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22 Oct 2007 : Column 108W—continued


Mr. Ruffley: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what the average (a) middle school and (b) upper school class size was in each constituency in the East of England in each year since 1997. [159218]

Jim Knight: The available information could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

Curriculum: Citizenship

David Mundell: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what discussions he has had with (a) the Secretary of State for Scotland and (b) his counterpart in the Scottish Executive on delivery of a UK-wide (i) curriculum for citizenship education and (ii) “Who do we think we are?” week in schools. [158772]

Jim Knight: DCSF Ministers meet regularly with Scottish counterparts to discuss a range of issues. There have been discussions at official level about the Citizenship curriculum. Plans for the “Who do we think we are?” week are in their initial stages.

Departments: Public Participation

Mrs. May: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families how many citizens' juries have been arranged by his Department since June 2007; which organisations were commissioned to conduct each citizens' jury; and what the estimated cost is of each exercise. [159497]

Kevin Brennan: The Department for Children, Schools and Families has conducted five citizens’ juries since June 2007. Opinion Leader Research were appointed to facilitate the events which took the form of deliberative debates. The cost for the first jury in Bristol was £57,047 including VAT. The total costs for the four deliberative debates in London, Leeds, Portsmouth and Birmingham was £467,704 including VAT.

Education: Finance

Mr. Lancaster: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families for what reasons the national basic need allocation of £400 million has not been increased since 1995. [159582]

Jim Knight [holding answer 19 October 2007]: The national basic need allocation should be looked at in the context of our total schools capital spending programmes. This year, capital investment has risen to £6.4 billion, and is planned to rise to £8.2 billion by 2010-11. Further information on capital allocations for the period 2008-09 to 2010-11 is set out in my statement of 10 October.


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The Basic Need programme is not ring-fenced, and forms part of local authorities’ single capital pot. Local authorities can add their basic need allocation to the other devolved allocations mentioned in my statement, including modernisation. They will also usually have their own resources which can be used to both upgrade existing facilities and to expand where necessary.

In addition to Basic Need, Building Schools for the Future, the Academies programme, Primary Capital programme and the Learning and Skills Council’s 16-19 fund, also support new pupil places.

This balance of programmes will enable local authorities to improve schools across the country and provide extra places where required.

Education: Milton Keynes

Mr. Lancaster: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families if he will publish the minutes of the meeting held between the Secretary of
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State for Education and the delegation from Milton Keynes held on 19 June. [159581]

Jim Knight: The Secretary of State for Education and Skills met a delegation from Milton Keynes on 19 June to discuss school funding. No formal minutes of the meeting exist.

Mr. Lancaster: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families what the basic need capital allocations are for Milton Keynes Unitary Authority for (a) 2008-09 and (b) 2010-11; and what they were for the previous two allocation periods. [159583]

Jim Knight [holding answer 19 October 2007]: The basic need capital allocations for Milton Keynes unitary authority for the periods 2003-04 to 2010-11 are set out in the following table, together with total capital allocations to the local authority and its schools for this period.

£ million
Description 2003-04 2004-05 2005-06 2006-07 2007-08 2008-09 2009-10 2010-11

Basic need

12.6

5.8

17.2

31.4

32.6

10.1

10.1

10.1

Other allocations

16.5

33.3

13.6

21.1

9.8

9.9

13.6

17.4

Total

29.1

39.1

30.8

52.5

42.4

20.0

23.7

27.5


Total allocations for the period 2008-09 to 2010-11 also include the new primary programme, the new extended schools programme, and the ICT harnessing technology grant.

The basic need budget is allocated to local authorities on the basis of the relative need of each. Relative need is calculated on the number of existing pupil numbers and on the forecast increase in pupil numbers as supplied by local authorities. The exceptionally large allocation of basic need in 2006-07 and 2007-08 was due to (a) forecast growth figures submitted by Milton Keynes and (b) relatively low demand in this period from other local authorities.

Milton Keynes will have the opportunity to bid for more basic need in the spending review period 2008-09 to 2010-11 through the basic need safety valve mechanism, if it can demonstrate exceptional growth. It can also apply for funding for new sixth-form places to the Learning and Skills Council. It should also supplement departmental allocations from sources available locally such as section 106 planning gain capital receipts, and prudential borrowing.

Heartsease School Norwich

Dr. Gibson: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families how much has been spent on consultation exercises carried out by (a) Cambridge Education Associates and (b) Norfolk county council on the Heartsease school closure. [159093]

Jim Knight: The Department does not collect information on expenditure incurred by local authorities during the consultation or publication stages of proposals for changes to local school organisation, including school closures.

The consultation conducted by Cambridge Education on behalf of the Department was not on the Heartsease school closure, but on the proposals for a new academy. The amount expended on this non statutory consultation was £43,363 plus VAT. This formed part of the overall budget for the feasibility study, details of which were provided in answer to the hon. Member's previous question, No.139086.

Nursery Schools

Mrs. Maria Miller: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families pursuant to the written ministerial statement of 25 June 2007, Official Report, columns 1-5WS, on schools, early years and 14-16 funding (2008-2011), for what reasons local authority assessments of the cost of delivering free early years entitlement in the private and voluntary sector will be carried out; what use will be made of the results of these assessments; and when he plans to publish the results. [159587]

Beverley Hughes: Local authority assessments on the cost of delivering the free early years entitlement will be carried out as part of a series of changes to how local authorities fund the free entitlement between now and 2011. We expect each local authority to analyse the cost of delivering the free entitlement in private, voluntary and independent settings, in the run-up to agreeing local budgets for April 2008 onwards. Schools Forums will need to consider this information as part of their budget process. It is therefore for local authorities to decide if they wish to publish the information.

