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10 Dec 2007 : Column 253W—continued

Schools with more than 2,000 pupils
Position in January each year Number of schools Number of pupils Percentage of pupils( 3)





























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All schools
Position in January each year Number of schools Number of pupils Percentage of pupils( 3)





























(1) Includes middle schools as deemed.
(2) Based on a headcount of pupils. Excludes dually registered pupils.
(3) The number of pupils by size band of schools expressed as a percentage of the total number of pupils in maintained secondary schools, city technology colleges and academies.
Pupil numbers have been rounded to the nearest 10.
School Census

Pupils: Per Capita Costs

Sir Peter Soulsby: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what the average spending per secondary school pupil was in (a) the city of Leicester, (b) Leicestershire and (c) England in the last period for which figures are available. [170770]

Jim Knight: The information requested is contained within the following table:

School based expenditure( 1,2 ) per pupil( 3) by local authority maintained secondary schools in Leicester, Leicestershire and England during 2006-07( 4)
Local authority name Secondary school based expenditure per pupil( 1,2,3,4,5 ) (£)







(1) School-based expenditure includes only expenditure incurred directly by the schools. This includes the pay of teachers and school-based support staff, school premises costs, books and equipment, and certain other supplies and services, less any capital items funded from recurrent spending and income from sales, fees and charges and rents and rates. This excludes the central cost of support services such as home to school transport, local authority administration and the financing of capital expenditure. (2) Secondary school based expenditure includes any expenditure on 6th form pupils attending maintained secondary schools. (3) Pupil numbers include only those pupils attending maintained secondary schools and are drawn from the DCSF Annual Schools Census adjusted to be on a financial year basis. (4) 2006-07 data is subject to change by the local authority. (5) Figures are rounded to the nearest 10. (6) Cash term figures as reported by local authorities as at 29 November 2007.

Reading: Teaching Methods

Michael Gove: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what steps his Department has taken to promote synthetic phonics for the teaching of reading in primary schools. [169163]

Jim Knight: The importance of phonics in the teaching of reading has always played a key part in our guidance to primary schools. Following the publication of Sir Jim Rose's “Independent review of the teaching of early reading”, we accepted all of the review’s recommendations, and we have paid particular attention to the recommendation that phonics should be taught as the prime approach to learning to read. We have renewed the Primary National Strategy’s framework for teaching literacy to reflect this. The renewed framework now says that systematic phonics is
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the best route to teach children to read. With help from Jim Rose, we have developed a high quality systematic phonics teaching programme, Letters and Sounds, to support teachers in implementing these changes. To help schools that wish to choose a commercial scheme instead, we have published guidance on a set of criteria which define the key features of an effective phonics teaching programme and which build directly on the review’s recommendations for high quality phonic work. Publishers of such schemes are able to provide a self-evaluation against these criteria on our phonics website.

We have taken steps to ensure that local authorities have the capacity and expertise to support schools in developing effective phonics teaching. The Primary National Strategy’s Communication, Language and Literacy Development programme has provided training in early reading for every local authority and funded additional consultants to lead this work in 50 targeted local authorities. This programme will build greater quality and capacity in the teaching of early literacy through developing work on speaking and listening and strengthening leadership and management of early literacy in schools.

We are also working with local authorities and the Training and Development Agency to ensure that newly qualified practitioners are equipped with the necessary skills to implement the recommendations from Sir Jim Rose’s review.

School Leaving

Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what sanctions may be applied to young people aged 16 to 18 years who fail to pay fines imposed as a consequence of not being in education or training at age 16 to 18 years under the Education and Skills Bill if enacted; and if he will make a statement. [171927]

Jim Knight: The young person can avoid the enforcement process, as it is designed as a deterrent. They can do this by complying with their duty to participate; having a reasonable justification as to why they were not participating; or by showing that they are taking the right steps towards participation. In these cases the young person would not get a fixed penalty notice. If the young person does not pay the fixed penalty notice the local authority will have the power to prosecute them in the Youth court. If a fine is unpaid, it is enforceable using the Youth court’s usual powers, such as taking the money from wages or imposing an unpaid work requirement.

Schools: Biometrics

Ms Buck: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what guidance his Department has issued on the (a) use of and (b) merits of consultation with parents in relation to the sharing and disposal of data on change of school in relation to biometric identification systems in schools. [167621]

Jim Knight: Guidance on the implementation and use of biometric data in schools is available on Becta’s website at:

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The guidance, published in July 2007 by Becta and developed in consultation with the Department for Children, Schools and Families and the Information Commissioner’s Office, advises schools to fully involve parents in any decision to introduce biometric or fingerprint technology to run cashless lunch queues, school libraries and attendance systems.

