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Charles Hendry: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister how many websites there are within his responsibilities; and what the total cost of maintaining such websites was in 2005-06. [79146]

The Deputy Prime Minister: My new website is currently under development. Website information relating to my former departmental responsibilities has now transferred to the Department for Communities and Local Government, and I refer the hon. Member to that Department.

Leader of the House


Mr. Dismore: To ask the Leader of the House what assessment the Commission has made of the reliability of the new Dell printers issued to hon. Members. [78609]

Mr. Straw: As of 31 May 2006 1,069 Dell printers have been supplied to Members of the House. Between 1 June 2005 to 31 May 2006, 48 warranty calls have been made to Dell. This is equal to one call for every 22 printers.

By comparison during the period 1 August 2004 to 31 July 2005, 287 warranty calls were made relating to the 1,363 HP printers being used by Members. This is equal to one call for every 4.7 printers.

The majority of calls in both cases relate to the multifunction printers which are more complex and therefore more likely to develop a fault. Direct comparison of the warranty call ratios is not straightforward since the HP equipment in the sample is older than the Dell equipment and therefore would be expected to generate a higher number of warranty calls.

When equipment is first installed the overall number of calls received to the service desk does increase as issues with initial set-up and queries about the operation of the new equipment are handled. Accurate records as to the number of calls relating to this area are not available.

There is an issue associated with the new Dell printers relating to the operation of the second printer tray when working it in conjunction with certain applications. This is being investigated by both the supplier of the application and by Dell.

Education and Skills

Better Regulation Task Force

Annette Brooke: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills, pursuant to the answer of 19 December 2005, Official Report, column 2403W, on the Better Regulation Task Force, what progress he has made in considering whether and to what extent the Task Force’s other specific proposals can contribute to the key outcomes outlined in ‘Every Child Matters’. [78570]

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Mr. Dhanda [holding answer 19 June 2006]: The Task Force’s recommendation, that guidance should be given to local authorities that Directors of Children’s Services should have functions relating to child employment as part of their remit, is a helpful contribution to the ‘Every Child Matters’ agenda. I have not yet been persuaded that the Task Force’s legislative recommendations would make a significant contribution towards the five key outcomes for all our children described in ‘Every Child Matters’. The Government will continue to consider the recommendations, but will not take any measures that could compromise children’s entitlement to education, sufficient rest, or appropriate leisure time.

Fostered Teenagers (Support)

Mr. Laurence Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what support is provided for teenagers who leave long-term foster care placements; what extra support is provided for those with special needs; and if he will make a statement. [78965]

Mr. Dhanda [holding answer 20 June 2006]: Local authorities are placed under a duty, by section 22 of the Children Act 1989, to safeguard and promote the welfare of looked after children. The review of children’s cases procedure, derived from section 26 of the 1989 Act, places a duty on local authorities to have in place a plan for the future care of looked after children and to appoint an Independent Reviewing Officer (IRO) to conduct the periodic statutory reviews of their cases.

The Children (Leaving Care) Act 2000 is based on this care planning framework. As looked after children approach their 16th birthday, when they will become entitled to services as ‘care leavers’, their needs are required to be reassessed in order to inform the construction of their ‘pathway plan’ (which should be based on their existing care plan). This plan sets out the services that are necessary to respond to the young person’s needs, to prepare them for leaving care and then to support them after they have left care up until the age of 21, or longer, if they remain in an approved programme of education or training.

For young people with statements of special educational needs (SEN), including those who are looked after, there is a statutory transition planning process, which commences during Year 9 of their compulsory education. The purpose of this multi-professional process is to plan for young people’s transition to adult life.

Where a child who is the subject of a SEN statement is also a looked after child, then their responsible local authority should co-ordinate the respective planning processes, in order to integrate their transition plan with their pathway plan, so that young people are provided with the necessary support in an integrated way before, during and after leaving care.

School Inspectors

Sarah Teather: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what proportion of school inspectors in the Office of Standards in Education (Ofsted) worked in a school prior to joining Ofsted. [78275]

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Jim Knight: This is a matter for Ofsted. HM Chief Inspector, Maurice Smith, has written to the hon. Member and a copy of his reply has been placed in the House Library.

Letter from Maurice Smith, dated 21 June 2006:

Specialist Schools

Helen Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills pursuant to the answer to the hon. Member for Brent, East (Sarah Teather) of 4 May 2006, Official Report, column 1764W, on specialist schools, how many specialist schools are in areas within the worst 20 per cent. of wards in England according to the index of deprivation; and what specialism has been chosen by each such school. [79493]

Jim Knight: The information requested has been placed in the House Library.

St. Mark's Pre-school (Salisbury)

Robert Key: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills when Ofsted will publish the July 2005 inspection report on St. Mark’s Pre-School in Salisbury (Ofsted reference 146011) on its website; and if he will make a statement. [78125]

Beverley Hughes: This is a matter for the Office for Standards in Education (Ofsted). Maurice Smith, Her Majesty's Chief Inspector, has written to the hon. Member and a copy of his reply has been placed in the House Library.

