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2 Feb 2006 : Column 678W—continued

Exam Results

Mr. Gibb: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills pursuant to the answer of 15 December 2005, Official Report, column 2203W, on exam results, how many and what proportion of entrants to undergraduate courses leading to qualified teacher status attained (a) at least (i) 360, (ii) 300, (iii) 240, (iv) 180, (v) 120 and (b) fewer than 120 points at A level in each year since 2002–03. [40436]

Bill Rammell: The latest available information is given in the table.
'A' level points attainment for English domiciled entrants to English HE institutions who have one or more 'A' level qualifications on entry and who are aiming for the qualification of first degree with QTS(7)

2002/03
2003/04
2004/05
'A' level points attainedEntrantsPercentageEntrantsPercentageEntrantsPercentage
360+215521543005
300+670167701695017
240+1,600371,790372,19038
180+2,740643,040633,65564
120+3,628844,010834,74083
<120685168451796017
Total known4,3151004,8551005,700100


(7) Figures are for students identified as studying for first degree with QTS and who have either GCE 'A' level or VCE 'A' level qualifications. The average score given is the average tariff points score based upon all 'A' level qualifications (not just the best three).
Note:
Figures have been rounded to the nearest 5 and are on a snapshot basis as at 1 December.
Source:
Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) student record.


Fresh Start Programme

Mr. Gibb: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills if she will revise the eligibility criteria for the Fresh Start programme to include secondary schools that achieve less than a 25 per cent. rate of pupils gaining at least five A* to C GCSEs including English and mathematics. [47344]

Jacqui Smith: All applications for a school to join the Fresh Start programme are considered on their merits, having regard to the issues facing the school. In reaching decisions we look carefully at all the factors which make a school a cause for concern, including very low attainment and poor performance in the core curriculum.
 
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Mr. Gibb: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how many schools were reopened under the Fresh Start programme in each year since 1997. [47345]

Jacqui Smith: The information requested is set out in the following table. The first Fresh Start school opened in September 1998.
Academic yearNumber of Fresh Start schools opened
1998/993
1999/200013
2000/0110
2001/023
2002/034
2003/044
2004/059
2005/064

Further Education

Mr. Brady: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills if she will rank further education colleges in England by the correlation between funding per full-time equivalent student and all year qualification success rate. [45385]

Bill Rammell [holding answer 24 January 2006]: Qualification success rates for each college are available from the LSC website (http://benchmarkingdata.lsc. gov.uk/year8/index.cfm by downloading the file Institution level success rates: Excel file qualification aim data").

Funding data are also available for each college on the LSC website (http://www.lsc.gov.uk/National/Documents/SubjectListing/SectorData/CollegeAccounts/default.htm).

We do not benchmark colleges by full-time equivalent student numbers, but in the light of the Foster report we are considering the development of a value for money measure which will be used to benchmark college efficiency.

General Teaching Council

Mr. Gibb: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what the annual renewal fee for registration with the General Teaching Council was in each year since 2000. [48135]

Jacqui Smith: Teachers were required to pay an annual registration fee to the General Teaching Council for England for the first time in 2002–03. The fee was initially set at £23 and was increased to £28 in 2003–04 and to £30 in 2004–05. The fee level was retained at £30 in 2005–06.

Headship Qualifications

Mr. Gibb: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what steps she is taking to ensure reciprocal recognition of Welsh, Scottish and Northern Irish headship qualifications. [47241]

Jacqui Smith: Arrangements are already in place to ensure that holders of the Welsh NPQH, the Scottish Standard for Headship, and the PQH in Northern Ireland are considered to hold a qualification that is equivalent to NPQH.
 
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Following the introduction of the mandatory requirement in April 2004, applicants from the other home countries who want to apply for a first-time headship post in England need to present evidence that they hold or are working towards the qualifications that apply in their own countries.

Serving head teachers working in the other home countries who wish to apply for a headship post in England are exempt from the mandatory requirement in the same way that serving head teachers in England would be.

