|Previous Section||Index||Home Page|
Education is a top priority for the Government and has been backed with substantial increases in school funding, from which all local authority areas have benefited. Between 1997-98 and
2005-06, total revenue funding for pupils aged three to 19 in Shropshire went up by £1,090 per pupil in real terms, an increase of 38 per cent.
The Government must ensure an equitable distribution between authorities of the total available nationally for schools each year; this means that the funding each area receives reflects the needs of that area. Some areas, particularly inner city areas, receive additional funding because it costs more to recruit and retain teachers and other members of staff in these areas. Others receive additional funding as they are sparsely populated, with many small, rural primary schools that are more expensive to run.
The main reason for differences in funding levels is the emphasis placed on targeting funding to disadvantaged pupils who are likely to need extra support if they are to have an equal chance to succeed. This year 7.2 per cent. of Shropshires funding is for additional educational needs including deprivation compared with 12.0 per cent. nationally. That is reflected in the level of school funding the authority receives.
The school funding settlement for 2006-08 gave Shropshire an increase in its DSG of 6.6 per cent. per pupil in 2006-07 (compared with its spending in 2005-06) and a further increase of 6.4 per cent. per pupil in 2007-08. This gave Shropshire guaranteed funding per pupil of £3,339 in 2006-07 and £3,551 this year.
Schools themselves were guaranteed minimum increases in their per pupil funding for both years. The guarantee for 2006-07 was an increase of 4 per cent. per pupil for nursery and primary schools (recognising the full year cost of implementing workforce reform in these schools), and 3.4 per cent. for secondary and special schools. For 2007-08, the guaranteed minimum increase is 3.7 per cent. per pupil for all schools.
Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what the evidential basis is for his statement on 10 July 2007 that specialist schools are driving up standards across the country. 
A Study of the Specialist Schools Programme, Institute of Education, university of Warwick, 2004
Evaluating the Effectiveness of Specialist Schools1 Levacic and Jenkins, Centre for Economics of Education, London School of Economics (2004).
Specialist SchoolsWhat do we know?, Frances Castle and Jennifer Evans, Research and Information on State Education, (RISE) 2006
The Impact of the Specialist Schools Programme on exam results, Jim Taylor, Working Paper 2007/007, Lancaster university management school, London School of Economics, 2007
Specialist Schools: An Evaluation of Progress and Specialist Schools: a second evaluation 2001 and 2005
Being a specialist school makes a difference. Working to declared targets, dynamic leadership by key players, a renewed sense of purpose, the willingness to be a pathfinder, targeted used of funding and being part of an optimistic network of like-minded schools all contribute to an impetus and climate for improvement.
Mrs. Maria Miller: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what targets and indicators for Sure Start are contained in the Comprehensive Spending Review (CSR) (a) 2004 and (b) 2007; what steps he plans to take in respect of these targets following recent performance against them; what progress he expects to be achieved by the end of the CSR 2004 reporting period; and if he will make a statement. 
To improve childrens communication, social and emotional development so that by 2008 53 per cent. of children reach a good level of development at the end of the Foundation Stage and reduce inequalities between the level of development achieved by children in the 30 per cent. most disadvantaged areas and the rest of England from 16 per cent. to 12 per cent. A good level of development was defined for this measure as achieving six points in each of the Personal, Social and Emotional Development and Communication Language and Literacy Scales.
During 2005 and 2006, the major focus was on improving the accuracy and consistency of the assessments against the FSP being undertaken in every local authority, through a programme of rigorous moderation assessments against the Foundation Stage Profile. It is encouraging that we are starting to see results move in the right direction after these improvements with a small increase in 2007 from 44 per cent. to 45 per cent. of children achieving a good level of development.
The gap between the most disadvantaged areas and the rest remained around 17 per cent. However this shows that the performance of the most disadvantaged groups has kept pace with improvements for the rest. We know that it will take time for our policies and programmes to have full impact but believe that investing for the long term is essential if we are to improve the life chances of the most disadvantaged children.
The Government are committed to investing in early educationwe have invested over £21 billion in the early years, and will spend an additional £4 billion in the next spending period to give all children the best start in life and to narrow the gap between the most disadvantaged and the rest. That is why we have established over 1,500 Sure Start Childrens Centres in the most disadvantaged areas in the country, and are committed to having one in every community by 2010.
We have also provided guidance to childrens centres on how they can reach out to their most vulnerable and disadvantaged children.
This target has already been met. A stock of 1.21 million registered child care places was necessary to meet the target of 10 per cent growth above the March 2004 baseline. In June 2007, there was a stock of 1.28 million registered child care places, which represented an increase of 17 per cent. from March 2004.
The target has been met but work is required to ensure that a sufficient level of stock is maintained. The main focus now is on sustainability of child care, and improving quality, accessibility and affordability, rather than the creation of additional places. The new duty on local authorities to complete assessments of the sufficiency of child care by March 2008 will help them identify unmet need, in advance of their duty to secure sufficient child care for working parents which comes into force the following month.
We are currently unable to assess performance as the necessary data will not be available until next year. However, we are working closely with delivery partners on key levers to achieve the target which include:
Increasing take up of the working tax credit (WTC) where take up among potentially eligible groups is low;
Jobcentre Plus promoting child care as part of packages to get people back into work;
The role of childrens centres and extended schools in providing child care in disadvantaged areas and promoting its take up through outreach;
Improving take up of the three and four-year-old free entitlement, where overall take up is high, but significantly lower among lower income families;
Maximising the impact of specific initiatives such as the free entitlement pilot for two-year-olds and the London Childcare Affordability Programme.
To increase the proportion of young children achieving a good level of development at the end of the Early Years Foundation Stage by an additional 4 percentage points from 2008 results, by 2011. A good level of development is defined for this measure by a total points score of at least 78 across all 13 Early Years Foundation Stage Profile scaleswith at least six in each of the communication, language and literacy and personal, social and emotional development scales.
Mrs. Maria Miller: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families how many (a) full-time and (b) part-time teacher vacancies there were in local authority maintained (i) primary and (ii) secondary schools in (A) England, (B) the South East and (C) Hampshire constituencies in each year since 2000. 
Jim Knight [holding answer 23 October 2007]: The following table provides full and part-time teacher vacancy numbers in local authority maintained primary and secondary schools in England, the South East and Hampshire local authorities in January 2000 to 2007. This information is not available for individual constituencies.
|Full-time( 1) and part-time vacancy( 2) numbers in local authority maintained nursery/primary and secondary schools in the South East Region, Hampshire local authority and England, in January 2000 to 2007|
|South East Region||Hampshire local authority||England|
|Nursery and primary||Secondary||Nursery and primary||Secondary||Nursery and primary||Secondary|
|Full- time||Part- time||Full- time||Part- time||Full- time||Part- time||Full- time||Part- time||Full- time||Part- time||Full- time||Part- time|
|(1) Advertised vacancies for full-time permanent appointments (or appointments of at least one terms duration). Includes vacancies being filled on a temporary basis of less than one term.|
(2) Part-time vacancies were not collected prior to 2004.
DCSF Annual 618g Survey
|Next Section||Index||Home Page|