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Mr. Nicholas Brown:
To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what assessment she has made of (a) the key outcomes from the most recent Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development's Programme for International Student
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Assessment study and (b) the implications of the study for education policy in England; and if she will make a statement. 
Jacqui Smith: Because of our low participation rates in the Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA), it was the view of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), that the data for the United Kingdom from the 2003 study could not be reliably used. It would therefore be inappropriate to try to draw conclusions for education policy in England from the data.
The Government believe that international comparisons studies, such as PISA, offer unique and valuable insights into how the outcomes of our education system compare with those of other countries. That is why the Department for Education and Skills is putting its efforts into meeting the targets for school and pupil participation rates for the next PISA study which will take place later this year.
However, in assessing the outcomes of any such studies, we will keep in mind the conclusions of the Education and Skills Select Committee in its Fifth Report of Session 200405, published on 9 March 2005, that
the data supplied by international educational comparisons is both of interest and of use in the formulation of education policy. Nevertheless, individual studies always have their limitations and cannot alone form a sound basis on which to build the foundations of a publicly funded school system".
Mr. Nicholas Brown: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what her Department's participation was in the most recent Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development's Programme for International Student Assessment study; and when that participation commenced. 
Jacqui Smith: Ministers agreed to participate in the OECD's Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) on 2 August 2000. Since 1997 the Department has been involved in the overall development of PISA through its membership of the international PISA Governing Board.
As sponsor of the PISA study in England the Department appointed the Office for National Statistics (ONS) as data collection contractor for PISA 2003, after a tendering exercise. ONS collected data from a sample of schools chosen by the independent PISA Consortium which leads the study internationally. ONS supplied the resulting data directly to the Consortium. The Department published a Statistical First Release on 7 December 2004, detailing the status of the England and UK data.
Mr. Nicholas Brown: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what the response rate was for participation in the most recent Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development's Programme for International Student Assessment study; and which other OECD member countries achieved a similar response rate. 
|Weighted school participation rate after replacement (Percentage)|
|Final sampleafter school replacement||Final samplestudents within schools after school replacement|
Rosie Cooper: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how much funding her Department has allocated for IT equipment in schools in (a) West Lancashire and (b) England in each year between 1997 and 2005. 
Phil Hope: The Department does not hold information on funding for ICT at constituency level. However, West Lancashire is in Lancashire LA and allocations for this authority, since 1998, are detailed in 'Funding for ICT in Schools in England" which is available in the House Library. The document also includes total funding allocations for schools in England in each year.
Mr. Gauke: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what assessment she has made of changes in the productivity of teaching staff as a consequence of use of (a) virtual learning environments and (b) managed learning environments. 
The Department for Education and Skills has asked the British Educational Communications and Technology Agency (Becta) to undertake a study to assess the impact of both virtual
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learning environments and managed learning environments on the productive time of the front line workforce. This study will report in April 2006.
Kelvin Hopkins: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills pursuant to the answer of 16 January 2006, Official Report, column 1011W, on Level 2 Qualifications, how many EU member states have taken up the Level 2 entitlement since it was introduced. 
Phil Hope: The latest full year volumes available are for academic year 2004/05 in which the Level 2 Entitlement (L2E) pilot was operating in the North East and South East regions only. The number of learners from national EU member states benefiting from free tuition for a first full Level 2 qualification in the L2E pilot regions in 2004/05 was less than ten from a cohort of 2,795 learners.
Bill Rammell: The UK Government outlined its plans to achieve the Lisbon objectives in its national reform plan published in October 2005. This described how our national education and skills policies are contributing to the Lisbon objectives, in particular, through raising productivity and thereby contributing to economic growth.
Jacqui Smith: Local area agreements are voluntary, three year agreements between central Government and local authorities and their partners. 66 phase two agreements, starting in April 2006, are currently being finalised on the basis of guidance issued in June 2005. This guidance is being reviewed, and will be revised as necessary in respect of phase three agreements to be negotiated in 200607.
Mr. Kidney: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how many looked after children were placed out of area by local authorities in the latest year for which the data are available; and what proportion of the total this represents. 
Mr. Andy Reed:
To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what average number of hours per
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week of physical education was undertaken in (a) primary and (b) secondary schools in Loughborough constituency area in 200405. 
Jacqui Smith: The 200405 national school sport survey found that pupils in primary schools in the Burleigh school sport partnership in Loughborough spend an average of 95 minutes in a typical week on curriculum physical education (PE). The average time for pupils in secondary schools in the partnership is 111 minutes.
Mr. Hollobone: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills if she will take steps to ensure that facilities for physical education and sport at Southfield school, Kettering enable the school to make provision for all pupils to participate in two hours of high quality physical education and sport each week. 
Jacqui Smith: It is the responsibility of the schools and local authorities to determine how they allocate capital funds to different projects, including enhancing school sports facilities, taking account of local needs and priorities.
Over the last three years, we have allocated over £191 million to Northamptonshire and schools in its area, which includes Southfield school, of which £101 million relates to a PFI contract and over £4 million to a Targeted Capital Fund (TCP) Scheme. In the next two years, 200607 and 200708, we are allocating over £65 million to the local authority, including £12 million for TCP schemes. Officials have been informed that Northamptonshire county council is considering how the facilities at Southfield school might be improved.
The Government are investing £750 million in the New Opportunities for PE and Sport Programme across the United Kingdom over the period 200304 to 200708. £581 million was allocated to England, of which £25 million was passed to the Space for Sport and the Arts Programme and £30 million set aside for football projects within schools to be distributed via the Football Foundation. Of the £581 million allocated to England, £556 million has been committed to date and over £191 million spent.
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