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Annette Brooke: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families pursuant to the answer of 3 February 2009, Official Report, column 1062W, on children: daycare, how much his Department is spending on (a) increasing awareness of the ban on physical punishment of children in childcare settings and (b) making parenting classes more widely available in 2008-09. 
Beverley Hughes: Under the Childcare Act 2006 local authorities are responsible for supporting the training needs of early years providers, and the Department for Children, Schools and Families is providing £440 million to local authorities over the period 2008-11 within the Outcomes, Quality and Inclusion block of the Sure Start, Early Years and Childcare Grant to help them fulfil this responsibility. Local authorities have discretion to spend this funding in line with their own particular needs and circumstances, to ensure that the specific training needs of early years staff in each area are met. Initial training and continuing professional development courses for child care practitioners include coverage of behaviour management and child protection issues. This may include training to increase awareness of the ban on physical punishment in child care settings. In addition the DCSF spent £7.5 million each year from 2006 to 2009 to support specific Early Years Foundation Stage training on effective practice without the use of physical punishment.
The Department is providing £8.67 million in 2008-09 for the National Academy for Parenting Practitioners to deliver a combination of research and training to support and develop the parenting workforce. We expect this to bring about a significant change in the supply and quality of the parenting support offered to parents, including increased availability of parenting classes.
Mrs. Maria Miller: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what assessment the Secretary of State has made of the effect of the judgment in Wright v . Secretary of State for Health on the implementation of the provisions of the Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006 which relate to children. 
Beverley Hughes: After careful consideration of the House of Lords judgment in Wright, the Government remain satisfied that the Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups (SVG) Act 2006 is compatible with human rights and in particular with Articles 6 and 8 of the ECHR. The scheme under the SVG Act does not include the feature of provisional listing, which was the focus of the challenge in the Wright case. In particular, whenever the ISA is exercising its discretion to place someone on a barred list, including under the SVG Act 2006 (Transitory Provisions Order) 2009 (SI 2009/12), which came into force on 20 January 2009, it must first invite their representations and also must send the individual the information on which it intends to rely. This is provided for in paragraphs 3(2), 5(2), 9(2), 11(2) and 16(1) of Schedule 3 to the Act. It would only be where a person had committed an offence which, by its nature, indicated that they posed an immediate risk of harm to the vulnerable (prescribed in the Safeguarding Vulnerable Groups Act 2006 (Prescribed Criteria and Miscellaneous Provisions) Regulations 2009, S.I. 2009/37) that they would be barred before being given the right to make representations. This is provided for in paragraphs 1,2,7 and 8 of Schedule 3 to the Act (the offences prescribed under paragraph 1 include the rape of a child, for example). The judgment in Wright acknowledged that an ex parte procedure could be justified in such circumstances.
Mr. Stephen O'Brien: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what systems he has put in place to ensure that protection for vulnerable children is maintained during the transfer of functions to unitary authorities in (a) Cheshire and (b) elsewhere in England. 
Beverley Hughes: It is for the new local authorities in Cheshire and Bedfordshire to ensure that they deliver effective services for children, young people and families. The Government have always made clear that it is crucial that the transition to the new local authority structures should avoid disruption to children's services, including child protection services in particular. Specialist safeguarding advisers in the relevant Government Offices have been closely involved in monitoring and supporting the process of transition in both areas. Ofsted's recent Annual Performance Assessments for Cheshire and Bedfordshire both conclude that the transition process is progressing well.
Tim Loughton: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families pursuant to the answer of 10 February 2009, Official Report, column 1950W, on children: protection, if he will provide a breakdown of the figures by local authority area. 
Beverley Hughes [holding answer 25 February 2009]: Outturn expenditure on children's social care for 2004-05 to 2007-08 by local authority are set out in the tables headed Personal Social Services Expenditure and Unit Costs available on the following website:
Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families how many and what proportion of infant school children are taught in classes of (a) 15, (b) 20, (c) 25, (d) 30 and (e) 35 children or less; and if he will make a statement. 
|Primary and all age academies( 1) : All Key Stage 1 classes( 2) , p ercentage of pupils by size of class( 3) , as at January 2008 , England|
|Class size of:||Number of pupils||Percentage of pupils( 4,5)|
|(1) Includes LA maintained primary schools and all age academies.|
(2) Includes reception classes and classes taught by more than one teacher.
(3) Based on size of class as taught during a single selected period in each school on the day of the census in January.
(4) The percentage of pupils taught in classes of this size, based on the size of class during a single selected period in each school days of the census in January.
(5) Includes all pupils taught in class regardless of type of pupils registration.
