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Standard Spending Assessments

Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what steps she is taking to reduce the differentials in levels of funding support provided through SSAs. [1866]

Mr. Timms [holding answer 4 July 2001]: The Government are currently undertaking a review of local government funding. As part of that wider review we have set up two working groups, with local government and schools partners, to develop proposals for a new LEA and school funding system. We aim to create a simpler and more transparent formula for distributing education funding to authorities that reflects fairly, on the basis of up to date evidence, the needs of authorities in different parts of the country.

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Education Maintenance Allowances

Mrs. May: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills (1) what analysis her Department has made of the impact of education maintenance allowances on staying-on rates post-16; [1956]

Mr. Ivan Lewis [holding answer 3 July 2001]: The education maintenance allowance pilots now cover around 30 per cent. of the country and have reached over 80,000 young people. An extensive three-year evaluation programme is under way, with both quantitative and qualitative research, including interviews with 20,000 young people. We published the first evaluation reports in March.

Results from the first year of the pilot have shown an increased participation among the target group of 5 percentage points. Early anecdotal evidence suggests that the young people who receive an EMA appreciate the independence this affords them and they benefit from the experience of managing their own money.

Exam Marking

Mrs. May: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how many people were employed in (a) 1999 and (b) 2000 to mark A-level papers; and how many people have been employed this year to mark (i) AS-levels and (ii) A-levels. [1961]

Mr. Ivan Lewis [holding answer 3 July 2001]: The number of examiners recruited by the awarding bodies at advanced level over the period in question was as follows:


2001 is a special year, as it is the last year for the old style A-levels and the first year for the new AS examinations. This transitional situation is reflected in an increase in the number of examiners recruited, the total comprising 7,000 for A-levels and 7,000 for AS-levels.

Drug Abuse

Mr. Peter Ainsworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what plans she has to enable schools to fund more programmes to tackle drug abuse. [2088]

Mr. Ivan Lewis: Funding to support drug, alcohol and tobacco education will rise from £14.5 million in 2001–02 to £15.5 million in 2002–03 and £17.5 million in 2003–04. This funding will improve the quality and coverage of drug education programmes in schools, provide funding for every school to have access to an LEA drug adviser and will fund drug education training for teachers and Connexions advisers. In addition to this specific funding, schools will receive £15 million in 2001–02 to support personal, social and health education and citizenship, which they can choose to spend on programmes to tackle drug misuse.

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Mr. Hoyle: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills for what reason newly qualified teachers (a) who trained and qualified in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland and (b) from countries within the European Economic Area are allowed to teach in maintained schools in England without having to sit the national numeracy test. [2141]

Mr. Timms: The requirements for achieving Qualified Teacher Status (QTS) in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland do not include passing a national numeracy test. That is a matter for the devolved Administrations of those countries to decide.

Teachers who are nationals of other countries within the European Economic Area (EEA) are entitled to be awarded QTS in this country on the basis of teaching qualification status recognised elsewhere in the EEA. Similarly, those teachers would not have to pass a numeracy test to teach in this country.

School Sport

Mr. Hoyle: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills (1) if she will make a statement on the amount of time dedicated to sport in schools each week; [2142]

Mr. Timms: The National Curriculum for Physical Education has an aspiration that all pupils should receive two hours of physical activity a week. Officials are considering with the Department for Culture, Media and Sport how we could assist schools in delivering a two-hour entitlement to all children, as set out by the Prime Minister on 11 January this year. This commitment was included in our Green Paper, "Building on Success". We are also consulting with Ofsted, the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority, PE associations and teachers. The QCA have published examples of best practice on their

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website, from schools that are already providing two hours or more PE and school sport. School sports co-ordinators, of which there will be 1,000 by 2004, are already working with families of schools linked to specialist sports colleges to help schools meet this entitlement.

Bownham Park School, Stroud

Mr. Laurence Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what discussions Ministers from her Department have had with the adjudicator in connection with the timing of the announcement about closing Bownham Park School, Stroud; and if she will make a statement. [2226]

Mr. Timms [holding answer 4 July 2001]: Ministers from this Department have had no discussions with the adjudicator in connection with the timing of the announcement about closing Bownham Park School. Ministers were informed on 6 June that the Office of the Schools Adjudicator would be announcing its decision on 8 June. The Office of the Schools Adjudicator is independent of the Department and Ministers have no role to play in what decision the adjudicator makes on a particular proposal.

Community Languages

Dr. Starkey: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills, pursuant to her answer of 2 July 2001, Official Report, column 36W, on community languages, if she will list those specialist language colleges which offer (a) Urdu, (b) Bengali, (c) Gujarati, (d) Hindi and (e) Chinese. [2356]

Mr. Timms: I understand that of the 99 specialist language colleges in operation as of September 2000, 46 offer one or more of the languages in question to an accredited level: Urdu (17), Bengali (10), Gujarati (7), Hindi (1) and Chinese (31). The names of the 46 schools are given in the following table.

1Arden schoolSolihullYes
2Ashcombe schoolSurreyYes
3Bishop Heber county high schoolCheshireYes
4Bournemouth schoolBournemouthYes
5Bullers Wood schoolLondon borough of BromleyYes
6Chatham grammar school for boysMedwayYes
7Clevedon community schoolNorth SomersetYes
8Cranford community high schoolLondon borough of HounslowYesYesYesYes
9Dallam schoolCumbria
10Dartford grammar schoolKentYesYes
11Elizabeth Garrett Anderson schoolLondon borough of IslingtonYes
12Gosforth high schoolNewcastle upon TyneYes
13Haydon schoolHillingdonYesYes
14Hele's schoolCity of PlymouthYes
15Hockerill Anglo-European schoolHertfordshireYes
16Hummersknott schoolDarlingtonYes
17Ian Ramsey CE schoolStockton on TeesYes
18Judgemeadow community collegeCity of LeicesterYes
19Katharine Lady Berkeleys schoolGloucesterYes
20King Edward VII schoolSheffieldYes
21Kingsthorpe community schoolNorthamptonshireYesYesYesYes
22Levenshulme high schoolManchesterYesYesYes
23Little Lever schoolBoltonYesYes
24 Lord Grey schoolMilton KeynesYesYes
25Lymm high schoolWarringtonYes
26Millais schoolWest SussexYes
27Monkseaton community high schoolNorth TynesideYesYes
28Montgomery high schoolBlackpoolYes
29Moseley schoolBirminghamYesYes
30Northgate high schoolSuffolkYes
31Oulder Hill community schoolRochdaleYes
32Prince Henrys grammar schoolLeedsYes
33Queen Mary's high schoolWalsallYesYesYes
34Royal grammar schoolBuckinghamshireYes
35Shireland language schoolSandwellYesYes
36Sir Thomas Rich's schoolGloucestershireYes
37St. Edward's collegeLiverpoolYes
38Tavistock collegeDevonYes
39The Harwich schoolEssexYes
40The Holy Family schoolBradfordYes
41The John Bentley schoolWiltshireYes
42The Sir John Cass's Foundation and Red Coat CE schoolTower HamletYesYesYes
43Tile Hill Wood schoolCoventryYes
44William Ellis schoolLondon borough of CamdenYesYes
45Wolverhampton Girls' high schoolWolverhamptonYesYes
46Woodbridge high schoolRedbridgeYesYes

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