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21 July 2008 : Column 944W—continued

Mr. Oaten: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what the average time was between the lodging of an appeal with a special educational needs and disability tribunal and a tribunal decision in each of the last three years. [220320]

Kevin Brennan: The Special Educational Needs and Disability Tribunal (SENDIST) records the average time taken from registering an SEN appeal to issuing a decision by the school year from September to August. This information has been previously published in the SENDIST annual reports.

The following table shows the average time taken from registration of an SEN appeal by SENDIST to the time a decision following a tribunal hearing is issued.

School year Number decisions issued Average number of months










Not all appeals registered end up with a decision as a substantial number of appeals are withdrawn by the parent or conceded by the local authority.

SENDIST also registers claims of disability discrimination and the following table shows the average time taken from registration of a claim to the issue of a decision.

School year Number of decisions Average number of months










SENDIST reports that these claims have proved to be more complicated than SEN appeals involving much paperwork, lengthy hearings and many witnesses and this is reflected in the average disposal time.

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World Book Day

Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what steps his Department took to involve schools in celebrating World Book Day in 2008. [218528]

Jim Knight: The Department funds the National Literacy Trust (NLT) to run the National Reading Campaign, which promotes reading for pleasure throughout the whole community. To celebrate World Book Day, the NLT contributed a double-page article for the World Book Day magazine, distributed to schools, including suggestions for how schools could take part. NLT also featured World Book Day on the front page of the NLT and Reading Connects websites, and promoted the Day in the training courses which they offer to teachers.

The National Reading Campaign forms part of the 2008 National Year of Reading (NYR), also funded by my Department. The NYR aims to promote and celebrate reading for all, and in all its forms—“anything, anytime, anyplace”. World Book Day was highlighted on the NYR website as part of the “challenge period” prior to the official launch of the year on 31 March 2008.

Wright Robinson Sports College

Sir Gerald Kaufman: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what the sources of funding for the rebuilding of Wright Robinson Sports College in Manchester, Gorton constituency are; and what the cost of the rebuilding is. [219535]

Jim Knight: The Government supported the rebuilding of Wright Robinson Sports College through the private finance initiative (PFI). Manchester local authority received £35 million PFI credits which equates to a capital value of £24.1 million.

The total value of the contract let by Manchester local authority was £29.79 million.

Home Department

Borders: Personal Records

Philip Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what estimate she has made of the net financial effect of the e-borders programme on the aviation industry. [211107]

Mr. Byrne: It has been estimated that the capital investment required over 10 years is in the region of £52 million (of which £32 million falls to UK based carriers). The total running costs over the same period are projected to be an estimated £278 million (of which £171 million falls to UK carriers). These estimates have been based upon figures provided by carriers and the assessment of Project Semaphore.

The potential financial costs to the aviation industry of implementing the data collection requirements of the e-Borders programme have been analysed as part of a regulatory impact assessment, connected with the laying of secondary legislation to permit data collection and sharing by the border agencies. The regulatory impact assessment can be found at:

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There will be a potential benefit to carriers with reduction in carriers liability (CL) and removals costs. The ability of carriers to provide evidence that passengers appeared properly documented at the start of their journey will help them avoid the imposition of a CL charge. This would, in turn, reduce the incidence of detention and removal costs for carriers.

Philip Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) when she expects all passenger movements to utilise passenger name record data; [215514]

(2) for which UK routes she expects passenger name record data to be used by December 2013. [215511]

Mr. Byrne: There are currently no plans to collect passenger name record data for all passenger movements.

Philip Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department when her Department plans to launch the consultation into the Authority to Carry scheme. [218410]

Mr. Byrne: The Government have committed to a full consultation period on the introduction of an Authority to Carry scheme. This consultation period will be launched following the completion of ongoing development work and initial discussions with stakeholders.

Philip Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department pursuant to the answer of 7 July 2008, Official Report, column 1241W, on borders: personal records, when she expects the first manual phase of the Authority to Carry scheme to be implemented. [218434]

Mr. Byrne: In line with our commitment in ‘Securing the UK Border’, an Authority to Carry scheme will be implemented following the introduction of regulations required under s124 of the Nationality, Immigration and Asylum Act 2002. These regulations will be brought forward for parliamentary approval in due course, following a 12-week consultation period.

Mr. Brazier: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what extended functionality and services in relation to the e-borders programme have been agreed. [218796]

Mr. Byrne: The following extended functionality and services to the e-Borders Programme have been agreed:

Mr. Brazier: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what role Deloitte have played in the e-borders programme; at what cost to date; and what the full contractual cost of using Deloitte is estimated to be. [218829]

Mr. Byrne [holding answer 16 July 2008]: Deloitte consultancy services provided support to the procurement process to acquire a service provider for the e-Borders Programme. Their role included assisting with bidder
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discussions and contract finalisation activities. Since the contract was awarded to Trusted Borders, and subsequent to the transition phase from procurement to implementation, Deloitte has provided advisory support to various workstreams of the programme. This is in relation to the design of the e-Borders solution.

