Older Workers

David Simpson: To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office how many people aged over (a) 55 and (b) 60 years have been recruited to work in the Prime Minister's Office in 2011-12; and what proportion of such staff were new staff. [173111]

4 Nov 2013 : Column 89W

Mr Maude: The Prime Minister's Office is an integral part of the Cabinet Office. It is my Department's policy that all selection should be based on merit.

In 2011-12, 293 staff were recruited to my Department. Five or fewer civil servants were aged over 55, and none over 60.

In 2012-13, 340 staff were recruited to my Department. Seven civil servants were aged over 55, and five or fewer were aged over 60. Five or fewer of those aged over 55 and over 60 were new to the civil service.

Perinatal Mortality

Tim Loughton: To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office how many children have been stillborn in each of the last 10 years. [173847]

Mr Hurd: The information requested falls within the responsibility of the UK Statistics Authority. I have asked the authority to reply.

Letter from Glen Watson, dated November 2013:

As Director General for the Office for National Statistics, I have been asked to reply to your recent question to the Secretary of State for Health asking how many children have been stillborn in each of the last ten years [173847].

The table shows the number of stillbirths in England and Wales for 2003 to 2012.

Number of stillbirths 2003-12. England and Wales
 Stillbirths

2012

3,558

2011

3,811

2010

3,714

2009

3,688

2008

3,617

2007

3,598

2006

3,602

.2005

3,483

2004

3,686

2003

3,612

Source: Office for National Statistics

For more information, stillbirth data are published annually on the ONS website at:

http://www.ons.gov.uk/ons/rel/vsob1/characteristics-of-birth-1--england-and-wales/index.html

Poverty

Chris Ruane: To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office if the term poverty is still being used by his Department for the purpose of statistics; and when a decision to disuse this phrase was taken. [173699]

Mr Hurd: The Government use a range of measures to quantify poverty, deprivation and social exclusion.

Public Appointments

Philip Davies: To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office who was (a) invited to and (b) attended the public appointments seminar on 28 October 2013; and what the total cost was of the whole event. [173384]

Mr Maude: The public appointments seminar scheduled for 28 October had to be postponed following last Monday's storm. It will be rescheduled in due course.

4 Nov 2013 : Column 90W

UK Membership of EU

Mr Thomas: To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office if he will make an assessment of the costs and benefits of a decision for the UK to leave the EU in his Department's area of responsibility; and if he will make a statement. [173735]

Mr Maude: I refer the hon. Member to the reply given by the Minister for Europe, my right hon. Friend the Member for Aylesbury (Mr Lidington), to the hon. Member for Wolverhampton North East (Emma Reynolds) on 29 January 2013, Official Report, column 709W.

Work and Pensions

Attendance Allowance

Liz Kendall: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many recipients of attendance allowance have total income or assets under £123,000 (a) nationally and (b) by region. [173581]

Mike Penning: The information requested is not available. Attendance allowance is not a means-tested benefit. We have obtained the following estimates from the Family Resource Survey.

The survey data used to answer this question do not capture assets such as housing and vehicles; as such it has simply been answered where a family's income is below the specified threshold.

Table 1: Number of people in families with at least one member receiving attendance allowance and with less than £123,000 of gross family income, UK, 2011-12
 Number

2011-12

1,200,000

Notes: 1. These statistics are based on households below average income (HBAI) data sourced from the Family Resources Survey (FRS). 2. Gross incomes have been used to answer the question. This includes earnings from employment and self-employment, state support, income from occupational and private pensions, investment income and other sources. However, gross income does not take into account assets owned by the family. 3. All estimates are based on survey data and are therefore subject to a degree of uncertainty. Small differences, particularly at the bottom of the income distribution, should be treated with caution as these will be affected by sampling error and variability in non-response. 4. The reference period for HBAI figures is the financial year. 5. Population estimates are rounded to the nearest 100,000 individuals and percentages are rounded to the nearest 1%. Source: HBAI 2011-12
Table 2: Number of people in families with at least one member receiving attendance allowance and with less than £123,000 of gross family income, by region, 3 year average 2009-10 to 2011-12
Government regionNumber

