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Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what was the cost of collecting tuition fees from students in the London borough of Havering in the last year for which figures are available. 
To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how many children in Kingston and Surbiton constituency attended nursery in each of the last 10 years
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for which figures are available; and how many children in Kingston and Surbiton have taken up free nursery places since the policy was introduced. 
Beverley Hughes: All four-year-olds have been entitled to a free early education place since 1998 and from April 2004 this entitlement was extended to all three-year-olds. The free entitlement consists of a minimum of five two and a half hour sessions per week for 33 weeks of the year for six terms before statutory school age, which is the term following their fifth birthday.
Figures for January 2005 show that all four-year-old children receive some form of free entitlement. The figure for three-year-olds is 96 per cent. This covers all
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maintained, private, voluntary and independent providers and represents 535,100 three-year-olds and 568,300 four-year-olds.
The available information on the number of free nursery education places taken up by three and four-year-olds in Kingston and Surbiton parliamentary constituency area and Kingston upon Thames local authority is shown in the tables.
The latest figures on early education places for three and four-year-olds in England were published in Statistical First Release 43/2005 Provision for children under five years of age in EnglandJanuary 2005 (final)" in September, which is available on my Department's website www.dfes.gov.uk/rsgateway/
January each year
|Maintained nursery and primary schools(42)||Other maintained and private, voluntary and independent providers||Total 3-year-olds||Maintained nursery and primary schools(43)||Other maintained and private, voluntary and independent providers||Total 4-year-olds|
|Position in January each year||Maintained nursery and primary schools(43)||Other maintained and private, voluntary and independent providers||Total 3-year-olds||Maintained nursery and primary schools(44)||Other maintained and private, voluntary and independent providers||Total 4-year-olds|
Changes in pupil figures may arise from changes to the underlying population in the local authority area and other factors. However, my Department do not publish population figures for individual age cohorts at sub-national level because of the unreliability of the underlying population estimates. The Office for National Statistics publish sub-national population estimates in five-year age bands.
David Taylor: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what funding is available to parents who wish to educate at home children with learning disabilities who are over 16 years of age. 
Bill Rammell [holding answer 31 October 2005]: As with children of compulsory school age my Department does not provide extra funding for parents of young people aged 16 and over who choose to educate their children at home. Resources for post-16 education and training are allocated by the Learning and Skills Council (LSC) to local authorities, further education colleges and other providers to enable all young people a place in education or training. The LSC also supports a network of specialist colleges for learners with severe learning difficulties and/or disabilities and supports some young people who learn at home because their medical condition does not allow them to attend school or college. Parents of young people can receive advice from the Connexions Service about the types of provision that may be suitable for their children.
Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills if she will assess the effect of the proposed redundancies on each office of the Learning and Skills Council in (a) Hampshire and (b) the Isle of Wight. 
Bill Rammell: The LSC is embarking upon a major transformation programme that will make it a smaller, more dynamic and more customer-focused organisation. This will build upon its existing strengths; further develop its relationships with providers and with its partners, and help push the highest proportion of its funding out through colleges and providers into front line delivery. At local level, the LSC will develop small teams of professional staff who will support the delivery of its priority objectives through strategic relationships with colleges, providers and other key stakeholders and so ensure that the needs of local employers and learners are met. I fully support the changes the LSC is making as I believe it will help bring about an organisation that is fit for purpose.
The effects on organisation and staffing are matters for the LSC. I have therefore asked Mark Haysom, the LSC's Chief Executive, to write to the hon. Gentleman with further information. A copy of his reply will be placed in the Library.
The purpose of our programme of change at the LSC is to ensure we develop a structure which is fit for purpose as we take forward our agenda for change with colleges and other post 16 providers of education and training. Central to the arrangements will be strong professional local teams developing strategic relationships with all the key players in each locality, supported by a Regional Service Centre and a slimline National Office. We are committed to maintaining a presence in each of our local LSC areas.
We are currently in the early stages of working through how best to implement this policy in each part of the country, so I am afraid that at this stage I cannot set out specifically how the arrangements for Hampshire and the Isle of Wight will be taken forward. But I can assure you that at the heart of our deliberations will be how best the LSC can help meet the needs of learners, employers, communities and the economy across the area.
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