Letter from Maurice Smith, dated 15 June 2006:

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Statemented Children

Mr. Frank Field: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what powers (a) academies and (b) other schools have to limit admittance of children with statements. [78075]

Mr. Dhanda [holding answer 16 June 2006]: Neither academies nor maintained schools have direct powers to limit admittance of children with statements of SEN. Academies admit more pupils with SEN (both with and without statements) than other secondary schools in England. The large majority of academies must have regard to the Special Educational Needs Code of Practice (2001) and any guidance issued by the Secretary of State relating to sections 316 and 316A of the Education Act 1996. Academy procedures for admitting children with statements of SEN track those for maintained schools. For example the large majority of academies must consent to being named in a statement of SEN unless to do so would be

This position tracks the requirement on maintained schools set out in sections 316/316A of the 1996 Education Act.

Where parents of children with a statement express a preference for a particular maintained school the local authority must consult the school concerned, and in the case of a school maintained by another authority that local authority as well. As part of the consultation process the authority should write to the school and other authority to ask them whether, in their opinion:

If the school or local authority opposes the naming of the parent’s preferred school on any of the grounds specified above, the “home” authority should consider very carefully their reasons for doing so, before deciding whether or not to name the school. The decision rests with the local authority and once a local authority names a particular maintained school in a child’s statement, that school must admit the child.

Sure Start

Joan Ruddock: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills (1) how many available places there are in Sure Start schemes in (a) Lewisham, Deptford constituency and (b) Lewisham borough; [79165]

(2) what percentage of children are on Sure Start schemes in (a) Lewisham, Deptford constituency and (b) Lewisham borough. [79166]

Beverley Hughes: Sure Start Local Programmes (SSLPs) were set up between 1999 and 2003 offering a range of services to children under four years of age and their families living in defined areas. All SSLPs are
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becoming Sure Start Children’s Centres and will offer services to children under five years of age and their families. Information about the percentage of children reached by SSLP services is now collected once a year. Data on how many children have accessed services through children’s centres are not available yet.

2,325 children under four live in areas covered by three SSLPs in the Lewisham Deptford constituency. In all 3,427 children under four live in areas covered by five SSLPs in the borough of Lewisham. The latest information available (at March 2005) shows on average 37 per cent.(1) of children in the Lewisham Deptford SSLPs and on average 36 per cent.(1) of children overall in SSLP areas in the borough of Lewisham had significant contact (that is, a home visit or attendance at a centre-based activity) with Sure Start.

There is one Sure Start Children’s Centre up and running in the constituency of Lewisham Deptford, building on an existing SSLP and offering services to 1,545 children under five and their families, and three overall in the borough of Lewisham offering services to 4,650(2) children under five and their families.

Tuition Fees (Peterborough)

Mr. Stewart Jackson: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how many students from (a) Peterborough constituency and (b) Peterborough city council area are exempt from tuition fees. [77914]

Bill Rammell: The number of students from Peterborough local authority making no contribution to their tuition fees in 2003/04 was 790(1). Data for 2004/05 onwards are not available as student applications from Peterborough were processed by another local authority (Cambridgeshire), and can not be disaggregated.

Students on full-time undergraduate courses and their families are expected to make a contribution towards the cost of their tuition based on household income. Students from lower income backgrounds are wholly or partially exempt from paying tuition fees.

From 2006/07 upfront fees are abolished and full-time students will be eligible for tuition fee loans of up to £3,000. In addition, we expect around 30 per cent. of students to receive the full maintenance grant of £2,700 and an HE institution bursary of at least £300. Overall, we expect around half of all eligible students to receive at least some maintenance grant.

Vocational Training

Anne Snelgrove: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what plans the Government have to improve vocational training for young people in Swindon. [79184]

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Phil Hope: The new Specialised Diplomas will provide an exciting, aspirational and stretching programme of learning for young people of all abilities and backgrounds, including the most able, who enjoy learning in a practical environment. A new statutory entitlement will be in place for all 14 to 19-year-olds from September 2013. Apprenticeships are the main programme for young employed people seeking vocational qualifications at Level 2 and Level 3. Other opportunities are also being developed, including a pilot programme that started in April this year aimed at encouraging 16 to 18-year-olds in jobs without training to gain a Level 2 qualification, whether academic or vocational. For those over 19 and without either basic skills or a first Level 2 qualification we have put in place the Train to Gain service to deliver high quality flexible qualifications in the workplace.

The local Learning Skills Council can provide details of any local initiatives that are available in the Swindon area.

Northern Ireland

Departmental Pensions

Mr. Rob Wilson: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland if he will estimate the pension liability of his Department over the next 30 years. [75233]

Paul Goggins: HM Treasury placed a technical note in the Library of the House on 2 March 2006, Official Report, columns 388-90, following an oral statement in Parliament by the then Chief Secretary to the Treasury.

Pension liabilities are not estimated for individual Departments, they are estimated for individual pension schemes, as shown in the breakdown of liabilities per pension scheme given in table 1 of the technical note.

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