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The number of Greater London schools in special measures has reduced from 26 on 1 September 2005 to the current figure of 20. The number of secondary schools in the category has reduced from seven to three during the same period.
Jim Knight: The Department collects information from each local authority (LA) on the number of school places maintained via an annual survey. The earliest data available are for 1998 and the most recent are for 2006. The number of school places was not collected in 2002 to allow for a change in the method of assessing school capacity.
Currently, the number of school places is calculated using the net capacity method of assessment which was introduced in 2003. Up to 2001 the capacity of a school was calculated using the MOE (More Open Enrolment) method. The following table shows the number of maintained secondary school places calculated by the net capacity method of assessment between 2003 and 2006 and the MOE method between 1998 and 2001.
|Secondary school places|
|Number of maintained places( 1)|
|(1) Number of places relate to position as at January.|
Surplus Places Survey
Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what his latest estimate is of the proportion of secondary school pupils in England who are taught in classes with (a) setting, (b) streaming and (c) no setting or streaming; and if he will make a statement. 
Your recent parliamentary question has been passed to me, as Her Majesty's Chief Inspector, for reply.
You asked for the latest estimate of the proportion of secondary school pupils in England who are taught in classes with (a) setting, (b) streaming, and (c) no setting or streaming.
Ofsted data on the use of streaming and setting are based on lessons observed during inspections. Since September 2005, under section 5 inspection arrangements, the recording of class organisation has been based either on discussions with the headteacher or teacher or by reference to the lesson plan at the time of observation. Whereas with section 10 arrangements all full-time teachers were observed by inspectors, under section 5 inspections this is not likely to be the case. Under section 5 inspections, a much smaller number of lessons is observed than would have been seen under the section 10 framework; and the lessons they see are not necessarily representative of the pupil grouping in the school as a whole. Retrieval from the lesson observation data would not therefore allow us to estimate what proportion of pupils nationally is taught in mixed ability or setted/streamed classes.
Lessons are recorded as being setted/streamed, mixed ability or otherwise organised. For clarity, setting is the term used to describe the organisation of pupils in classes on the basis of their prior attainment in the particular subject being taught. The term banding, which is very similar to streaming, is used when the decision as to which pupils are included or not in a class is based on the prior attainment in a range of subjects.
Although I am unable to answer the particular question you have raised, I have set out overleaf the data Ofsted has on the proportion of lessons observed in secondary schools during 2006/07 which were taught in setted/streamed and in mixed ability classes.
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.
Paul Holmes: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families pursuant to the answer of 26 July 2007, Official Report, column 1413W, on sixth form colleges, how many new sixth form colleges were (a) established, (b) closed and (c) merged with other institutions in each of the last 10 years; and what steps his Department is taking to promote the establishment of new sixth form colleges. 
Bolton Sixth Form College(1)
Brooke House Sixth Form College
Longley Park Sixth Form College
(1) Established as a result of merger involving North Bolton College & South College Bolton
South Park Sixth Form College
North Bolton College
South College, Bolton
York Sixth Form College
High Pavement Sixth Form College
Arnold and Carlton College
The Rutland College
Rowley Regis College
Shena Simon College
Park Sixth Form College
Haywards Heath College
North Area College
Josiah Mason Sixth Form College
Widnes and Runcorn Sixth Form College
Spelthorne Sixth Form College
Farnham Sixth Form College
We want to encourage a strong and growing Sixth Form College sector; Sixth Form Colleges generally are successful, high achieving and popular with students and parents. The White Paper Further Education: Raising Skills, Improving Life Chances (Cm 6768) includes our undertaking to expand the sector. New Sixth Form Colleges will be considered as one option where the Learning and Skills Council runs a competition for new 16-19 places. Following a competition in Rochdale, proposals for a new Sixth Form College are now being developed by the Rochdale Education Partnership working with the Learning and Skills Council. The FE presumption, under which high performing colleges are able to expand in order to deliver Diplomas, will provide capital grant for new provision at eligible Sixth Form Colleges.
Mr. Pickles: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families how many maintained special educational needs schools were operated in each local education authority in England in (a) 1996-97 and (b) the most recent year for which figures are available. 
Jim Knight: Data on the number of maintained special educational needs schools that were operated in each local education authority in England in 1996-97 and 2006-07, are shown in the following tables:
|Number of LA Maintained Special Schools, by Local Authority Area and Government Office Region in England( 1)|
|(1) Not all authorities can be directly compared as there has been some local government reorganisation between 1997 and 2007.|
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