The cost to date of the services provided by Deloitte is £23.8 million. The full contractual cost is unavailable as Deloitte support is ongoing with, a variable resource requirement.

Mr. Brazier: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what extended functionality and services to the e-borders programme have been agreed since the contract with Raytheon began; whether the other consortia which competed for the contract were informed of the extended functionality and service requirements prior to the selection of the Raytheon consortium; and whether any of the original consortia bidding for the contract submitted extended functionality and service requirements in their original bids. [218831]

Mr. Byrne [holding answer 16 July 2008]: Since the award of the e-Borders Programme contract, a number of extended functionality and service requirements have been agreed. These services are:

A number of possible additional services were identified during the procurement process (including OPI, DTS and Profiling) and were not therefore included in the original bids.

OPI, DTS and Profiling services were identified as requirements before contract award. Both shortlisted bidders were aware of these and included them in their BAFO responses.

Crime: Victims

Mr. Jim Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what steps the Government has taken to minimise any harmful effects arising from police questioning of victims of crime. [218164]

Mr. McNulty: The National Policing Improvement Agency, alongside the Association of Chief Police Officers, work to improve the professional competence of all police officers and staff tasked with conducting investigations by assessing individual practitioner’s performance measured against established national standards. These standards are applied, not just at the conclusion of interview training, but also throughout an individual’s career by supervision, appraisal and review of performance.

The intermediary special measure provision of the Youth Justice and Criminal Evidence Act 1999 is currently being rolled out nationally with completion expected by September. As well as providing support at the trial for vulnerable witnesses, an intermediary assesses a witness at the investigative stage and provides support to ensure that the witness is asked appropriate questions.

The Office for Criminal Justice Reform (OCJR) updated “Achieving Best Evidence in Criminal Proceedings:
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Guidance for Vulnerable or Intimidated Witnesses, including Children”, which was launched in autumn 2007, This provides guidance and best practice on how to interview appropriately vulnerable and intimidated witnesses, how to identify their needs and wishes and the support available to them. OCJR is currently in the process of revising the other guidance in the suite of documents published in 2001-02 to support the implementation of Special Measures. This includes the guidance document “Vulnerable Witnesses: A Police Service Guide”, which is aimed at aiding front-line officers identify vulnerable witnesses, so that they can receive the support they need.

Departmental Alcoholic Drinks

David Simpson: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what mechanisms are in place in her Department to monitor expenditure on alcohol for hospitality purposes. [219598]

Mr. Byrne: Department budget holders are responsible for ensuring that in considering proposals relating to the expenditure of alcohol for hospitality, all relevant financial implications, including those relating to propriety, regularity and value for money, are taken into account.

They are also responsible for ensuring the accuracy of the information held on the accounting system for their area and, where applicable, that accounting records are maintained in a form suited to the requirements of management as well as in the form prescribed for published accounts.

Home Office expenditure on alcohol for hospitality purposes conforms to departmental guidance on financial procedures and propriety, which complies with the principles of Managing Public Money and the Treasury handbook on Regularity and Propriety.

The definition of hospitality includes the provision of drink for non civil servants where it is beneficial to the interests of the Department.

Departmental Buildings

Mr. Pickles: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if she will place in the Library a copy of the schedule of charges levied for minor works under the Home Office facilities management contract with Ecovert FM for 2 Marsham Street. [218276]

Mr. Byrne: Ecovert FM is contracted to the 2 Marsham Street PFI provider Anne's Gate Properties (AGP). The PFI contract contains what was at the time a standard confidentiality clause. The supplier has advised that it does not wish this commercially sensitive information to be disclosed and I am therefore unable to disclose the information requested.

Departmental Data Protection

Mr. Hoban: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department to which external agencies and companies personal data held by her Department has been transferred in the last 12 months. [180401]

Mr. Byrne: All sharing of personal data is carried out in accordance with the requirements of the Data Protection Act (1998) and the Human Rights Acts (1998). The
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Home Office also has a number of pieces of legislation permitting the disclosure of information, subject to the DPA and HRA, including:

In order to protect the public, the Home Office shares personal data with a number of other organisations including law enforcement agencies, other border control agencies, agencies involved in the protection of children and vulnerable adults, and agencies responsible for vetting and barring.

Departmental Disciplinary Proceedings

Mr. Redwood: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many staff in her Department and its agencies have been (a) dismissed and (b) disciplined for their conduct in the last two years. [217408]

Mr. Byrne: The number of staff who were (a) dismissed and (b) disciplined for their conduct during the period 1 July 2006 to 30 June 2008, is set out in the attached table.

The Department's disciplinary procedures have a number of stages, some informal and some formal. Information on the procedures is available to staff through the department's intranet sites, to which all staff have access.

Breakdown of disciplinary action across Home Office

Dismissed Disciplined short of dismissal

Home Office headquarters



UK Border Agency



Identity and Passport Service



Criminal Records Bureau






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