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Children: Databases

Annette Brooke: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families when he plans to issue revised guidance on the implementation of sections 10 and 11 of the Children Act 2004; what plans he has to provide funding for implementation of such guidance; and what steps his Department will take to monitor health agencies’ compliance with such guidance. [223099]

Beverley Hughes [holding answer 10 September 2008]: As set out in the Children’s Plan launched by the Secretary of State in December 2007, the Government are committed to publishing revised statutory guidance under Section 10 of the Children Act 2004 on inter-agency co-operation to improve the well-being of children, young people and families later this year. A revised version of the statutory guidance under Section 11 on making arrangements to safeguard and promote the welfare of children, originally issued in 2005, was published in April 2007. The Government have no plans to issue further revised guidance at this stage.

The Government have no plans to provide specific additional funding for implementing these guidance documents, which are intended to clarify the statutory responsibilities of local authorities and other bodies, including health agencies, for which they receive mainstream funding. The Government have however commissioned an audit of the extent to which public organisations have been complying with their duties under Section 11. The results of the survey will be made public in spring 2009.

From April 2009, the performance of local authorities and their partners will be assessed under the new, multi-inspectorate Comprehensive Area Assessment (CAA). This will focus on the delivery of key outcomes in an area, and the contribution of statutory and non-statutory partners, including health agencies, will be in scope. Inspectorates are currently consulting on CAA, and intend to publish their framework in February 2009.

Children: Disabled

Mrs. Riordan: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what plans he has for funding for disabled children in schools in the next three years. [223103]

Kevin Brennan [holding answer 10 September 2008]: Local authorities are responsible for the distribution of funding (including funding provided through the dedicated schools grant (DSG)) to schools in their area. Each local authority in consultation with their schools forum has a funding formula that they have designed and agreed to cater for the needs of their own area including children with disabilities. Local authorities planned expenditure on special educational needs—which includes but is not limited to disabled children—has increased by over £2.3 billion from £2.8 billion in 2000-01 to £5.1 billion in 2008-09. This represents a cash terms increase of 84 per cent. between the 2000-01 and the 2008-09 financial years.

The local authority is best placed to meet the need of its schools in their area and to work with schools to ensure that resources are applied and managed effectively to deliver the highest possible standards of education.

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The Schools Access Initiative has £288 million over the three years 2008-11 (£96 million per year) as capital funding to assist local authorities in making schools accessible to disabled pupils and those with SEN.

The DCSF has committed £430 million in this CSR period through the joint DCSF—Department of Health “Aiming High for Disabled Children” programme to support transformation of services for disabled children, young people and their families. This will focus on improvements to services such as short breaks, transition to adulthood, accessible child care and support for parental engagement.

Children’s Centres: Parents

Mrs. Maria Miller: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families how many and what proportion of Sure Start Children's Centres run positive parenting programmes. [223101]

Beverley Hughes [holding answer 10 September 2008]: All Sure Start Children's Centres are expected to offer parenting and family support services, including parenting programmes, based on consultation with families and identified local need. Information on exactly which services are provided in each Sure Start Children's Centre is not collected centrally.

Departmental Conferences

Mr. Hoban: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families if he will list the conferences hosted by his Department in each of the last two years; and what the cost was of each conference. [211696]

Kevin Brennan: The information requested is not held centrally and could be obtained only at disproportionate cost.


Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families if he will take steps to establish a strategy to tackle age discrimination and promote age equality in the provision of goods and services (a) by his Department and (b) within the sectors for which he has policy responsibility; and if he will make a statement. [210461]

Kevin Brennan: The Department is committed to ensuring that children of all ages and stages of development receive the appropriate education and services. The Government recently published their response to the consultation on the proposals for the Equality Bill, “A Framework for Fairness”. The response made clear that, after careful consideration, it has been decided not to extend legal protection from age discrimination to children. This is because a child’s age is closely related to his or her levels of development and need, something which is not generally true of an adult’s age. Children need to be treated in ways that are appropriate to their different ages, and age-related treatment of children in schools and in the delivery of children’s services is not the same as age discrimination.

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Head Teachers: Stress

Tim Farron: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families how many head teachers have left their post as a result of a stress-related illness in each of the last five years. [223520]

Jim Knight: The information requested is not collected centrally.

Personal Records: ContractPoint Database

Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families whether police forces will have access to the ContactPoint database; and if he will make a statement. [223504]

Kevin Brennan: Members of police forces and authorities in England are named in The Children Act 2004 (Information Database) England Regulations 2007 as one of the groups of people who may be given access to the database by a local authority.

