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13 Sep 2006 : Column 2380W—continued

    Care & related proceedings (Public law)

    Until the youngest child reaches 21 years.

    Adoption

    Until the youngest child in proceedings reaches 75 years.

    Private law cases

    Between 5-7 years following the end of proceedings.


Funding

Helen Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how much funding (a) in total and (b) per pupil has been allocated to Warrington Education Authority in each year since 1997. [91053]

Phil Hope: The following table sets out the total funding received by Warrington local education authority for its pupils for the years 1997-98 to 2005-06:


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Warrington local education authority
Total funding (£ million) Funding per pupil (£)

1997-98

83.7

2,660

1998-99

88.1

2,710

1999-2000

91.4

2,810

2000-01

100.2

3,020

2001-02

105.2

3,150

2002-03

108.0

3,240

2003-04

112.1

3,340

2004-05

114.9

3,460

2005-06

120.0

3,650

Change(1)

36.4

980

(1 )Change since 1997-98. Notes: 1. Price Base: real terms at 2004-05 prices, based on GDP deflators as at 23.12.05. 2. Figures reflect relevant sub-blocks of standard spending assessment/education formula spending (EFS) settlements and exclude the pensions transfer to EFS and LSC. 3. Total funding also includes all revenue grants in DfES departmental expenditure limits relevant to pupils aged 3-19 and exclude education maintenance allowance (EMAs) and grants not allocated at LEA level. 4. The pupil numbers used to convert £m to £ per pupil are those underlying the SSA/EFS settlement calculations plus PLASC 3-year-old maintained pupils and estimated 3 to 4-year-olds funded through state supporting maintained and other educational institutions where these are not included in the SSA pupil numbers. 5. Rounding: total funding is rounded to the nearest £0.1 million. Per pupil figures are rounded to the nearest £10. Figures may not total due to rounding. 6. Status: 2003-04 to 2005-06 figures are provisional as some grants have not yet been finalised/audited.
7. 1997-98 figures for authorities subject to local government re-organisation in that year (such as Warrington) have been estimated, pro-rata to their post LGR figures.

The following figures are taken from the new dedicated schools grant. They are not comparable with those for the earlier years:

Total DSG (£ million) Guaranteed unit of funding (£)

2005-06 Baseline

100.108

3,205.76

2006-07 DSG

105.260

3,414.00

Notes: 1. The figures from 1997-98 to 2005-06 are based on education formula spending (EPS) which formed the education part of the local government finance settlement, plus various grants. This was an assessment of what local authorities needed to fund education rather than what they spent. In 2006-07 funding for schools changed with the introduction of the dedicated schools grant (DSG) which is based largely on an authority's previous spending. 2. The DSG has a different coverage to EFS. EFS comprised a schools block and an LEA block (to cover LEA central functions) whereas DSG only covers the schools block. LEA block items are still funded through DCLG's local government finance settlement but education items cannot be separately identified. This means there is a break from 2006-07 onwards in the funding series and the two sets of figures are not comparable. A new funding series is currently being developed by the Department. 3. There are other grants that support the schools budget. These are not included in the provided DSG figures as some of these grant figures are not yet available. 4. Figures are in cash terms and include the pensions transfer.

Helen Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills (1) which schools in Warrington North have received funding for capital projects in each year since 1997; and how much was allocated and for what purpose in each case; [91054]

(2) how much capital funding has been allocated to Warrington Education Authority in each year since 1997. [91055]

Phil Hope: School capital allocations are made by the Department on a local authority basis. These, together with any other local resources, are prioritised
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between schools in accordance with local authority asset management plans. The Department does not keep records of allocations to individual schools.

Capital funding allocated to Warrington borough council and schools in its area in each year since 1998, the first year in which central records are available, is set out in the following table, in £ million.

£ million

1998-99

3.7

1999-2000

4.7

2001-01

8.7

2001-02

9.0

2002-03

10.0

2003-04

8.8

2004-05

8.0

2005-06

9.8

2006-07

11.6


Further Education

Mr. Truswell: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what assessment he has made of the impact of the targeting of further education funding according to Priorities for Success on the level of provision of courses in (a) Leeds and (b) England for (i) people with learning disabilities and (ii) other priority groups; and if he will make statement. [90924]

Phil Hope: Funding for provision for people with learning difficulties and/or disabilities has increased significantly over recent years, and in 2004/05 the Learning and Skills Council (LSC) supported more than 641,000 learners with learning difficulties and/or disabilities which accounted for nearly £1.5 billion. Continued investment in this provision remains a priority. This was stated in the Department's Grant Letter to the LSC for 2006-07, and was built upon by the LSC in their Annual Statement of Priorities for 2006/07.