Mrs. Laing: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what the cost of maintaining the databases owned and managed by (a) his Department and (b) its agencies was in (i) 2006, (ii) 2007 and (iii) 2008. 
Jim Knight: The information as requested is not readily available centrally within the Department for Children, Schools and Families. To respond fully would involve an extensive internal and external information collection exercise which would exceed the recommended disproportionate cost threshold.
Mr. Frank Field: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families how many language translators are employed in his Department's non-ministerial department; and what the cost of translating services provided by such people was in the latest period for which information is available. 
Jim Knight: Ofsted is the only non-ministerial department linked to this Department. HM Chief Inspector, Christine Gilbert, has written to my hon. Friend and a copy of her reply has been placed in the Libraries.
Your recent parliamentary question has been passed to me, as Her Majesty's Chief Inspector, for a response.
Ofsted carries out all translation using translation agencies. From 1 April 2008 until 17 February 2009, Ofsted has spent £5,310.59 plus VAT (£6,171.47 total) on translation services.
A copy of this reply has been sent to right hon. Jim Knight MP, Minister of State for Schools and Learners, and will be placed in the Library of both Houses.
Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families how many claims for education maintenance allowance received for the 2008-09 academic year were not in payment on 31 January 2009; and if he will make a statement. 
Jim Knight: This is a matter for the Learning and Skills Council (LSC) who operate the education maintenance allowance (EMA) for the Department for Children, Schools and Families (DCSF). Mark Haysom the LSC's chief executive, will write to the hon. Member for Yeovil (Mr. Laws) with the information requested and a copy of his reply will be placed in the Libraries.
Mr. Hunt: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what percentage of (a) primary and (b) secondary school pupils (i) performed music to a live audience, (ii) visited an historic building, (iii) took part in a theatre production, (iv) visited a library and (v) visited an art gallery as a school activity in each of the last three years. 
Sarah McCarthy-Fry: Schools offer many arts and cultural activities in the curriculum, for example, in music, art and drama, and there is much cultural activity taking place outside school and beyond the school day. We do not collect year on year data recording childrens involvement with the activities listed in the question as school activities.
The Childrens Plan made a commitment to ensure that all children and young people, no matter where they live and or what their background, can get involved in high quality cultural activities in and out of school, working towards a five-hour offer to match that for sport. The 10 Find Your Talent pathfinders that started in September 2008 will, over the next three years, work towards a position where that commitment is a reality.
Tim Loughton: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families (1) how many children from Northern Ireland were fostered in (a) England, (b) Scotland and (c) Wales in each year since 1997; 
Beverley Hughes: Information on the number of children from Northern Ireland, Wales or Scotland who were fostered in either England, Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland is not collected centrally by the Department.
There were 59,500 looked after children in England at 31 March 2008, of whom 42,300 were in foster placements. In total 540 of the children looked after by English local authorities at 31 March 2008 were in placements outside England and 370 of these were in foster placements, this includes those in placements in Northern Ireland. These figures exclude those children looked after under an agreed series of short-term placements.
Jim Knight: There were 1,730 maintained schools with GCE A-level candidates that were published in the 2007 School and College Achievement and Attainment Tables. Of these, 115 (7 per cent.) did not enter any pupils for an A-level in biology, 96 (6 per cent.) did not enter any pupils for an A-level in mathematics, 187 (11 per cent.) did not enter any pupils for an A-level in chemistry and 247 (14 per cent.) did not enter any pupils for an A-level in physics in 2006/07.
The responsibility for ensuring that rigorous standards are maintained over time in A-levels rests with the independent regulator, Ofqual. A-levels are internationally respected qualifications and claims that they have got easier have been investigated and refuted on numerous occasions. A-levels have recently been
strengthened further to include additional stretch and challenge for the brightest students and the introduction of an A* grade.
The Government have made no assessment of the merits of a recalibration of A-levels, which would only be appropriate if we were to change the purpose of the qualification. We have already announced that we will review A-levels in 2013, and can consider any such issues, in consultation with Ofqual, at that time.
Michael Gove: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what proportion of pupils gained five A* to C grade GCSEs including English and mathematics but excluding equivalents, media studies GCSE, psychology GCSE, and PE GCSE. 
Jim Knight: The number of pupils attaining five or more A* to C grade GCSEs including English and Mathematics, but excluding all equivalents and the subjects of media studies, psychology and physical education, was 295,423 in 2008. This corresponds to 45.2 per cent. of pupils at the end of Key Stage 4.
Mr. Gibb: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families with reference to the answer of 7 October 2008, Official Report, columns 590-1W, on General Certificate of Secondary Education, if he will give an itemised breakdown of the estimated cost of providing the information requested. 
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