Youth justice services are an important part of the support provided to children and young people. Access to ContactPoint will help to inform their decisions about the most appropriate way to support a child and ensure that work is not duplicated.

Access will be granted only to those individuals who need to use it as part of their work supporting children and young people. For police forces this will include those who regularly work with young people in areas such as victim units, domestic violence, safeguarding, child abuse investigation, and youth offending teams. All users will have been through mandatory training and security clearance before being granted access to ContactPoint.

ContactPoint will hold basic information only. It will not hold details of arrest or criminal activity; it will not provide a record of whether or not a child or a member of their family is an offender; and it will not hold subjective observations or case information.

In addition to supporting children's services, the regulations permit the Secretary of State or a local authority to disclose data held on ContactPoint in very limited, prescribed circumstances, including where:

For these purposes, police would have to make a special request, on a case by case basis, directly to the Secretary of State or local authority and make a clear and exceptional case for disclosure. The Secretary of State or local authority will then consider each case on its merits when deciding whether to disclose the data.

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Schools: Finance

Harry Cohen: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what the real change in spending per school child has been (a) since 1997, (b)
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in the last 10 years and (c) in the last five years (i) in Waltham Forest, (ii) in Redbridge and (iii) nationally. [223659]

Jim Knight: The available information on spending per school child since 1997-98 to 2006-07 is contained within the following tables:

School based expenditure( 1, 2, 3 ) per pupil( 4) in cash terms since 1997-98
£ per pupil in cash terms( 5)

1997-98( 6) 1998-99( 6) 1999-2000( 2,7) 2000-01 2001-02 2002-03( 2,3,8) 2003-04 2004-5 2005-06 2006-07












Waltham Forest






















School based expenditure( 1, 2, 3 ) per pupil( 4) in real terms since 1997-98
£ per pupil in real terms( 5)

1997-98( 6) 1998-99( 6) 1999-2000( 2,7) 2000-01 2001-02 2002-03( 2,3,8) 2003-04 2004-05 2005-06 2006-07












Waltham Forest






















(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) 1999-2000 saw a change in data source when the data collection moved from the R01 form collected by the ODPM to the Section 52 form from the DCSF (formally) DFES. 2002-03 saw a further break in the time series following the introduction of Consistent Financial Reporting (CFR) to schools and the associated restructuring of the outturn tables. The change in sources is shown by the dotted line. Comparable figures are not available prior to 1992-93.
(3). The calculation for 2002-03 onwards is broadly similar to the calculation in previous years. However, 2001-02 and earlier years includes all premature retirement compensation (PRC) and Crombie payments, mandatory PRC payments and other indirect employee expenses. In 2001-02 this accounted for approximately £70 per pupil. From 2002-03 onwards only the schools element of these categories is included and this accounted for approximately £50 per pupil of the 2002-03 total. Also, for some LAs, expenditure that had previously been attributed to the school sectors was reported within the LA part of the form from 2002-03, though this is not quantifiable from existing sources.
(4) Pupil numbers include only those pupils attending maintained establishments within each sector and are drawn from the DCSF (formally DfES) Annual Schools Census adjusted to be on a financial year basis.
(5) Figures are as reported by local authorities as at 9th September 2008 and are rounded to the nearest £10.
(6) Spending in 1997-98 reflects the transfer of monies from local government to central government for the nursery vouchers scheme. These were returned to local government from 1998-99.
(7) The 1999-00 figures reflect the return of GM schools to local authority maintenance.
(8) School based expenditure in nursery schools was not recorded in 2002-03 and are therefore not included in the figures for that year.
Expenditure was not distinguished between the pre-primary and primary sectors until the inception of Section 52 for financial year 1999-2000.

Schools: Inspections

Tim Farron: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what estimate he has made of the number of head teachers who have left their post within six months of the completion of an Ofsted inspection of their school in each of the last five years. [223519]

Jim Knight: The information is not collected centrally.

Home Department

Biometrics: Fingerprints

Lynne Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what assessment she has made of the capability of external suppliers to provide for the secure collection of fingerprint biometrics; and if she will make a statement. [219754]

Meg Hillier: The Identity and Passport Service has appointed five suppliers to act as the ‘Strategic Supplier Group' for the National Identity Scheme. This group (CSC, EDS, IBM, Fujitsu and Thales) signed framework agreements with IPS in June 2008 and will compete in procurement exercises for contracts to deliver National Identity Scheme capabilities.

As part of the framework procurement assessments were made of each firm's capability and capacity in a number of areas related to the scheme including those related to biometrics. As part of the process for awarding specific contracts assessments will be made of the proposed approaches and technology. In addition all technology deployed will be subject to thorough and robust testing and trialling prior to deployment.

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