Identity Fraud

Mike Penning: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what training the Department has provided for (a) front desk and (b) administrative staff in relation to identity fraud. [41282]

Maria Eagle: The Department does provide training for front desk staff (receptionists and security guards) dealing with the public face to face. The induction training includes validating whether a person is who they say they are and whether they are allowed on site in their own right or whether they need to be escorted. After the induction, appointee must sign a declaration that they understand what they have been taught, that they know where the assignment instructions are kept should they need to refer to them and that they know who to contact for further guidance.

In respect of administration staff, dealing with verifying identity is part of the Department's work in administering vetting cases and, in HR, when recruiting new members of staff. The Department's Special Investigations Unit also provides fraud awareness training to divisions on request.

Independent Committee on Examination Standards

Mr. Gibb: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills (1) pursuant to the answer of 9 January 2006, Official Report, column 426W, on the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority, when the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority will be in a position to reconstitute the Independent Committee on Examination Standards; [46530]

(2) what plans she has to abolish the Independent Committee on Examination Standards. [46899]

Jacqui Smith: The Qualifications and Curriculum Authority (QCA) intends to have the reconstituted Independent Committee on Examination Standards in place to begin a new programme of work by the autumn. The management of the Independent Committee on Examination Standards is the responsibility of the QCA, as regulator for examination standards in England.

Inter-ministerial Meetings (Scottish Executive)

Mr. Weir: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how many inter-ministerial meetings her Department has held with the Scottish Executive since May 1999; and what the (a) Scottish Executive Department concerned, (b) subject and (c) date was in each case. [39804]


 
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Maria Eagle: Ministers have regular dialogues with Ministerial colleagues in the Scottish Executive, discussing a wide range of issues of mutual interest. It is not our practice to disclose details of such meetings.

Local Education Authorities (Structure)

Andrew Selous: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills which local education authorities have (a) moved from two tier to three tier, (b) moved
 
2 Feb 2006 : Column 682W
 
from three tier to two tier, (c) reviewed their three tier structure and decided to keep it (i) entirely and (ii) in part, (d) reviewed their two tier structure and decided to keep it (i) entirely and (ii) in part and (e) operate a mixed two tier and three tier structure. [48241]

Jacqui Smith: As at January 2005 there were 24 local authorities (LA) in England that had a total of 367 middle schools, 235 of which were for children aged 9 to 13. The table lists the 24 local authorities and details of numbers of schools for each.
Maintained primary, middle and secondary schools: number of schoolsJanuary 2005: local authorities with middle schools

Maintained primary, middle and secondary schools
Number of primary and secondary schoolsNumber of middle schools(8)of which: middle schools 9–13(8)Total number of schools
820Bedfordshire1634040203
873Cambridgeshire23211233
835Dorset1581616174
310Harrow4719066
919Hertfordshire49266498
921Isle of Wight51161667
886Kent57533578
382Kirklees17775184
855Leicestershire270100280
826Milton Keynes8217099
391Newcastle upon Tyne836489
926Norfolk388490437
392North Tyneside674471
815North Yorkshire37420376
928Northamptonshire31022312
929Northumberland1564444200
836Poole299138
933Somerset25499263
860Staffordshire3631414377
935Suffolk2924040332
938West Sussex268140282
865Wiltshire24532248
868Windsor and Maidenhead554459
885Worcestershire2173224249


(8) School types derived from returns made by schools to the Department in the Annual Schools' Census. (Information is not yet available from January 2006 Annual Schools Census)
Source:
Annual Schools' Census


We are not routinely informed of LAs' plans for reorganisation until they decide to proceed and publish statutory notice but we do know that a number of LAs are looking at their middle school systems in the context of falling rolls and surplus places.

The following LAs have obtained approval for reorganisation schemes to remove some of their middle schools for implementation from 2005 onwards:

We have no information to suggest that any LAs are considering moving from a two tier to three tier structure. We do not routinely collect information about reviews of education provision conducted by LAs in relation to two and three tier structures.

The organisation of school provision is a local matter. LAs have overall responsibility for ensuring that there are sufficient schools to meet local needs and final decisions on proposals to change the pattern of provision would normally be made by the local School Organisation Committee (SOC) or schools adjudicator.


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