Annette Brooke: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what guidance he has issued on the application of the provisions of the Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006 to chaperones of children involved in performances under (a) formal and (b) informal arrangements. 
Mr. Dhanda [holding answer 26 June 2007]: The Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006 which will be implemented from autumn 2008 provides the legislative framework to help prevent unsuitable people from working with children.
Child chaperones will be covered by the requirements of the Act if they are supervising, caring for or offering advice, guidance or instruction to the children and they do so frequently or intensively. This includes both paid employees and volunteers. The requirements of the Act do not extend to parents, so a parent chaperoning their own child taking part in a performance will not be affected by the new requirements.
Jim Knight: Where an academy sponsor makes the payment wholly and exclusively for the purposes of their trade and does not receive a capital asset in return, they are entitled to a deduction in their business profit and loss account. As academy schools are charities, any sponsorship payment that could not be claimed as an allowable expense would normally qualify for tax relief as a charitable donation. Payments made to academy schools by educational charities would be treated as charitable expenditure by the sponsoring charity.
To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how many GCSEs are a (a) GCSE short course, (b) GCSE double award, (c)
intermediate level GNVQ, (d) GCE AS-level, (e) GCE A-level, (g) BTEC, (h) NVQ, (i) level 2 basic skills certificate, (j) level 2 key skills certificate, (k) Cache Foundation Award in Caring for Children and (l) international GCSE considered to be equivalent for the purposes of GCSE performance tables. 
Jim Knight: A short course GCSE is equivalent to half a GCSE. A GCSE double award is equivalent to two GCSEs, an intermediate GNVQ equivalent to four GCSEs, an AS level to two GCSEs. A levels and international GCSEs are not included in the Key Stage 4 Achievement and Attainment Tables. Other qualifications can vary according to the subject. Complete information on the equivalence of all qualifications used in the Achievement and Attainment Tables is published by the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority in the National Database of Accredited Qualifications at
Jim Knight: We do not collect information about the number of children whose education is arranged by their parents and we have no plans to change this. A recent study on the prevalence of home education in England, conducted by York Consulting estimated that there were around 16,000 children being educated at home that were known to the local authority. We have not made any estimate of the number of home educated children that are not known to their local authority.
Mr. Prisk: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how many employers have participated in the development of the (a) Construction and Built Environment Diploma, (b) Engineering Diploma, (c) Creative and Media Diploma, (d) Land-based Environmental Diploma, (e) Business, Administration and Finance Administration Diploma, (f) Hospitality and Catering Diploma, (g) IT Diploma and (h) Manufacturing and Produce Design Diploma. 
Mr. Dhanda: Exact figures for each DDP are not readily available. Each DDP has consulted with around 1,000 employers, meaning that for the first phase, 5,000 employers have participated in the development process. The same process is being used for the development of the phase 2 Diplomas, and this will involve similar numbers.
Mr. Tom Harris: Provision of these services is a contractual requirement of the Southern franchise. They will continue. The Southern franchise is due to be re-let from December 2009. There will be a further opportunity for consultation at that time.
Mr. Tom Harris: The Secretary of State announced on 14 March 2007 that the high level output specification, to be published in the July, will include a commitment to a thousand extra carriages. They will be targeted at the most congested routes on the network.
Mr. Greg Knight: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport whether he plans to monitor the change in the number of fixed speed cameras resulting from the new guidance effective from 1 April. 
Dr. Ladyman: As from 1 April the deployment of safety cameras has been a local matter and the number of cameras will therefore be a local decision. The Department plans to monitor the general activities of the road safety partnerships but will not centrally hold the number of cameras.
Norman Baker: To ask the hon. Member for North Devon, representing the House of Commons Commission if the House of Commons Commission will adopt a policy of carbon neutrality; and if he will make a statement. 
Nick Harvey: The Parliamentary Estate Energy and Water Saving Policy is reviewed every two years and is next due for review later this year. The latest government sustainability targets which included the target, Central Governments office estate to be carbon neutral by 2012, were announced in June 2006 and will be considered when making the review.
Norman Baker: To ask the hon. Member for North Devon, representing the House of Commons Commission (1) what the total (a) volume and (b) value of flowers purchased by the House was in each year since 2001; 
(2) what (a) type and (b) country of origin of the flowers purchased by the House for use in (i) banqueting facilities and (ii) other areas of the Commons Parliamentary Estate was in the last calendar year for which figures are available. 
Nick Harvey: Some details of costs of flowers purchased are only readily available for the last four years following a change in the accounting system in 2003. No record is kept of volumes of flowers purchased by the House. The cost of flowers purchased for banqueting is recharged to the customer with the appropriate margin. The value of flowers purchased is in the following table.
|Banquetingcost of flowers for resale||Catering outlets||Public areas||Total other areas||Total cost of flowers purchased|
Nick Harvey: The programme of large maintenance projects in the Palace of Westminster indicates that Commons Court will be required for contractor accommodation for the foreseeable future. It is currently being used by contractors for the Press Gallery refurbishment project. Planned works include the roofs programme and mechanical and electrical service modernisation programme.
Malcolm Bruce: To ask the hon. Member for North Devon, representing the House of Commons Commission (1) whether there are any plans to replace the visitor stickers issued to visitors on the Parliamentary Estate with another form of temporary pass; 
(2) what steps are being taken to address the littering caused by discarded visitor stickers in and outside the immediate vicinities of the Parliamentary Estate; and if he will make a statement; 
Nick Harvey: The main step being taken to reduce the environmental impact of discarded visitor stickers is for them to be removed by the contract cleaners and receptacles are provided at exit points for the stickers.
Parliaments cleaning contractor has been instructed to remove all discarded stickers in the immediate vicinity of the Parliamentary Estate, including the Portcullis House colonnade. The company also cleans the area within and including the Corus barriers to the West of the Palace of Westminster. The contract manager has been reminded of the need for frequent cleaning.
A new access control system for the Parliamentary Estate will be introduced in the autumn. Part of this project is to introduce an improved Visitor Management System, which is currently in development. The intention is to provide a paper visitor pass clipped to the person instead of the stickers used at present.
Malcolm Bruce: To ask the hon. Member for North Devon, representing the House of Commons Commission how many visitor stickers were used on the Parliamentary Estate in each of the last 12 months. 
Nick Harvey: An estimate of the number of visitor stickers used on the Parliamentary Estate in each of the last 12 months based on number of visitors counted through search points is in the following table.
These figures are based on numbers provided by the Metropolitan Police using counting devices at search points. The counting device at Norman Porch is proving unreliable due to an ongoing technical fault, so Visitors Tour figures have been used instead. There may be a slight under-estimate due to Members or Peers guests using Norman Porch who will not be included in the Visitor Tour figures.
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