The LSC's funding strategy set out in Priorities for Success, realigns funding to support the Government targets, apprenticeships, Train to Gain, and free first full level 2 while protecting support for disadvantaged adult learning and securing more resource for those with learning difficulties and disabilities. Priorities for Success makes clear that support for disadvantaged adults who lack basic and level 2 skills for employability and progression to Level 3 is a priority, with free tuition for learners studying basic skills, a first level 2, and for all those on income-related benefits

Mr. Marsden: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills (1) what proportion of the total budget for further education was spent on adult students with learning disabilities in each (a) institution and (b) region in each of the last five years; [90985]

(2) how much funding was provided for further education for adult students with learning disabilities in each (a) institution and (b) region in each of the last five years. [90986]


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Phil Hope: The Learning and Skills Council allocates specific budgets to institutions or regions for adult learners with learning difficulties and/or disabilities, therefore we do not hold the detail of institutional funding. Funding for provision for people with learning difficulties and/or disabilities has increased significantly over recent years, and in 2004/05 the Learning and Skills Council (LSC) supported more than 641,000 learners with learning difficulties and/or disabilities, which accounted for nearly £1.5 billion.

Continuing investment in this provision remains a priority, which was confirmed in our 2006-07 Grant Letter to the LSC, and the LSC has in turn made clear in its strategic planning guidance the priority it attaches to this provision. Information on individual institutions can be found at the institution's website and performance information on Ofsted's website (www.ofsted.gov.uk)

Law Students

Mr. Marsden: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what publicly-funded assistance is available to mature students to study law and subsequently train as lawyers. [90610]

Phil Hope: Mature students are generally able to receive support to study law degrees on the same basis as younger students and on the same basis as for other degree courses. For full-time students, new rates of student support in 2006/07 offer above—inflation increases in the amount of maintenance loan available to students (up to £6,170 in London). These maintenance loans are available to students under the age of 60. New fee loans of up to £3,000 ensure that no eligible student pays upfront fees. Student loans for maintenance and tuition fees incur no real rate of interest, are repaid only when graduate earnings are £15,000 or more and are written off after 25 years.

A means tested HE maintenance grant of up to £2,700 has been introduced for new students, who will also receive institutional bursaries of at least £300 if they pay fees of £3,000 at a publicly-funded institution. Students with dependants can claim additional grants including adult dependants grant (worth up to £2,455), parents learning allowance (worth up to £1,400) and a child care grant (worth up to £8,840). In addition, student parents are eligible to receive child tax credit from the Inland Revenue. Some students are also eligible for university access to learning funds and disabled students allowances. Mature law students who do not qualify for undergraduate support may be eligible for a career development loan which has an element of subsidy from public funds.

Part-time mature students receive the same support as other part-time students. In 2006/07 a fee grant of up to £1,125 is available, depending how intensive the course is, together with a course grant of up to £250.

Mature students can apply for the training contract grant scheme (TCGS) which is administered by the Legal Services Commission. The TCGS provides financial support to law students wishing to work in the legal aid sector.

The information given is in relation to England.


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London Olympics (Building Skills)

Derek Wyatt: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what courses are available for citizens in east London to upgrade their skills so that they can apply for employment on the London Olympics site. [90722]

Phil Hope [holding answer 11 September]: In preparation for the Olympics, Construction Skills—the Sector Skills Council, have set up a team “Constructing London 2012” to identify the skills needed to deliver the Games. They are working closely with the Learning and Skills Council to identify training requirements for the site and Mark Haysom, the LSC Chief Executive, will write to you with further details. In addition, we are completing the national roll-out of the Train to Gain to service to help equip employees to upgrade their skills.

Letter from Mark Haysom:

Post-graduate Debt

Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what steps are being taken to reduce the level of post-graduate debt. [88805]


13 Sep 2006 : Column 2385W

Bill Rammell: Higher education is the best investment most people will make, with a substantial graduate premium compared with what a similar individual would have earned if they just had A-levels. There is now more money available to students from the student finance system and, where this is in the form of student loans, the debt incurred is quite unlike commercial debt. Students repay student loans after they have left university or college and only in real terms the same amount that they originally borrowed. Graduates do not pay back until they are in work and earning more than £15,000. Someone on the average graduate starting salary of £18,000 could be paying only £5.19 per week. If at any time their income drops below £15,000 the repayments will stop until they are earning more again. We have also provided that, if after 25 years students starting in 2006/07 or later have still not paid back all their student loan, the Government will pay it off for them.

There are also new grants which should benefit up to half of new entrants to full time courses. From 2006/07 lower income students are eligible for maintenance grants of up to £2,700 and minimum university bursaries of £300, typically £1,000, which gives them the option to reduce potential loan debt substantially.


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