North East

1

North West and Merseyside

200,000

Yorks and Humberside

100,000

East Midlands

100,000

West Midlands

100,000

East of England

100,000

London

100,000

South East

100,000

South West

100,000

Wales

100,000

4 Nov 2013 : Column 91W

Scotland

100,000

Northern Ireland

2

1 Data not available due to small sample sizes (less than 100). 2 Date not available due to estimate being less than 50,000. Notes: 1. These statistics are based on households below average income (HBAI) data sourced from the Family Resources Survey (FRS). 2. Gross incomes have been used to answer the question. This includes earnings from employment and self-employment, state support, income from occupational and private pensions, investment income and other sources. However, gross income does not take into account assets owned by the family. 3. All estimates are based on survey data and are therefore subject to a degree of uncertainty. Small differences, particularly at the bottom of the income distribution, should be treated with caution as these will be affected by sampling error and variability in non-response. 4. The reference period for HBAI figures is the financial year, 3 year average figures have been presented by region to overcome small sample size and volatility. 5. Population estimates are rounded to the nearest 100,000 individuals and percentages are rounded to the nearest 1%. Source: HBAI 2009-10 to 2011-12.

Employment and Support Allowance

Chris Ruane: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions pursuant to the answer of 24 October 2013, Official Report, column 261W (1) what proportion of the 4,109 employment and support allowance capability assessments subsequently went to appeal; [173426]

(2) what number and proportion of employment and support allowance decisions have been appealed in which the original assessment was (a) audio taped and (b) not audio taped; [173460]

(3) if he will place a copy of any leaflets or information pertaining to employment and support allowance claimants' right to ask for an audio tape of their work capability test in the Library; [173461]

(4) what assessment he has made of the use of audio-taping of employment and support allowance tests in reducing (a) the number of cases going to appeal and (b) the success rate of later appeals; [173462]

(5) in which month each request to audio tape a work capability assessment was made. [173712]

Mike Penning: The hon. Member for Vale of Clwyd (Chris Ruane) has asked five parliamentary questions relating to the audio recording of work capability assessments (WCAs) and I have taken the opportunity to reply to them collectively.

In answer to question 173461, I am placing a copy of the WCA AL1C form in the Library. The WCA AL1C form is sent to claimants when they are asked to arrange a face-to-face assessment and provides details about how they can ask for their face-to-face assessment to be audio recorded.

The AL1C form also provides a link to the gov.uk website where claimants can find more information on audio recording of face-to-face assessments, including some frequently asked questions. This website can be accessed here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/policies/simplifying-the-welfare-system-and-making-sure-work-pays/supporting-pages/improving-the-work-capability-assessment

4 Nov 2013 : Column 92W

In answer to question 173712, between September 2011 and September 2013 there have been 4,109 requests for an audio recorded face-to-face work capability assessment. We hold monthly data from January 2012 onwards and the following table shows the number of requests per month between January 2012 and September 2013.

2012
 Number

January

31

February

49

March

84

April

112

May

119

June

116

July

189

August

224

September

235

October

314

November

256

December

215

2013
 Number

January

271

February

323

March

275

April

292

May

263

June

232

July

188

August

130

September

153

Unfortunately we do not record whether or not the decision following an audio recorded face-to-face assessment has been appealed, therefore I am unable to provide the information requested in questions 173426,173460 and 173462.

Employment and Support Allowance: Brighton

Caroline Lucas: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions with reference to the answer of 12 October 2011, Official Report, column 428W, on employment and support allowance: Brighton, if he will update tables 1 and 2 with figures for the latest period available. [172208]

Mike Penning: The information requested is as follows.

Table 1: New claims for employment and support allowance (ESA)—Outcome of initial functional assessments that were completed in Brighton and Hove UA: Fit for Work, October 2008 to February 2013
 Fit for work1Percentage of all new ESA claims2

Brighton and Hove UA

3,500

27

1 Numbers have been rounded to the nearest hundred. Percentages are rounded to the nearest whole number. 2 Includes claims that are closed before assessment and those still in progress. Source: Data held by the Department for Work and Pensions, functional assessment data from Atos Healthcare.

4 Nov 2013 : Column 93W

Table 2: Completed appeals against Fit for Work (FFW) decisions for new ESA claims in Brighton and Hove UA: October 2008 to May 2012
 Appeals heard
 TotalDecision in favour of appellant% decision in favour of appellantDWP decision upheld% DWP decision upheld

Brighton and Hove UA

1,300

700

54

600

46

Notes: 1. Figures are for initial assessments only and numbers have been rounded to the nearest hundred (as a result, summing of rows may not give the totals shown). Percentages are rounded to the nearest whole number. 2. Data on appeals include ESA claims up to the end of May 2012 (the latest month where we have sufficient volumes of appeals heard to include in the publication) where the person claiming has been assessed to be fit for work, they subsequently appeal the Department's decision and the appeal has been heard by the Tribunals Service. 3. Due to the time it takes for appeals to be submitted to the Tribunals Service and heard, it is likely that there are more appeals that have not yet been heard. Therefore these figures should be treated as emerging findings rather than final at this stage. 4. The figure of 54% decisions in favour of the appellant is comparable to the figure provided in the previous PQ of 56%. The total appellant success rate at July 2013 is 37% so Brighton and Hove LA is above that figure. The rates will vary across the country due to various different factors including the characteristics of the claimant populations concerned. Source: Data held by the Department for Work and Pensions, functional assessment data from Atos Healthcare and appeals data from the Tribunals Service.

