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29 Nov 2005 : Column 476W—continued

Building Schools for the Future Programme

Jim Cousins: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills who the owner of (a) assets created by and (b) land associated with a Local Education Partnership under the Building Schools for the Future programme will be (i) during and (ii) after the term of the private finance initiative. [32428]

Jacqui Smith [holding answer 28 November 2005]: Local Education Partnerships are joint ventures, usually between local authorities, Partnerships for Schools and a private sector partner, which will deliver Building Schools for the Future (BSF) investment, using both conventional and private finance initiative (PFI) funding. They will not at any time own or control the assets of any school.

Where a school is in a PFI contract, including in BSF, ownership of the land and buildings of the school is vested in the private sector partner for the life of the contract by way of an operating licence or lease. After that time, ownership of these assets reverts to the local authority, or in the case of a voluntary aided, trust or foundation school, to the voluntary aided body, the trust or the governing body as is appropriate. These bodies own the freehold of the land throughout the contract.

Bullying

Dan Norris: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills (1) what assessment she has made of the effectiveness of different approaches to tackling bullying in schools; and if she will make a statement; [31344]

(2) what assessment her Department has made of the effectiveness of the no blame approach to tackling school bullying; and if she will make a statement. [31345]

Jacqui Smith: Our guidance to schools on tackling bullying Don't Suffer in Silence" has been externally evaluated by researchers at Goldsmith's college, University of London. The results, though based on a fairly low response rate from schools, show that the schools found that the pack met their expectations and helped in drawing up their anti-bullying policies.

This evaluation included research into the perceived success of the anti-bullying strategies and interventions recommended in the guidance. Schools generally reported a high level of satisfaction with the interventions they had used. I have placed a copy of the research brief for this project in the Library.
 
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The key feature of the 'No Blame' approach, is that it adopts an explicit stance of discouraging punishment as a response to bullying. The Department does not support this stance and neither does the Anti-Bullying Alliance. Our guidance is clear that support and mediation strategies to change behaviour can, and should, be used in tandem with sanctions where appropriate. We are reviewing the guidance to make this even more explicit.

As we do not promote the 'No Blame' approach for use in schools, we have not undertaken any assessment of its effectiveness.

Departmental Priorities

Mr. Jim Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of Statefor Education and Skills what priorities the Department has set for 2005–06; and if she will make a statement. [19666]

Ruth Kelly: My priorities for this year are:

Improving school education by tailoring the offer to the needs of each pupil, allowing schools greater freedom to specialise in what they do best and increasing choice for all parents and pupils so that they have access to the best schools, as set out in the Schools White Paper, Higher Standards, Better Schools For All";

These will all be achieved within the context of a Department which is smaller and more strategic, with the skills to raise standards for children and learners across the board.

The Department's five-year strategy for children and learners (Command ref: 6272] sets out our longer term priorities.

Departmental Staff

Mike Penning: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how many personnel were employed in her Department in each year since 1997, broken down by (a) civil servants, (b) contractors and (c) other staff. [27578]

Maria Eagle: I refer the hon. Member to table c of civil service statistics 2004, which shows permanent FTE staff numbers between 1998 and 2004 for each Department and agency. Civil service statistics 2004 are available in the Library and on the Cabinet Office statistics website at:

http://www.civilservice.gov.uk/management of the civil service/statistics/civil service statistics/index.asp
 
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The data for 1997 is in table c in civil service statistics 2003.

The number of contractors engaged by my Department is not collected centrally and could only be obtained at disproportionate cost.

The number of days that agency staff were engaged in my Department in each of the last three complete calendar years were:
Number
200416,940
200327,087
200231,229

Statistics on agency staff are held in days only. Numbers for earlier years are not available.

Mr. Gibb: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills pursuant to her answer of 1 November 2005, Official Report, column 997W, on departmental staff, how much her Department has paid the tutor in basic skills to date. [27962]

Bill Rammell: My Department has made no payment to the basic skills tutor as adult basic skills tuition is delivered at no charge to learners who are eligible for funding from the Learning and Skills Council.

We have paid the Adult Education Service £1500 to tailor a programme for facilities management staff in the Department.

Examination Standards

Bob Spink: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what discussions she has had with (a) examination boards and (b) awarding bodies in respect of (i) examinations, (ii) marking and (iii) grading for 2006; and if she will make a statement. [33113]

Jacqui Smith: Ministers in the Department have had no discussion with awarding bodies in respect of examinations, marking and grading for 2006. Awarding bodies are independent of Government. It is the role of the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority and the other regulatory authorities to regulate awarding bodies and to discuss with them issues around standards and delivery of public examinations.

Free School Meals

Mr. Andrew Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how many recipients of free school meals there are in each school in the Oxford, East constituency. [32150]

Jacqui Smith: Information on free school meals in maintained nursery, primary and secondary schools in the Oxford, East constituency is shown in the table.
 
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Maintained nursery, primary and secondary schools(72): School meal arrangements(73), Oxford, East parliamentary constituency,January 2005





URN




LEA




Estab




School name




Number on roll

Number of pupils taking free school meals(74)

Percentage of pupils taking free school meals(74)
Number of pupils known to be eligible for free school mealsPercentage of pupils known to be eligible for free school meals
1229679311005Bartlemas Nursery School751114.71114.7
1229689311006Headington Nursery School7134.245.6
1229699311010Grandpont Nursery School69(75)(75)(75)(75)
1229709311011Slade Nursery School55712.7n/an/a
1230219312352St. Nicholas Primary School279259.03612.9
1230279312401Sandhills Community Primary School19084.2157.9
1230449312521Bayards Hill Primary School3517822.216145.9
1230469312525East Oxford Primary School2918629.611037.8
1230479312527The Windmill Primary School386246.2348.8
1230489312529New Marston Primary School235208.55925.1
1230499312531Rose Hill Primary School3296921.013039.5
1230529312539Orchard Meadow Primary School32810030.515747.9
1230539312543Larkrise Primary School2934214.36622.5
1230749312589Wood Farm Primary School2353213.68335.3
1230789312593Pegasus School473n/an/a15633.0
1230889312606Windale Community Primary School3176620.812037.9
1327529312612The John Henry Newman CE (A) Primary School3564913.88122.8
1231399313210Church Cowley St. James Church of England Primary School467367.77115.2
1231409313211St. Andrew's Church of England Primary School2973812.85418.2
1231429313213New Hinksey Church of England Primary School912022.02224.2
1231439313216St. Michael's Church of England Primary School205146.84321.0
1231719313252St Christopher's Church of England School, Cowley3237623.58827.2
1231729313253St. Francis Church of England Primary School2954314.67023.7
1232129313833St. Ebbe's Church of England Aided First School270114.13412.6
1232139313834SS Mary and John Church of England Primary School329154.63510.6
1232159313836Our Lady's Catholic Primary School308134.23210.4
1232169313838St. Joseph's Catholic Primary School, Oxford30692.992.9
1232179313839St. John Fisher Catholic Primary School, Littlemore2073416.44823.2
1232429314074Peers School1,04920319.424323.2
1232529314117Oxford Community School1,11215513.932028.8
1232539314120Cheney School1,4291299.022615.8
1336449314145St. Gregory the Great VA Catholic Secondary School95010511.118519.5


(72) Includes middles schools as deemed.
(73) Includes dually registered and boarding pupils.
(74) Based upon school level numbers of pupils who had a free school meal on 20 January 2005.
(75) Less than 3 or a rate based on less than 3.
Source:
Annual Schools Census.





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