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27 Jan 2009 : Column 497W

Schools: Finance

Michael Gove: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families which schools in the National Challenge initiative reported a budget surplus in the last year for which data are available; and how much the surplus was in each case. [249147]

Jim Knight: I have placed the information requested in the Library. It sets out the value of the budget surplus as at 31 March 2008, for those maintained schools which are being supported with National Challenge funding. Please note that all the figures provided here for 2007-08 exclude schools in Cumbria as that local authority has yet to make a 2007-08 Section 52 Outturn submission.

Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families how much has been allocated to each category of possible expenditure under the National Strategies programme in (a) 2007-08 and (b) 2008-09; and if he will make a statement. [250550]

Jim Knight: The National Strategies is a key mechanism for supporting schools and local authorities to improve teaching and learning of core subjects. £469 million was allocated for the delivery of the National Strategies programmes in 2007-08. This included:

The expected spend in 2008-09 will be in the region of £471 million.

Schools: Standards

Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families how much has been paid to each national challenge school since June 2008; and if he will make a statement. [248633]

Jim Knight: I have placed the information in both Libraries. It shows the amount of funding which has been agreed through national challenge funding plans. It excludes maintained schools below the floor in city challenge areas (which are funded on a different basis).


27 Jan 2009 : Column 498W

Special Educational Needs

John Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families how many and what percentage of pupils had special educational needs without statements in January 2008. [247236]

Sarah McCarthy-Fry: There were 1,390,670 pupils that had special educational needs that did not have statements; this represents 17.2 per cent. of pupils on roll across all schools. The figures are taken from the ‘Special Educational Needs in England: January 2008’ Statistical First Release, the latest of which can be found online at:

Tim Loughton: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families (1) how many maintained special schools (a) opened and (b) closed in 2007-08, broken down by local authority; and how many of those which opened were new builds; [247860]

(2) how many representations his Department has received on the closure of special schools since its inception. [247855]

Sarah McCarthy-Fry: The Department's records, based on the available information provided by local authorities for the number of maintained special schools opened and closed in the academic year 2007-08, is given in the following tables. Information on the number of maintained special schools opened in 2007-08 which were newly built is not available.

Local authority maintained special schools openings by local authority academic year 2007-08
Local authority Total

Barnsley

1

Bromley

1

Coventry

1

Derby

1

Doncaster

5

Lancashire

3

Peterborough

1

Portsmouth

1

Rochdale

3

Sheffield

1

Walsall

2

Wigan

1

Worcestershire

2

Total

23


Local authority maintained special schools closures by local authority academic year 2007-08
Local authority Total

Bedfordshire

1

Bristol City of

1

Coventry

2

Doncaster

7

Lancashire

3

Sheffield

2

Stockton-on-Tees

1

Walsall

1

Wigan

2

Total

20

Source:
Edubase

27 Jan 2009 : Column 499W

The Department receives a number of representations on special educational needs issues. Representations on the closure of special schools are not recorded separately.

Mr. Sanders: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families (1) what funding he plans to provide to local authorities to enable them to implement the speech, language and communication needs action plan; [250434]

(2) which local authorities have been selected as local area pathfinders under the speech, language and communication needs action plan. [250435]

Sarah McCarthy-Fry: Local authorities already have substantial funding to support children with special educational needs (SEN), including SLCN. Local authorities’ planned expenditure to support children with SEN—including speech, language and communication needs (SLCN)—is approximately £5.1 billion in 2008-09 (up from £2.1 billion in 2001-02). The pathfinder programme announced in “Better Communication”, the SLCN action plan published in December 2008, will demonstrate how local authorities and primary care trusts can prioritise and commission services for children with SLCN more efficiently and effectively within existing overall resources.

Details of how we will select the pathfinders and details of the funding available will be announced in due course.

Mr. Pope: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what the cost to local authorities was of residential school placements for children with statements of special educational needs in England in the last year for which figures are available. [250572]

Sarah McCarthy-Fry: The requested information is not collected centrally by the Department. However, during the 2008-09 financial year local authorities in England budgeted net expenditure of over £5.1 billion for the provision of education for children with special educational needs. It is not possible to identify how much of this £5.1 billion was for the total cost of residential school placements for children with statements of special educational needs as the data are not collected in that way.

Teachers: Recruitment

John Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what discussions Ofsted has had with the Training and Development
27 Jan 2009 : Column 500W
Agency on the relationship between teacher recruitment and systemic school failure in the last 12 months; and if he will make a statement. [247457]

Jim Knight: This is a matter for Ofsted. HM Chief Inspector, Christine Gilbert, has written to the hon. Member and a copy of her reply has been placed in both Libraries.

Letter from Christine Gilbert, dated 19 January 2009:

Young Offender Institutions: Education

Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families which young offender institutions have been found by inspectors to be providing too narrow a curriculum; and what steps he is taking to remedy the issue. [242006]

Beverley Hughes: Inspection reports on individual young offender institutions (YOIs) are public documents and available on-line and contain specific assessments of the education provision. The annual report of Her Majesty's Chief Inspector of Education, Children's Services and Skills 2007/08 reported that the range of vocational provision for children and young people in secure settings is often too narrow. However, the current re-tendering process for the Offender Learning and Skills Service contracts for the provision of education and training in YOIs has set clear requirements for the core curriculum in YOIs. We also published our plans to improve education and training in custody within the Youth Crime Action Plan (July 2008). This included a commitment to place local authorities in the lead for securing education in juvenile custody, and this is scheduled to form part of the forthcoming Children, Skills and Learning Bill. The aim is to ensure education in custody meets young peoples’ personal needs and so far as is practical matches that available for children and young people in the mainstream education system.


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