Employment Schemes: Young People

Jeremy Lefroy: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what research his Department has commissioned or undertaken into the effectiveness of youth employment programmes in other countries. [173451]

Esther McVey: No recent research has been commissioned. DWP regularly monitors international developments in youth unemployment, and plays an active role in sponsoring work by the OECD, ILO, EU and other international organisations. The cross- country research from those organisations has contributed to the development of DWP policies, including the Youth Contract.

The following are examples of reports containing international comparisons:

OECD Employment Outlook 2013:

http://www.oecd-ilibrary.org/employment/oecd-employment-outlook_19991266

ILO Resolutions and conclusions from 101st session of ILO, 2012:

http://www.ilo.org/wcmsp5/groups/public/---ed_norm/---relconf/documents/meetingdocument/wcms_185950.pdf

Stephen Timms: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions when he intends to publish updated Youth Contract performance data; and at what frequency he plans to publish such data in future. [173627]

Esther McVey: Starts and referrals data for work experience and sector-based work academies—which are both Youth Contract programmes—have been published every six months, with the most recent publication in August 2013. Decisions about future publications of Youth Contract statistics have not yet been taken, but will be pre-announced in line with official statistical protocols.

4 Nov 2013 : Column 94W

Housing Benefit

Roger Williams: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what housing needs of tenants claiming housing benefit can be met by the discretionary housing payment scheme; and whether a local authority can change its allocation policy within a financial year. [173697]

Steve Webb: Housing costs which may be eligible for assistance via discretionary housing payment are comprised of rental liability, rent in advance, deposits and other lump sum costs associated with a housing need such as removal costs.

Local authorities are able to amend their DHP allocation policy as required according to their assessment of local needs and in order to best reflect their particular circumstances and priorities. This may be within the financial year where appropriate.

The Department provides comprehensive guidance to local authorities on administering DHP. A link to the guidance is included here:

www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/184207/discretionary-housing-payments-guide.pdf

Housing Benefit: Scotland

Margaret Curran: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what payments have been made from the discretionary housing payment budget to each local authority in Scotland to date; what proportion of the overall discretionary housing payment budgets such payments to each local authority represent; and what level of such payments have been allocated to each local authority in 2013-14. [173831]

Steve Webb: In the following table, for each Scottish local authority the figure is stated for the total 2013-14 Government contribution towards discretionary housing payments, the value of payments which have been made to date and the percentage which this represents of the Government's total contribution for the year.

£
Local authority2013-14 total Government contribution (£)Payments to date (£)Percentage

Aberdeen

299,125

75,595

25

Aberdeenshire

594,825

53,565

9

Angus

413,506

43,600

11

Argyll and Bute

370,656

50,867

14

Clackmannanshire

178,323

54,029

30

Comhairle nan Eilean Siar

107,388

33,274

31

Dumfries and Galloway

658,354

77,423

12

Dundee

337,506

112,502

33

East Ayrshire

171,570

47,335

28

East Dunbartonshire

107,919

35,973

33

East Lothian

137,196

41,994

31

East Renfrewshire

83,222

27,592

33

Edinburgh

1,430,709

433,333

30

Falkirk

179,720

59,906

33

Fife

539,010

22,201

4

4 Nov 2013 : Column 95W

Glasgow

2,392,818

797,606

33

Highland

987,115

72,035

7

Inverclyde

153,174

51,058

33

Midlothian

159,483

50,151

31

Moray

252,230

22,993

9

North Ayrshire

309,823

103,274

33

North Lanarkshire

469,660

124,892

27

Orkney

64,359

8,918

14

Perth and Kinross

523,618

49,725

9

Renfrewshire

267,351

89,117

33

Scottish Borders

450,553

56,823

13

Shetland

72,457

7,407

10

South Ayrshire

262,150

87,383

33

South Lanarkshire

492,570

138,333

28

Stirling

400,324

37,300

9

West Dunbartonshire

347,472

108,489

31

West Lothian

254,648

84,882

33

The Department's contribution towards DHP is paid in two tranches, the first in June and the second in November. To reduce the risk of overpayment, the first payment is one third of the lower of the Government contribution or the authority's estimate of its DHP expenditure. This is why some of the percentage figures in the above table are below a third.

