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Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families (1) whether he has changed his policy on the promotion of parental choice in relation to schools; and if he will make a statement; 
Jim Knight: We encourage every parent to take an active and informed role in their child's education and choice and diversity is a key driver behind our overarching aim of raising standards. Our policy is to give parents and children a genuine choice between schools that provide a good standard of education and offer a unique ethos and curriculum, so that every child can find a school place in which they are happy and can flourish.
Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what funding his Department has allocated for a nationwide summer residential programme for school students in (a) 2007 and (b) 2008; and if he will make a statement. 
Jim Knight: The Department has provided no funding for a nationwide summer residential programme in 2007. However, the Department has worked with the Big Lottery Fund in delivering its Do it 4 Real summer residential programme since 2003. The Big Lottery Fund allocated £5 million for Do it 4 Real in 2007. From 2008-11, my Department will make a further £15 million available to expand residential activities, building on the success of Do it 4 Real.
Taking part in residential activity programmes, which take young people out of their immediate surroundings, can provide opportunities for young
people to mix with peers from different backgrounds, helping them to understand and appreciate cultural differences, and develop new interests, ambitions and aspirations. In expanding the availability of residential opportunities, building on the success of Do it 4 Real, the Government will focus on creating subsidised opportunities for young people, particularly those from disadvantaged backgrounds, to mix with a wide range of peers.
To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what plans he has to increase the
share of national income spent on education from 2005 levels over the period 2007 to 2011; and if he will make a statement. 
Kevin Brennan: The Government will increase spending in education as a proportion of GDP from 5.4 per cent. in 2005-06 to 5.6 per cent. in 2010-11. This compares to 4.7 per cent. of GDP spent on education in 1996-97. The exact figures for 2005-06 to 2010-11 are shown in the following table.
|UK Government education spend|
Following machinery of government changes, education spend on post-19 further education and skills and higher education is the responsibility of DIUS. My Department will continue to work closely with DIUS in relation to post-19 and higher education spending.
Mr. Stephen O'Brien: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families (1) what assessment he has made of whether all the incentives created by the 5 per cent. levy on school budget surpluses are in line with the objectives of that policy; and if he will make a statement; 
Jim Knight: The Government are taking action to reduce the total level of school balances which stood at £1.6 billion nationally at the end of the financial year 2005-06. We believe it right to ensure that some of this money is used to support the education of todays pupils. We propose therefore to require local authorities to redistribute locally 5 per cent. of all positive revenue balances which, on the basis of 2005-06 figures, would apply to around 20,500 or 90.4 per cent. of all schools. That will encourage these schools to think carefully about the level of their balances and to plan ahead for their use.
It will be for each local authority in consultation with its Schools Forum to decide how the redistribution will work in their area. Because the redistribution takes place within a local authority it will reward those schools who budget prudently for a small surplus at the end of each financial year, at the expense of those schools who maintain consistently high balances. As the resources will be redistributed there is no overall cost to the school system from this measure and we estimate that a 5 percent. annual redistribution would release around £75 million a year for wider use within schools.
Julia Goldsworthy: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what the average (a) duration and (b) cost of an Ofsted inspection of a (i) primary and (ii) secondary school was in the latest year for which figures are available; and if he will make a statement. 
Your recent parliamentary question has been passed to me, as Her Majestys Chief Inspector, for a response.
The cost of an inspection is derived from the published inspection tariff, which is closely related to the size of the school. Inspector days are allocated to a school according to the following formula:
|Number of pupils on roll||Inspector days in school|
No inspection involves inspectors being in a school for more than two days. Most inspections involve two days in school, except for very small schools. However the total cost of each inspection includes two extra days for the lead inspector to prepare and write up the inspection. Costs also include the administration of the inspection and quality assurance processes. As a result, the costs of inspection vary according to the size of the school. Some examples are:
A typical primary school of 241 pupils, with an inspection led by an additional inspector and the report quality assured by HMI, would be £6,018.
An inspection of a large primary school of 321 pupils, led by an HMI, would cost in the region of £8.704.
Most secondary school inspections are led by HMI. The cost of inspecting a small secondary school of 675 pupils would be £13,067; the cost of inspecting a large school of 1,465 pupils would be £15,645.
Higher Achieving Schools
Up to 30% of all schools are now considered for a reduced tariff inspection (RTI). These are schools which meet pre-defined criteria indicating that they are likely to be good or outstanding overall. In these inspections, one or two inspectors generally spend only one day in school though the inspections still require the two additional days for preparation and writing up of the report.
The tariff for each inspection is as follows:
|Inspector days in school|
An RTI inspection in a typical primary school with 259 pupils would cost approximately £3,376 including quality assurance by an HMI. Most of these inspections in primary schools cost between £3,300 and £3,800.
The majority of reduced tariff inspections in secondary schools cost between £4,000 and £5,000. These figures are based on costs in the current financial year 2007/08.
A copy of this reply has been sent to Jim Knight MP, Minister of State for Schools and Learners and will be placed in the Library of both Houses.
Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families how many schools have been placed in special measures since 1996; and how many of these have been in special measures for (a) less than one year, (b) more than one year, (c) more than two years, (d) more than three years, (e) more than four years, (f) more than five years and (g) more than six years. 
Your recent parliamentary question has been passed to me, as Her Majesty's Chief Inspector, for reply.
The numbers of schools placed in special measures from 1996-97 to 2005-06 are shown in the following table. The table also shows the length of time that schools made subject to special measures in each year remained in the category. The data are based on academic years.
|Number of schools( 1) placed in, and removed from, special measures between 1996-97and 2005-06( 2) , and those that closed while in this category|
|(1) This figure includes nursery schools primary schools, secondary schools, special schools and pupil referral units. Of the total number of schools in the table, 54 have been in special measures more than once. (2) Details of the number of schools placed in special measures in 2006-07 will be published by Ofsted on 28 September 2007.|
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