Fund grant for Special Educational Needs, including the local education authority contribution of 50 per cent. From 200405, the Special Educational Needs Grant became part of the School Development Grant, allocated to schools to use for any purpose to promote school improvement, including special educational needs. The notional amount allocated for special educational needs within Lancashire's School Development Grant is £1,944,142 in 200405.
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In 200203 and 200304, LEAs were permitted to retain up to 50 per cent. of their Special Educational Needs grant to support central services. In 200405, LEAs are allowed to retain the same cash amount from their School Development Grant as they had in 200304.
Mr. Ivan Lewis: Figures for Ribble Valley and Fulwood cannot be provided as information at parliamentary constituency level is not available. The following table shows the number of starts on Apprenticeships in (i) the Lancashire Learning and Skills Council (LSC) area between April 2001 and the end of July 2004; and (ii) in the two Training and Enterprise Council (TEC) areas that amalgamated into Lancashire LSCELTEC and LAWTEC between April 1997 and March 2001. Figures are expressed in numbers rather then as percentages as population estimates are not available for TEC areas.
|Apprenticeship at level 2
|April 1997 to
|April 1998 to
|April 1999 to
|April 2000 to
|April 2001 to July 2002
|August 2002 to July 2003
|August 20003 to July 2004