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12 Dec 2006 : Column 1015Wcontinued
Mr. Waterson: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how many pupils received free fruit in Eastbourne constituency in each year since 1996. 
Caroline Flint: I have been asked to reply.
The school fruit and vegetable scheme (SFVS) did not start in the south east region until late 2004. We break down information by local authorities rather than constituencies. East Sussex commenced the SFVS on 12 October 2004 and there are 15,718 pupils receiving fruit in this authority. This number has remained fairly constant since the scheme began, and will vary each school year depending on intake.
Sarah Teather: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how much funding his Department provided for the running of Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender history month in (a) 2005 and (b) 2006; and how much it plans to give towards the February 2007 event. 
Jim Knight [holding answer 27 November 2006]: The Department provided pump priming support for this event in its first two years, £17,000 in 2005 and £20,000 in 2006, in recognition of the organisers' valuable work in promoting diversity and identifying and combating homophobia in schools. However, the event is now well established and has secured other sources of funding, and we therefore do not plan to provide financial support for it in 2007 or in subsequent years.
The Department continues to support the aims of Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgender history month and, in both 2005 and 2006, it held events for its own staff to support the history month as a part of its general
activity to deliver its equality and diversity agenda as an employer. Similar activity is planned for 2007.
Mr. Drew: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how many students from Stroud constituency (a) were allocated university courses and (b) received student loans to attend university courses in each year since 1996-97. 
Bill Rammell: Available data for Stroud parliamentary constituency for academic years 1996-97 to 2005-06 are given in the table.
|Academic year||Number of students( 1)||Students eligible for an income-contingent loan( 2)|
|(1) Figures are for students domiciled in the Stroud parliamentary constituency. They are on a snapshot basis as at 1 December and are rounded to the nearest five. Figures cover total student numbers on full-time and part-time undergraduate courses, excluding students on writing up, sabbatical and dormant modes of study.|
(2) Figures are for students domiciled in the Stroud parliamentary constituency and numbers have been rounded to the nearest five.
Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA) for student numbers and Student Loans Company (SLC) for students eligible for a loan.
Data specifically on students from Stroud receiving a loan are not available, therefore numbers of applicants eligible for a loan have been provided. Numbers of students in receipt of a loan will be slightly lower than those applicants eligible for a loan.
Constituency level data on student loans are only available since the introduction of the Student Loans Company's protocol system in 2004-05.
Figures for student numbers for 2005-06 will be available in January 2007.
Sarah Teather: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how many and what proportion of (a) 16 to 18, (b) 17 and (c) 18-year-olds are not in education, employment or training in each region. 
The Department's estimate of the number and proportion of young people not in education, employment or training (NEET) cannot be disaggregated to regional level. However, we can give an indication of the number and proportion of 16 to 18-year-olds NEET from data provided by Connexions services, and this is given in the following table:
|Young people not in education, employment of trainingNovember 2005|
|Age16 to 18||Age 17||Age18|
It should be noted that the NEET figures in the table are calculated on a different basis from that used in the Department's estimates, and therefore do not lead to the same totals.
Dr. Pugh: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what assessment he has made of (a) the major health reasons for short absences from work and (b) the extent to which gastric complaints cause such absences. 
Mrs. McGuire: The Department for Work and Pensions records the reasons for sickness absence in its workforce using the World Health Organization's sickness definitions, and is able to report on the number, causes and duration of absences. Gastric complaints are recorded under the category "Diseases of the Digestive System".
During the 12 months up to 31 October, 2006, the Department recorded 13,350 spells of short-term absence caused by digestive diseases. This accounted for 7.7 per cent. of all spells of short-term absence. A short-term absence is one that does not exceed seven consecutive working days.
Mr. Jenkins: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many households in Tamworth constituency are in receipt of council tax benefit; and how many of those recipients are (a) pensioner and (b) non-pensioner households. 
Mr. Plaskitt: The information is not available below local authority area.
Keith Vaz: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how much was paid in bonuses to civil servants in his Department each year since 2001-02; and how many civil servants received bonuses in each year. 
Mrs. McGuire: The answer is in the following table.
DWP was formed in 2002 and information for performance bonuses is only available for the Department from this date.
Performance bonus payments are awarded to employees on the basis of their individual performance. They are paid after the completion of the performance year. The expenditure incurred is as follows:
|Table 1: Amount paid in performance bonuses to DWP staff since 2002 and the numbers of staff receiving bonuses|
|Financial year||Total paid (£ million)||Number of employees receiving bonus|
In addition to individual performance bonus payments, DWP also paid team bonuses to selected units within the Department. The expenditure incurred is as follows:
|Amount paid in team bonuses to DWP staff since 2002 and the numbers of staff receiving bonuses|
|Total paid (£ million)||Total number receiving bonus|
|(1) Not applicable. Notes: 1. The information in Table 1 is based on the numbers of staff recorded on the DWP payroll systems as having received a qualifying performance mark. These are a headcount. 2. The performance bonus is paid in the financial year following the performance year of 1 April to 31 March. 3. Some individuals may have received more than one type of bonus payment in any given year, which is why the information has been presented separately, and not as an aggregated total. 4. The numbers of employees receiving a team bonus are approximations. No team bonus schemes have run since 2004-05.|
Individuals may also be entitled to special bonus payments. The cost in a typical year for these bonuses is around £3 million with payments made to approximately 17,000 individuals (based on 2005-06 payments).
John Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what recent assessment he has made of the level of child poverty in Great Britain. 
Mr. Jim Murphy: In 2004-05 (the latest data available), 2.4 million children were living in relative poverty in Great Britain (before housing costs). This represents a fall of 700,000 since 1997.
As a result of our reforms to the tax and benefit system since 1997, by October 2006, in real terms, families with children will be on average £1,500 a year better off, while those in the poorest fifth will be on average £3,400 a year better off.
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