Previous Section Index Home Page

19 Sept 2002 : Column 102W—continued

Grammar Schools

Mr. Brady: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills, pursuant to her oral statement of 16 July 2002, if successful grammar schools will be eligible to take over failing schools under the proposed arrangements. [71555]

Mr. Miliband [holding answer 19 July 2002]: In the document Education and Skills: Investment for Reform, which we published on the day of my right hon. Friend's statement to the House on 16 July, we made clear that we would be looking at a range of ways of encouraging federations and partnerships between weaker and more successful schools, including a successful school taking over a failing school. We shall provide more details on these proposals later in the year. There is no reason why successful grammar schools should not be involved in forms of federation and partnership consistent with their grammar school status, where that is appropriate to local needs and circumstances. But in doing this we will remain true to our principle of no extension of selection by ability.

Demountable Classrooms

Bob Russell: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how much additional funding is to be allocated to Essex County Council to replace demountable classrooms in the Colchester constituency with permanent accommodation. [71480]

Mr. Ivan Lewis [holding answer 19 July 2002]: We do not hold information in the form requested. Most capital support is allocated to Local Education Authorities and schools by needs related formulae. It is for Essex Local Education Authority (LEA) and its schools to decide how their capital allocations are invested, as part of the development of their local Asset Management Plan. To date, Essex LEA, and its schools, have already been allocated support for £107 million of capital works in total over 2002–03 and 2003–04.

Citizenship Curriculum

Bob Russell: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills if the Citizenship Curriculum will include (a) knowledge of the flags and patron saints of the countries of the United Kingdom and (b) teaching the words of the national anthem. [71481]

Stephen Twigg [holding answer 19 July 2002]: The flags, patron saints and the national anthem of the United Kingdom are not a separate element of the Citizenship National Curriculum. However, understanding the origins and implications of the diverse national, regional, religious and ethnic identities in the United Kingdom is an important part of Citizenship which becomes part of the statutory National Curriculum for 11–16 year olds in September 2002. In this context pupils will have the opportunity to explore the unique qualities that are part of the shared identities of the countries of the United

19 Sept 2002 : Column 103W

Kingdom. They may also consider the political, religious, social and constitutional systems that affect their lives and communities.

Departmental Staff

Ms Shipley: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how many registered (a) town planners, (b) landscape designers, (c) chartered surveyors and (d) architects work in her Department. [71856]

Stephen Twigg: Within the Department for Education and Skills there are 5 registered chartered surveyors and 10 registered architects. Currently there are no town planners or landscape designers working in the Department.

Music Lessons

David Taylor: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills (1) what assessment has been made of access to free music lessons by school pupils from low-income families in North-West Leicestershire; [71924] (2) what methods and procedures are in place to judge the success of the Music Standards Fund in increasing access to free music lessons for musicians in (a) North-West Leicestershire and (b) English schools; [71923] (3) what assessment has been made of the take up of free music lessons by school pupils from low-income families in England. [71925]

19 Sept 2002 : Column 104W

Stephen Twigg: The Government's White Paper Schools: achieving success contained the pledge that over time, all primary school pupils who wanted to should have the opportunity to learn a musical instrument. The Music Standards Fund was introduced in 1999 to protect and expand LEA Music Services. Between 1999–2000 and 2003–04 total funding of £270 million has been made available to Music Services across England via the Music Standards Fund. LEAs may spend Music Standards Fund in any way which enhances the opportunities for pupils to access musical education of high quality. It is not intended to provide music lessons for musicians.

There is no requirement for LEAs to inform the Department whether Music Standards Fund has been used to increase access to and take up of music lessons for pupils from low-income families. It is for LEAs and individual schools to decide whether to operate a charging policy for instrumental music lessons provided outside of the National Curriculum, and we do not currently hold data on this.

Public Consultations

Mr. Andrew Turner: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what public consultations have been commenced by her Department since 1 April; and what the (a) closing date and (b) website address of each were. [72074]

Stephen Twigg: The information you have requested appears in the following table. The website address for my Department's consultations is

Title of ConsultationStart DateEnd Date
Proposals to introduce a mandatory requirement for first-time headteachers to hold the National Professional Qualification for Headship (NPQH)22/04/200228/06/2002
School Teachers' Review Body's report on teacher workload08/05/200203/07/2002
Electronic Communications in Education: an Order under the Electronic Communications Act 200008/05/200206/09/2002
Performance Pay Progression: Reconsultation on Revised Special Grant Report14/05/200213/06/2002
Developing Early Intervention/Support Services for Deaf Children and their Families28/05/200223/09/2002
Together From The Start—Practical guidance for professionals working with disabled children (birth to 2) and their families28/05/200223/09/2002
Department for Education and Skills—Race Equality Scheme31/05/200230/08/2002
Supporting the cost of home-based childcare07/06/200230/08/2002
Proposal for a Directive of the European Parliament and of the Council on the Recognition of Professional Qualifications01/07/200230/09/2002

School Sports

Mr. Sheerman: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills whether she plans to make sport in schools part of the everyday curriculum. [71932]

Stephen Twigg: Physical Education (PE) remains a compulsory subject within the National Curriculum at all Key Stages. Our Public Service Agreement target, announced on 15 July, is that by 2006 we will have enhanced the take-up of PE and sporting opportunities by 5 to 16 year olds by increasing the percentage of pupils in schools who spend a minimum of two hours each week on high quality PE and school sport within and beyond the curriculum to 75 per cent.

It is for individual schools and their governing bodies to decide how they utilise their timetable to cover the National Curriculum and there is no reason why schools cannot choose to provide PE and sport every day, if this best meets the learning needs of the pupils.

Capital Investment (Schools)

Ms Shipley: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what the level of capital investment is for 2003–04 to 2005–06 following the comprehensive spending review for (a) new or substantially refurbished primary schools, (b) new or substantially refurbished secondary schools, (c) further education and (d) higher education. [71859]

Mr. Miliband: Capital investment in education and skills will rise from £1 billion a year in 1997–98 to £7 billion a year by 2005–06, of which £1.2 billion will be through the private finance initiative. My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State will announce her decisions about how that capital is to be used later in the year when she has considered priorities in the round.

SEN Children

Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what plans her Department has to

19 Sept 2002 : Column 105W

introduce a star rating system to award (a) local education authorities, (b) schools and (c) colleges who are putting into practice good systems to support inclusion of SEN children; what plans her Department has to name (i) local education authorities, (ii) schools and (iii) colleges who are failing or rejecting SEN children and adults; and if she will make a statement. [72028]

Stephen Twigg: My right hon. Friend has no such plans. However, her Department does take a close interest in local education authority, school and college systems to support inclusion, particularly through OFSTED inspection and post-inspection action planning. The Department is also considering how effective practice on inclusion might best be reflected in performance indicators used in the Comprehensive Performance Assessment of local authorities.

Next Section Index Home Page