Roads: Safety

Mark Hunter: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families (1) what recent
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representations he has received on introducing road safety as a compulsory part of the national curriculum; and whether this issue is being reviewed; [159516]

(2) whether there are any plans to introduce road safety as a compulsory part of the national curriculum; and if he will make a statement. [159517]

Jim Knight [holding answer 19 October 2007]: The Department has in 2007 received no specific representations on introducing road safety as a compulsory part of the National Curriculum.

The secondary school curriculum has been reviewed this year by the Qualifications and Curriculum Authority. The revised curriculum, to be phased in from September 2008, includes new programmes of study for Personal Social Health and Economic Education. There is scope to cover road safety through the key concept of risk where pupils are taught that the

The Department’s “Safety Education: Guidance for schools” advises how schools can deliver safety education, which would include road safety education, within the framework for Personal, Social and Health Education. Beyond that it also highlights how other parts of the national curriculum can be used to develop children’s ability to assess and control risks to themselves and others.

In view of the curriculum review, we do not plan to review our position on making road safety a compulsory part of the national curriculum. We will continue to work with the Department for Transport and others on ways to support the effective delivery of safety education within the curriculum.

Runaway Children: Greater London

Sarah Teather: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families how many children ran away from their homes in each London borough in each of the last 10 years; and how many have subsequently returned home. [158818]

Kevin Brennan: Statistics on the numbers of all children who are reported as missing are not collected centrally. The Children's Society estimates that each year in the UK 100,000 children run away or are forced to leave home to escape problems.

A new national indicator on young people who have run away from their homes or care overnight is included in the national indicators that will underpin the new performance framework for local authorities. This was published on 11 October 2007.

We are considering a number of different options to gather data on children and young people who run away in connection with the new indicator, working closely with the Home Office, the police, local authorities and other relevant agencies.

The Home Office has been working with the Association of Chief Police Officers and Missing People (the former National Missing Persons Helpline) to establish joint working arrangements to improve the recording, sharing and exchange of information, to improve the way in which missing persons are dealt with, and to inform our understanding of the problem
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in order to develop strategies to address it. Part of this work includes establishment of a comprehensive national police database of missing and unidentified people reported either to the police or Missing People, which the National Policing Improvement Agency is taking forward.

Schools: Shropshire

Daniel Kawczynski: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families how much was allocated to schools in 2006 in Shropshire Local Education Authority area. [159165]

Jim Knight: The Normanton area falls within the Wakefield local authority and the information supplied is the level of funding which applies to all of Wakefield. At the start of the 2006-07 financial year, Wakefield local authority allocated £183 million (£182,947,594) of revenue funding to its maintained nursery, primary, secondary and special schools. This comprises of the Total Budget Share plus any School Standards Grant, School Development Grant, Other Standards Fund Allocation, Devolved School Meals Grant, Targeted School Meals Grant, Threshold and Performance Pay and Support for Schools in Financial Difficulty allocated to the school at the start of the 2006-07 financial year. This does not include any capital funding allocated to schools.

Schools: Transport

Mark Hunter: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families who is responsible for monitoring the implementation of school travel plans; and if he will make a statement. [159514]

Jim Knight [holding answer 19 October 2007]: Since 2003, the Department for Children, Schools and Families (DCSF) and the Department for Transport (DfT) have worked together on the ‘Travelling to School Initiative’ (TTSI). The initiative has sought to increase the proportion of pupils travelling to school sustainably (walking, cycling, on the bus) by helping schools to develop School Travel Plans identifying what can be done in each school, for each pupil, to support sustainable travel.

Once completed. School Travel Plans are quality assured against criteria approved by the TTSI Project Board. The board monitor the quality and implementation of School Travel Plans, utilising a network of Regional and School Travel Advisers. DCSF and DfT Jointly fund local authority based School Travel Advisers who help schools carry out surveys and prepare plans.

Mark Hunter: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families how many and what percentage of schools have school travel plans in place. [159515]

Jim Knight [holding answer 19 October 2007]: At 31 March 2007, 14,063 schools (56 per cent.) had approved school travel plans in place.


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Sports: Training

Mr. Hunt: To ask the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families how many specialist sports colleges have been established. [159702]

Jim Knight: There are 435 specialist sports colleges. 370 schools with sport as its main specialism, 25 schools with sport as part of a combined specialism, 26 schools which have chosen sport as a second specialism, and a further 14 academies which have sport as their focus.


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Justice

Deaths in Custody

Mr. Burrowes: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many juveniles died in custody as a result of (a) natural causes, (b) self-harm, (c) accidents and (d) violence committed by a third party in each year since 1997. [158957]

Mr. Hanson: Information in respect of deaths in prison custody of prisoners under the age of 18 is provided in the following table:

Juvenile deaths in custody (all male)
Classification 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006

Other non- natural (inc. accidents)

1

1

Homicide

1

Natural causes

Self-inflicted

1

3

2

3

3

2

1

2


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