|Previous Section||Index||Home Page|
Kevin Brennan [holding answer 12 November 2007]: The well-being of looked after children is paramount and legislation focuses on securing this. Section 23(7)(b) of the Children Act 1989 places a duty on local authorities to accommodate a child together with his/her siblings so far as is 'reasonably practical and consistent with his welfare'. The Act also requires local authorities to encourage contact between siblings.
An important factor to be taken into account in placement decisions is the number of children who may be placed in a foster home. Paragraphs 2 and 3 of Schedule 7 to the Act prescribe a usual fostering limit of three children. Local authorities may, however, exceed the usual fostering limit if the children concerned are all siblings.
issued statutory guidance to adoption agencies emphasising the importance of children being placed in sibling groups where this is in their best interests;
required local authorities to make a range of adoption support services available, including financial support to facilitate siblings being placed together; and
set up an adoption register for England and Wales which enables children and prospective adopters to be matched beyond local areas. It has an important role to play in finding matches for more difficult to place children, such as those in sibling groups.
The Learning and Skills Council collect data on learners in further education colleges through the Individualised Learner Record. Latest full-year participation figures are for 2005/06 and were published in December 2006. In 2005/06, there were 8,025 learners studying at further education colleges in England who were living in Wales prior to enrolment.
|(1) To date|
The data was requested for the last 11 years, however, the Department is only able to supply nine years. The Department is only required to retain financial records and original documentation for six years after the end of the financial year in which the transaction took place.
The Department for Children, Schools and Families was created on 28 June 2007 as a result of a machinery of government change and the expenditure recorded above includes those of the two predecessor Departments, the Department for Education and Employment (DfEE) and the Department of Education and Skills (DfES). The expenditure for 2007-08 will also include any costs incurred by the newly created Department for Universities, Innovation and Skills, where these costs relate to areas formerly the responsibility of the Department for Education and Skills.
Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what his most recent estimate is of the amount of per pupil deprivation-related funding for each school in England for the latest 12 months for which information is available; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families if he will make a statement on the different methodologies used by local authorities to distribute deprivation-related funding. 
Jim Knight: In September 2006, my Department produced a technical review of deprivation indicators, containing summary information on the main deprivation indicators potentially available and the extent to which they were being used by local authorities for that purpose. This guidance can be found on the Teachernet website at the following link:
Since 1997 we have introduced an extensive range of measures to tackle bullying in schools. We have issued guidance for schools and the Anti-Bullying Charter which includes a detailed list of questions for the school community to consider when formulating its anti-bullying policy. We have worked with and funded a number of partners, including: the Anti-Bullying Alliance (ABA) who arrange the annual Anti-Bullying Week, and provide a range of advice and support to local authorities; ParentLine Plus, who run a helpline for parents whose children are being bullied and provide other resources through their Be Someone to Tell campaign; and ChildLine in Partnership with Schools (CHIPS) who run peer mentoring schemes for the Department. We also fund awards for anti-bullying work as part of the Princess Diana Memorial Awards scheme.
We have placed a legal duty on head teachers to determine measures to promote good behaviour, respect for others and to prevent all forms of bullying among pupils as part of their overall behaviour policy. The Education and Inspections Act (2006) Act also provides head teachers with the power, to such extent as is reasonable, to regulate the conduct of pupils when they are off-site or not under the control or charge of a member of staff. This is of particular significance to cyberbullying, which is often likely to take place out of school but which can impact very strongly on the school life of those pupils involved.
We recently launched comprehensive new guidance for schools which replaces Dont Suffer in Silence. This was issued under the new title Safe to Learn: Embedding Anti-Bullying Work in Schools on 21 September 2007. It includes specific advice on homophobic bullying and cyberbullying, and links to pre-existing guidance on bullying around racism, religion and culture that was issued last year. To complete this suite of guidance, we have begun preparing advice on how to tackle the bullying of pupils with special educational needs and disabilities will publish this next spring.
We have asked the National Strategies and anti-Bullying Alliance to work with schools and local authorities to ensure the guidance is effectively implemented on the ground and we will monitor this very closely. We have also asked the National Strategies to provide challenge and support to those schools which have been identified as weak or ineffective in their approach to dealing with bullying.
This year the Department will provide around £1.7 million for anti-bullying programmes, and funding levels are set to rise in future years. This covers the costs of grants to external organisations, as well as anti-bullying resources, the publication of guidance and support for local authorities and schools and directly funded external events.
Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what his most recent estimate is of the likely percentage increase in total schools capital allocation in real terms between 2008-09 and 2010-11 for each English local authority; and if he will make a statement. 
Jim Knight: I will write separately to the hon. Member, setting out the likely percentage increase in total schools capital allocation in real terms between 2008-09 and 2010-11 for each local authority, and will place a copy of the letter in the House of Commons Library. The figures will include allocations made to date, but not additional allocations that will be made through the Building Schools for the Future, academies and targeted programmes that require applications.
Allocations for the period 2008-09 to 2010-11 amount, in real terms, to a seven-fold increase since 1996-97. Total schools' capital funding available for allocation in the years 2007-08 to 2010-11 is set out in the following table, shown in cash and in real terms.
| Note: The GDP deflator base year is 2006-07 and the projected inflation rate for 2007-08 to 2009-10 is an annual 2.7 per cent.|
Lynne Featherstone: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what central Government funding was available to schools in each London borough in each of the last five years. 
|EFS + grants|
| Notes: 1. Price base: cash. 2. Figures reflect relevant sub-blocks of Education Formula Spending (EPS) settlements and include the pensions transfer to EFS and the Learning and Skills Council.|
3. Total funding also includes all revenue grants in DfES departmental expenditure limits relevant to pupils aged 3-19 and exclude education maintenance allowances (EMAs) and grants not allocated at LEA level. 4. The EFS figures exclude the LEA block funding (to cover LEA central functions). Figures also exclude any capital funding. 5. Where responsibility for funding a school has transferred from an authority, related funding no longer appears in the series. 6. Rounding: figures are rounded to the nearest £0.1 million. 7. Status: some of the grant allocations have not been finalised. If these do change, the effect on the funding figures is expected to be minimal.
|Next Section||Index||Home Page|