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|Children looked after who were reported missing in the year ending 31 March 2006( 1,2) England|
(2) To maintain the confidentiality of each individual child, data at national level are rounded to the nearest 100 if they exceed 1,000 to the nearest 10 otherwise.
Due to rounding percentages do not add up to 100.
Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what steps have been taken to improve music programmes within secondary schools in 2006-07; and what funding has been allocated to that purpose for (a) 2006-07 and (b) 2007-08. 
Jim Knight: In 2006-07 support has been given to two projects which help secondary teachers to focus on engaging pupils in their musical learning and so raise standards. These projects are the Secondary Strategys Key Stage 3 music professional development programme, which received £255,000 of funding support, and the Paul Hamlyn Foundations Musical Futures project, which received £145,000 of support.
At the request of Government, the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority is carrying out a review of the secondary curriculum to reduce prescription, improve coherence and create further opportunities for schools to meet the needs of all their pupils. This will build on the increased engagement created by the above projects. A formal consultation on the new secondary curriculum will begin on 5 February 2007. Revised programmes of study will be available to schools for planning purposes in September 2007, with implementation beginning in September 2008.
In total we have invested over £500 million in music education between 1999 and 2008 and £95 million will be invested in 2007-08 alone, which includes £10 million primarily to boost school singing. The focus of this funding has been on improving access to instrumental and vocal tuition for primary school pupils, which evidence shows to be the time to make the greatest impact on musical take-up. In the future secondary school pupils will have benefited from the £10 million investment in primary schools announced earlier this month.
Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what percentage of (a) primary and (b) secondary school students in England are being educated outside the state education system. 
|Independent schools( 1) : Number and percentage of pupils( 2) as at January 2006England|
|Number (headcount) of pupils|
|Pupils aged( 3)||All schools||Independent schools||Percentage of pupils in independent schools( 4)|
|(1) Excludes direct grant nursery schools, city technology colleges and academies|
(2) Excludes dually registered pupils.
(3) Age as at 31 August 2005.
(4) The number of pupils in independent schools expressed as a percentage of pupils across all schools.
Pupil numbers have been rounded to the nearest 10.
Jim Knight: In the last five years the Secretary of State has approved four applications that involve the disposal of either a playground or part of a playground at schools in Essex. The details are as follows:
(i) An application was approved in October 2003 to dispose of the playground at the former Park School, Rayleigh which had closed.
(ii) In April 2004, an application was approved to dispose of the playground at Harwich Primary School, Harwich. The school had moved to a new site where a new playground of at least equal size replaced that on the old site.
(iii) In April 2004, an application was approved to dispose of the playground at Little Parndon Infant School, Harlow. The separate infant and junior schools had closed and amalgamated to form one new primary, making the former infant school site redundant.
(iv) An application to dispose of the playground at the former Thomas Tallis Infant School in Waltham Abbey that had closed was approved in June 2004.
Mr. Willetts: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how many children were in (a) school action, (b) early years action, (c) school action plus and (d) early years action plus in each local education authority in each year since the schemes inception. 
Information broken down by school action, early years action, school action plus and early years action plus is not available for all school types for all years requested. Where this breakdown is not available, the total number of pupils with Special Educational Needs (SEN) without a statement has been provided.
Mr. Willetts: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how many children with statements were educated by each local authority at a special school outside the childs local authority area, in each year since 1997. 
Mr. Dhanda [holding answer 22 January 2007]: A table showing the number and percentage of children with statements of Special Educational Needs who were educated at a special school outside the childs local authority area by each local authority for the years 2002 to 2006 has been placed in the Library.
Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what factors were taken into account when setting the maximum non-means-tested potential borrowing for a student living away from home and outside London for 2006-07. 
Bill Rammell: As in previous years 75 per cent. of the maintenance loan is non-means-tested. The maximum loan rates were set to match the median basic expenditure by students based on the 2002/03 Student Income and Expenditure Survey.
Mr. Hayes: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what finances are targeted in 2006-07 to support the underachieving groups of (a) selected ethnic minorities, (b) white working-class boys and (c) looked-after children identified on page 29 of his Departments annual report. 
(a) The Ethnic Minority Achievement Grant (EMAG), an element of the Standards Fund, provides additional support to raise the educational achievement of minority ethnic pupils and to meet the particular needs of pupils whose first language is other than English. In 2006-07 the Department allocated £173.6 million EMAG funding to local authorities.
(b) The Department does not explicitly fund white working class boys and looked-after children through the Dedicated School Grant (DSG). However, the Department has estimated that 10.5 per cent. of the £27 billion DSG paid to local authorities in (2006-07) was targeted on deprivation; within that it was estimated that 1.8 per cent. was specifically targeted at black and minority groups with the remaining 8.6 per cent. on general deprivation.
The Department has also allocated significant funding to support personalised learning within schools core budgets. In 2007-08 this amounts to £565 million through the Dedicated Schools Grant and £365 million through the School Standards Grant (Personalisation). Schools are encouraged to use this funding to support intervention and catch-up provision for children who have fallen behind in English and Maths; to support the education of gifted and talented learners; and to help learners from deprived backgrounds to access after-school and year-round activities.
(c) DfES made available a total of £152 million of targeted funding for childrens services in 2006-07 through the Childrens Services Grant, which includes funding for services for looked after children. The recent green paper Care Matters set out the Governments wide ranging proposals for transforming educational and other outcomes for looked after children.
Mr. Heald: To ask the hon. Member for Gosport, representing the Speakers Committee on the Electoral Commission, what research the Electoral Commission has undertaken on the amount of expenditure by political party accounting units with expenditure below £25,000 a year. 
Peter Viggers: The Electoral Commission informs me that it has conducted no specific research on this issue. However, as part of its regulatory oversight of party finances, the Commission periodically requests details from all political party accounting units of their income and expenditure to enable it to check that every unit required by law to submit its accounts to the Commission is doing so. The Commission also, for the same purpose, regularly cross-checks information about donations accepted by accounting units against records of accounts submitted.
James Purnell: Our first priority on taking office was dealing with the situation we inherited of pensioners already living in poverty. Since 1997 1 million pensioners have been lifted out of relative poverty thanks to measures like pension credit.
The White Paper "Security in Retirement: Towards a New Pensions System" announced our commitment to securing these gains into the future by uprating both the basic state pension and the standard minimum guarantee in pension credit in line with earnings over the long-term.
Jim Cousins: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many households received pension credit in the City of Newcastle upon Tyne in each year in (a) May 2005 and (b) May 2006; and what the annual pension credit expenditure was in each ward in each year. 
|Household recipients of pension credit and the cost of pension credit expenditure for wards in Newcastle upon Tyne local authority, May 2005 and May 2006|
|Ward name||Number of household recipients, 2005||Annual pension credit expenditure 2004-05 (£ million, nominal terms)||Number of household recipients, 2006||Annual pension credit expenditure 2005-06 (£ million, nominal terms)|
1. Expenditure figures are consistent with the pre-Budget report 2006 and are rounded to the nearest £100,000.
2. The number of households in receipt are rounded to a multiple of five.
3. As a result of 1. and 2., ward totals may not sum to area totals.
4. Case loads and average weekly amounts for May 2005 and May 2006 have been used to calculate the annual expenditure figures for each ward in Newcastle local authority.
5. Household recipients are those people who claim pension credit either for themselves only or on behalf of a household.
6. Wards are based on 2003 ward boundaries.
DWP Work and Pensions Longitudinal Study 100 per cent. data.
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