The guidance underlines that head teachers and governing bodies should be clear and open with all parents and pupils about this and all aspects of their education. The guidance also signposts further advice and support for schools to assist them in meeting their obligations under the Data Protection Act, including ensuring that personal data is kept safe and secure and is not held for longer than necessary. As soon as any pupil leaves a school, their biometric identification data collected for administrative technology systems should be destroyed.

In addition, the Information Commissioner’s Office have published their view on the use of biometric technologies in schools. This is available at:

Schools: Catering

Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what target he has set for the number of schools which should have kitchens with cooking facilities; and if he will make a statement. [172111]

Jim Knight: The Department has not set a target for the number of schools which should have kitchens with cooking facilities. Schools can deliver hot food in a number of different ways, some of which do not require kitchen facilities.

The Government are making a significant capital investment to improve school buildings. This includes a specific fund of £150 million for local authorities from 2008 to support the provision of new kitchens in local authorities with the greatest need.

Schools: Closures

Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families how many (a) secondary and (b) primary schools closed in each local authority area in each year since 1997. [171945]

Jim Knight: Tables showing the number of secondary and primary schools closed in each year since 1997, by local authority, have been placed in the Library.

Schools can be closed for a number of reasons including: to meet demographic changes (population decline); as part of an amalgamation; to allow a Fresh Start school to replace a school in special measures; to allow a school with a religious character to replace a school without a religious character; or as part of another type of local reorganisation.

The figures also show closures as part of the Local Government Reorganisation programme.

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It was not mandatory to supply school closure dates prior to January 2002 and therefore the figures for the years 1997 to 2002 may not be complete.

Schools: Construction

Andrew Stunell: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what percentage of school buildings approved by his Department were built to the Building Research Establishment Environmental Assessment Method (a) very good and (b) excellent standard in each of the last five years; and what the construction cost of those buildings was. [172290]

Jim Knight: The Department does not approve school projects. DCSF did however issue guidance on ‘BREEAM Schools’ ratings in the spring of 2005 including the expectation that all new and refurbished schools above a threshold size and value should be built to achieve a ‘BREEAM Schools’ rating of very good or excellent. We consider this to be a challenging but achievable target in the majority of schools. We do not know if the school buildings certified to BREEAM Schools at the design and procurement stage have actually been built to the BREEAM standards ‘Very Good’ or ‘Excellent’ as they have not undergone a post construction review. We do however know the numbers of ratings that have been achieved at the design and procurement stage.

‘BREEAM Schools’ was introduced by the Building Research Establishment in October 2004. No schools were registered for assessment before 1 April 2005. In the financial year 1 April 2005 to 30 March 2006, 126 schools were registered with BRE for a BREEAM assessment. From 1 April 2006 until 30 November 2006 a further 221 schools were registered for an assessment and by the end of this period four schools had been assessed. From 1 December 2006 until 6 December 2007 a further 254 schools were registered for an assessment and a further 18 schools were assessed. This brings the total number of schools that have been registered to 601 and the number assessed to 22. The ratings achieved so far are broken down as follows:

Type of school Number of pass ratings Number of good ratings Number of very good ratings













Some of the early schools may have been at an advanced stage of design when DCSF issued guidance
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in 2005 on the ratings expected and may also have suffered from a lack of experience of sustainable design. As designers get more experience of designing sustainable schools we expect to see a higher proportion of schools achieving the expected standard. There will always however be schools where site constraints mean that some of the BREEAM credits are unavailable making it very difficult and probably uneconomic to achieve a very high rating in these cases. It should be remembered that BREEAM credits are only given where designs exceed regulatory minimum standards as laid out in the building regulations and the like.

We will be monitoring the results as they come in for the 579 schools that have been registered for an assessment but for which the assessments have yet to be completed. We do not know the names or the construction costs of the schools.

Schools: Crimes of Violence

Michael Gove: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families how many assaults on school staff by pupils were recorded in each of the last three years. [169160]

Jim Knight: Information on the number of assaults on school staff is not collected centrally.

For information on the number of assaults on adults which resulted in exclusion from school, I refer the hon. Member to the reply given to the hon. Member for Yeovil (Mr. Laws) on 14 November 2007, Official Report, column 276W.

Michael Gove: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families how many incidences of violence have been reported in (a) secondary and (b) primary schools in the past three years. [171034]

Jim Knight: Information on the number of reported incidents of violence is not collected centrally.

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