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|(1) Excludes dually registered pupils.|
Jim Knight: The number of non-statemented special educational needs pupils studying in pupil referral units in 2008 is 7,590. This figure excludes dually registered pupils and includes pupils from other providers. The figure can be found in table 1b of the Statistical First Release Special Educational Needs in England, January 2008
Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families how much funding per student will be made available for each student taking a (a) diploma, (b) GCSE, (c) A-level and (d) BTEC course in 2008-09; and if he will make a statement. 
Jim Knight: Funding for pre-16 education does not vary by type or number of qualifications taken, so there is not a distinct level of funding for a student taking a GCSE. We estimate the average level of funding per year for 14 to 16-year-olds undertaking key stage 4 (KS4) in 2007-08 is £4,106. This figure excludes grants (including schools standards grant, school development grant and other non-delegated funding to schools).
Additional funding is provided to local authorities for 14 to 16-year-olds taking diplomas through the diploma specific grant to reflect the additional costs arising from the practical, applied nature of the learning. The level of funding will vary according to the diploma line and level being studied as shown in the following table.
|Diploma line||Level||Amount per place (£)|
The level of diploma grant to LAs with diploma pupils also includes an allowance for additional costs arising in areas with relatively sparse populations and large distances between institutions between which pupils may need to travel. The average level of funding is £1,000 per student per year. Funding of 16 to 18-year-olds is based on the size of the learning programmes they study; factors pertaining to the institution where study takes place including disadvantage, area costs and success rates; and any additional support that individual learners may need.
An illustrative example of funding that a school sixth form would receive over two years for a student on a diploma, A-level and Edexcel national diploma vocational programme respectively, and excluding institutional and individual learner factors, is as follows:
Mr. Swayne: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what guidance he has issued to local education authorities on the extent to which pupils are required to participate in religious observance when such observance forms part of a religious education lesson; and if he will make a statement. 
Jim Knight: No specific guidance on religious observance within religious education has been issued to local authorities, and the issue is not covered in either Circular 1/94: Religious Education and Collective Worship or the National Framework for Religious Education (QCA, 2004). Religious education syllabi for non-denominational schools are set at local authority level by Standing Advisory Councils on Religious Education (SACREs). Each locally agreed syllabus must take into account not only Christianity but the teaching and practices of the other principle religions represented in the country. Local syllabuses should not require religious observance within RE.
Anne Main: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what recent representations he has received from local education authorities on the effect of increases in the cost of fuel on the provision of school bus services; and if he will make a statement. 
Jim Knight: The Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families has not received any recent representations from local authorities regarding the effect of the increases in the cost of fuel on the provision of school bus services. We are aware from the Department for Transports on-going discussions with bus operators that there are concerns about the impact of increased fuel costs on school bus services. However, the responsibility for determining school transport arrangements including agreeing the cost of school transport contracts with local bus operators is a matter for local authorities.
Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families (1) what estimate he has made of the number of places which will be available on diploma courses in (a) September 2008 and (b) September 2009; and if he will make a statement; 
(3) what his latest estimate is of the number of places there will be on diploma courses in (a) 2010-11 and (b) 2011-12; how many students he expects to be studying for diplomas in each of those years; and if he will make a statement. 
Jim Knight: In September 2008 38,000 diploma places will be available; to date approximately 20,000 pupils have signed up for a diploma course. These figures are estimates because many young people will not yet have made a decision about which qualifications to undertake. The capacity in the system is increasing rapidly and 317 groups of schools, colleges and training providers will introduce new diplomas from 2009the number of places available and young people enrolling on the courses will be determined over the coming months. Places for 2010 and beyond will be determined by consortiums and local 14-19 Partnerships through local planning and will be subject to approval through the Gateway process.
Jim Knight: Our focus has been on developing high quality diploma qualifications which have the support of higher education and employers. The first learners have yet to start their qualifications therefore we have no reliable basis for any estimates of completion.
Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families how many staff in his Department are working on the development and introduction of diplomas; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families how much (a) his Department and its predecessor and (b) the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority has spent on employing external consultants to advise on the new diplomas in each year since 2005; and if he will make a statement. 
|( b ) QCA|
Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what targets have been set for the effectiveness of the new diplomas in each year since 2005; what the targets are now; and if he will make a statement. 
Jim Knight: No targets have been set for the diploma. We are committed to fully evaluating each phase of the diploma to assess how effectively it has been implemented and the impact it is having on the participation and achievement of young people. Delivery of the diploma will also be subject to independent inspection by Ofsted.
Mr. Hurd: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families how many full-time speech and language therapists are employed in (a) youth offender institutions and (b) secure training centres. 
The responsibility for commissioning health services in young offender institutions and adult prisons in England has been fully devolved to national health service primary care trusts (PCTs) since April 2006. PCTs work with establishments to develop comprehensive health needs assessments of their populations and then commission on the basis of that need. Provision of treatment for speech, language and communication problems will therefore differ depending on the locality and on the specific needs of the individual concerned.
All young offenders receive health screening on reception into prison and in addition will be screened for their educational needs. A new reception screen for young people has been developed by the Youth Justice Board and is being piloted. It contains a section looking at disability and impairment, which contains a question designed to identify speech difficulties in young people entering custody.
A general learning needs assessment is used to identify all learning difficulties and disabilities. As part of this process, a member of education staff may have concerns about a prisoners speech and language capability. Where such problems are identified, either as a result of the health screen or the education screen, a referral to an appropriate health professional would be expected to be made.
The Youth Justice Board manages contracts with the operators of secure training centres which provide requirements for the services to be delivered to young people accommodated within the centres. These contracts reflect and expand upon the National Standards for Youth Justice Services. Health services in secure training centres are the responsibility of the secure training centre operators who are contracted to deliver health care broadly in line with national health service standards. Trainees in custody at the secure training centre will be entitled to a basic monthly medical examination and/or health assessment by health care staff at the secure training centre and will have access to national health service facilities and specialists when clinically required.
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