Previous Section Index Home Page

22 Jan 2008 : Column 1903W—continued


From 2010, all children will be entitled to 15 hours a week of free early years provision for 38 weeks of the year and access will be more flexible. The extension will
22 Jan 2008 : Column 1904W
be rolled out across the country over the next three years. Middlesbrough is a pathfinder local authority and will begin delivering 15 hours a week from September 2008. Nationally, we expect 25 per cent. of children in all local authorities to be able to access 15 hours in 2009 with the remainder being eligible in 2010.

In addition to revenue funding to support roll out of the extended free entitlement, £642 million capital funding has been made available nationally over the period 2008-11 to improve quality in early years settings and to ensure that all children, including disabled children, are able to access provision. £378,220,601 child care sufficiency and access revenue funding has also been made available over the same period to ensure that local authorities can fulfil their duties to secure sufficient child care for parents in work and training and to provide information and advice to parents and providers; and to increase take-up of child care and early education, especially among disadvantaged groups. It is for local authorities to determine how this funding is allocated based on local needs and circumstances.

Pupil Exclusions: Appeals

Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what advice he has sought on whether decisions to exclude children from school may be challenged in the courts; and if he will make a statement. [179957]

Kevin Brennan: It has long been the case that any of the decision making parties in an exclusion (head teacher, governing body and, for permanent exclusions, an independent appeal panel) can have their decision challenged by parents by application to the High Court for a judicial review. An application for judicial review would not normally be granted until all other avenues for appeal had been exhausted.

Pupils: Disabled

Mr. Jenkins: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families in respect of which (a) disabilities and (b) diseases his Department has issued guidance to local authorities on best practice in management of pupils. [179500]

Kevin Brennan: A list of guidance relating to disabilities and diseases that the Department has produced is available at http://www.teachernet.gov.uk

The main guidance for local authorities on pupils with disabilities relates to fulfilling their statutory duties. The “Special Educational Needs Code of Practice” provides practical advice to local authorities, maintained schools, early education settings and others on carrying out their statutory duties to identify, assess and make provision for children’s special educational needs. The resource “Implementing the Disability Discrimination Act in schools and early years settings” was sent to every local authority and provides them with practical tools to improve their effectiveness in making reasonable adjustments to include disabled pupils and in reviewing and revising their accessibility plans. The resource includes a section to help schools develop their disability equality scheme.


22 Jan 2008 : Column 1905W

Relating to diseases, joint non-statutory guidance with the Department of Health “Managing Medicines in Schools and Early Year Settings” explains what schools can do to help children with medical conditions; with the Council for Disabled Children “Including me: managing complex health needs in schools and early years settings” contains practical examples and case studies on supporting these children to maintain their health and access the curriculum and the positive difference it makes to their lives; with the Health Protection Agency, guidelines on minimising the risk from infection to children and staff and most recently “Planning for a human influenza pandemic”.

School Meals: Finance

Annette Brooke: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families (1) what representations he has received from local authorities on Government funding for infrastructure to support the provision of hot school meals; and if he will make a statement; [179300]

(2) what funding his Department will provide for each local authority to meet targets for provision of hot school meals. [179301]

Kevin Brennan [holding answer 15 January 2008]: We have received representations from a wide range of authorities about funding for the infrastructure to support the provision of hot school meals.

Capital funding for schools this year is £6.4 billion, rising to over £8 billion by 2010-11. Nearly all of this money is available for use to install or improve kitchen and dining areas in schools where this is the local priority. In addition, we are making available to local authorities £150 million of targeted capital funding between 2008 and 2011, to support the installation of new kitchens in schools where currently there are none, and where there is exceptional need.

Providing a hot meal does not require every school to have a kitchen. There are several ways of reheating food on school premises, such as using microwave ovens; or schools may use a centralised preparation and delivery service. The Government have invested £220 million between 2005-06 to 2007-08 to assist authorities and schools in improving school food and providing a hot school meal.

Further funding of £240 million over the three years 2008-09 to 2010-11 will also be available to local authorities and schools to help them manage the direct costs of providing a school lunch.

Schools: Newcastle Upon Tyne

Jim Cousins: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families how many children aged 11 to 16 years there were in local education authority maintained schools in the city of Newcastle upon Tyne in each year since 1997. [180891]

Jim Knight: The requested information is given in the table and relates to the number of pupils aged 11 to 15 at the start of the academic year (some pupils will turn 16 throughout the year).