A local authority meets any expenditure from its own resources until the payments are made. However, should financial difficulties arise, the Department would consider any representations a local authority should wish to make.

This year, in addition to the original Government contribution, local authorities are able to bid for funding from a £20 million reserve fund. The scheme is open to bids until 3 February 2014.

Housing Benefit: Social Rented Housing

Hywel Williams: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what estimate he has made of the number of people in Wales who will move house as a result of the social housing under-occupancy penalty. [173157]

Esther McVey: The Department is not able to reliably estimate the number of people in Wales who will move house as a result of the Removal of the Spare Room Subsidy due to the small sample sizes involved.

We are currently undertaking a two-year monitoring and evaluation exercise which commenced in April this year. Initial findings will be available in 2014 with a final report in late 2015. One of the elements of this evaluation will be to look at how people choose to respond to this measure.

Hywel Williams: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what his policy is on introducing a no-evictions policy for those affected by the social housing under-occupancy penalty. [173158]

4 Nov 2013 : Column 96W

Esther McVey: We have no plans to introduce a no-evictions policy.

If the threat of eviction was removed, some tenants may have no incentive to address rent arrears, seek help with debt prevention or consider downsizing to a smaller home. In addition, it would be unfair on those impacted by the removal of the spare room subsidy who have paid the rent shortfall, if others who have not were treated differently.

Hywel Williams: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what future estimate he has made of demand for discretionary housing payment as a result of the under-occupancy penalty; and if he will publish such figures showing demand in each (a) month and (b) constituency. [173391]

Esther McVey: The Department has made no estimate of future demand for discretionary housing payments as a result of the removal of the spare room subsidy.

However, the Department is collecting six-monthly returns detailing DHP awards in each local authority. This includes the number of awards granted, but not the number that have been refused. We are currently gathering this information and performing the necessary quality assurance checks.

This year, in addition to the original Government contribution, local authorities are able to bid for funding from a £20 million discretionary housing payment reserve fund. The scheme is open to bids until 3 February 2014.

New Enterprise Allowance

Toby Perkins: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many people have received the New Enterprise Allowance in each parliamentary constituency in each month since its inception. [173356]

Esther McVey: Information on the total number of New Enterprise Allowance starts in each parliamentary constituency can be accessed via the following link:

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/230306/gbw-geo-breakdown-_aug-13.xls

It is not possible to produce the numbers of mentor starts and weekly allowance starts by parliamentary constituency for each month as the numbers would be too small.

Personal Independence Payment

Paul Burstow: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions for what reasons the mobility distance criteria adopted for personal independence payments differ from the criteria for disability living allowance and blue badges. [173605]

Mike Penning: Personal independence payment (PIP) is intended to target support on those with the greatest need, create a more financially sustainable benefit, consider needs arising from all impairment types equally and determine awards more objectively and consistently. The assessment criteria for the Mobility component of PIP differ from criteria used for other purposes, including disability living allowance and blue badges, in order to ensure it meets this intent.

4 Nov 2013 : Column 97W

The reasons for the selection of the distances used in determining entitlement to the enhanced rate of the PIP mobility component are included in the Government response to the consultation on the PIP assessment moving around criteria, available on the gov.uk website at

https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/consultation-on-the-pip-assessment-moving-around-activity

Poverty

Chris Ruane: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions pursuant to the answer of 23 October 2013, Official Report, columns 169-70W, on poverty, how many and what proportion of people were in

4 Nov 2013 : Column 98W

relative low-income

(a)

before and

(b)

after housing costs in 2009-10. [173481]

Esther McVey: Estimates of the number and proportion of people living in poverty are published in the Households Below Average Income (HBAI) series. HBAI uses household income adjusted (or ‘equivalised') for household size and composition, to provide a proxy for standard of living.

The following table shows the number and proportion of people with income below 60% of contemporary median income Below Housing Costs (BHC) and After Housing Costs (AHC) in the UK, for 2009-10.