22 Jan 2008 : Column 1906W
Maintained primary, secondary and special schools, pupil referral units( 1,2) : Number (headcount) of pupils aged 11 to 15—as at January each year: 1997 to 2007—Newcastle upon Tyne local authority
Pupils aged 11 to 15( 3,4)
Maintained primary and secondary schools Maintained special schools Pupil referral units( 5) Total maintained schools

1997

13,692

359

48

14,099

1998

13,779

327

58

14,164

1999

14,005

317

56

14,378

2000

14,111

251

94

14,456

2001

14,126

254

53

14,433

2002

14,176

254

53

14,483

2003

14,232

251

67

14,550

2004

13,918

246

106

14,270

2005

13,867

248

91

14,206

2006

13,822

253

98

14,173

2007

13,473

253

142

13,868

(1) Includes middle schools as deemed.
(2) Excludes dually registered pupils.
(3) Includes only those pupils aged 11 to 15. Age is taken from the start of the academic year.
(4) Age of pupil as at 31 August each year.
(5) Also included pupils with other providers.

Secondary Education: Sports

Mr. Hoban: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families (1) what proportion of secondary school pupils played four or more hours of school sport per week in the latest period for which figures are available; [178941]

(2) what proportion of (a) primary and (b) secondary school pupils played some form of competitive inter-school sport in each of the last 10 years for which figures are available; [178942]

(3) what the average time spent playing school sport by secondary school pupils was in each of the last five years, broken down by Government region. [178561]

Kevin Brennan: The annual PE and School Sport Survey was introduced in 2003/04 and collects data from schools in school sport partnerships relating to the percentage of pupils participating in at least two hours high quality PE and school sport in a typical week. The survey does not collect data relating to the proportion of pupils playing four or more hours of sport or the average time spent on PE and school sport.

The 2007 PE and School Sport Survey found that 86 per cent. of 5-16 year olds were participating in at least two hours high quality PE and school sport each week.

Over the last four years, the percentage of pupils in primary and secondary schools who took part in inter-school competition during the academic year is as follows:

Percentage
Primary Secondary

2003/04

35

32

2004/05

41

32

2005/06

46

32

2006/07

51

34

2006/07

(1)36

34

(1) Including Years 1-3, which was included in the survey in this year.

22 Jan 2008 : Column 1907W

From this year, we will also be collecting data on the percentage of pupils participating in a further three hours per week of sporting activity.

Prior to 2003/04, no data on PE and school sport was collected.

Special Educational Needs

Mark Hunter: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what steps his Department is taking to increase parental awareness of dyslexia and other special educational needs. [180072]

Kevin Brennan: Through the Education Act 1996, local authorities are required to arrange for the parent of any child with special educational needs in their area to be provided with advice and information about matters relating to those needs. The Special Educational Needs Code of Practice says that local authorities must make arrangements for parent partnership advice services, and it sets out minimum standards for these services. These minimum standards have been built upon through our guidance entitled “Parent Partnership Services - increasing parental confidence” which we published in December last year.

We fund the Council for Disabled Children to provide a National Parent Partnership Network, which supports parent partnership services with information, communication, training and development.

We are providing £64,000 this financial year, and £86,000 next financial year to enable the British Dyslexia Association to enhance their helpline’s provision of information and advice for teachers and parents on best practice in identifying and supporting children with dyslexia.

Special Educational Needs: Kent

Derek Wyatt: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what recent representations he has received on the conduct of special needs investigations in (a) the Kent county council and (b) the Swale borough council areas; what guidance his Department has issued on the conduct of such investigations by local authorities; and if he will make a statement. [180456]

Kevin Brennan [holding answer 21 January 2008]: The Department is not aware of any special needs investigations by Kent county council or the Swale borough council areas.


22 Jan 2008 : Column 1908W

The Department is aware that Kent county council is undertaking a review of specialist provision and support for children with special educational needs in mainstream schools and has published consultation documents. The Education and Inspections Act 2006 provides that before publishing any proposals to make changes to local school organisation, proposers must consult all interested parties and in doing so must have regard to the Secretary of State’s guidance. Guidance can be found on the Department’s website at

We understand that following a complaint, Kent county council has looked at the way consultation documents were sent to parents and other interested parties in the Swale area and that steps are being taken to ensure that copies are made available to all parents and others concerned.

Under the Education Act 1996 all local authorities should keep under review the arrangements made by them for special education provision. School organisation proposals are a matter for local determination and the Department for Children, Schools and Families has no role in the decision making process.

Sure Start Programme: Greater London

Tom Brake: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families how much was allocated to support the work of Sure Start in London in each year since inception, broken down by London constituency. [180600]

Beverley Hughes: The information requested is not available by constituency. The amounts allocated to local authorities in London for Sure Start are shown in the table.

The amounts are for all Sure Start Children’s Centres, including Sure Start Local Programmes, and include both revenue and capital. Data for years prior to 2003-04 is not readily available at local authority level.

The capital funding included for the 2003-08 period is for the wider Sure Start, early years and child care agenda. It is for authorities to decide how much to allocate to children’s centres.

Capital funding for Sure Start Local programmes was not allocated to specific years and is therefore shown under the ‘non year specific’ heading in the table.


Next Section Index Home Page