Table: Numbers and proportions of people in households with equivalised incomes below 60% of contemporary median income Before Housing Costs (BHC) and After Housing Costs (AHC)
2009-10Number BHC (million)Proportion BHC (percentage)Number AHC (million)Proportion AHC (percentage)
 

10.3

17

13.5

22

Notes: 1. These statistics are based on Households Below Average Income (HBAI) data sourced from the Family Resources Survey (FRS) available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/206778/full_hbai13.pdf This uses disposable household income, adjusted using modified OECD equalisation factors for household size and composition, as an income measure as a proxy for standard of living. 2. Net disposable incomes have been used to answer the question. This includes earnings from employment and self-employment, state support, income from occupational and private pensions, investment income and other sources. Income tax payments, national insurance contributions, council tax/domestic rates and some other payments are deducted from incomes. 3. Figures are for the United Kingdom. 4. Someone is considered to be in relative low-income if they live in a household whose income is below 60% of median income for all households. Median income is the income of the household in the middle of the income distribution. Household income is equivalised, which means that income is adjusted for the size and composition of the household; and household income is also deflated, which means that income is adjusted for changes in inflation. 5. In HBAI, a household is defined as a single person or group of people living at the same address as their only or main residence, who either share one meal together or share the living accommodation. This differs from a benefit unit (family), which is defined as a single adult or a married or cohabiting couple, plus any dependent children. From January 2006 same-sex partners (civil partners and cohabitees) are also included in the same benefit unit. A household will consist of one or more benefit units. 6. BHC refers to income before housing costs have been deducted; while AHC refers to income after housing costs have been deducted. Housing costs include; rent (gross of housing benefit); water rates, community water charges and council water charges; mortgage interest payments; structural insurance premiums (for owner occupiers); ground rent and service charges. 7. Figures have been rounded to the nearest 1% and to the nearest 100,000 people. Estimates based on survey data are subject to uncertainty; and are subject to sampling error. Figures may not sum due to rounding error.

Social Security Benefits: Young People

Mr Jim Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many people claiming (a) jobseekers allowance, (b) employment and support allowance, (c) income support and (d) incapacity benefit and severe disablement allowance are aged (i) 16, (ii) 17, (iii) 18, (iv) 19, (v) 20, (vi) 21, (vii) 22, (viii) 23 and (ix) 24 years old in the latest period for which figures are available. [173693]

Esther McVey: The information is shown in the following table:

Number of jobseeker's allowance, employment support allowance, incapacity benefit/severe disablement allowance and income support benefit claimants by age: February 2013
Age (years)Jobseeker's allowanceEmployment support allowanceIncapacity benefit/severe disablement allowanceIncome support

16

430

880

2,680

17

2,070

3,150

9,660

18

45,710

9,730

17,290

19

65,290

16,020

21,190

20

67,280

22,060

510

26,340

21

63,220

23,300

1,410

30,040

22

60,940

23,380

2,680

33,330

23

54,490

22,330

4,550

34,420

24

50,030

22,010

6,410

34,950

Total aged under 25

409,460

142,860

15,570

209,890

'—' Denotes nil or negligible. Notes: 1. Data are rounded to the nearest 10. 2. Figures exclude those with an unknown age recorded. 3. Data are for GB and abroad. 4. Although there are data available for JSA from NOMIS, as at September 2013, they do not split the 18-24 age group into individual ages. Source: DWP Information, Governance and Security Directorate 100% WPLS.

4 Nov 2013 : Column 99W

Third Sector

Lisa Nandy: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions if he will list financial assistance to charitable, benevolent or philanthropic institutions made by his Department in 2012-13, pursuant to Section 70(9) of the Charities Act 2006. [173333]

Mike Penning: The Department for Work and Pensions has not published any reports pursuant to Section 70(9) of the Charities Act. In addition, the Department has not identified any transactions entered into during 2012-13 that would satisfy the requirements for reporting pursuant to Section 70(9) of the Charities Act.

Unemployed People: Training

Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what assessment he has made of the adequacy of the current facilities available to people over the age of 40 who are out of work to re-train for a new job. [173210]

Esther McVey: The Department has not made any specific assessments of the adequacy of the training available to people over the age of 40 who are out of work to re-train for a new job.

The Department, working closely with the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, offers a range of training programmes and advice to assist those who are out of work to gain employment. This includes basic skills and vocational training, sector-based work academies, the Work programme and careers advice from the National Careers Service.

The Department monitors the take-up of training initiatives by benefit claimants and carries out evaluations of key initiatives to assess their effectiveness as far as possible.

Universal Credit

Ian Lavery: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions whether individual claims to universal credit resulting from the rollout proposals announced on 10 July 2013 will be subject to the same restrictions as those made in the universal credit pathfinder. [173608]

Esther McVey: Eligibility for universal credit will be the same as in the other pathfinder areas. Newly unemployed people who would formerly have made a straightforward claim for JSA and who meet certain additional criteria will be directed to claim universal credit. All other claimants will continue to be directed to the relevant previous benefit.

Mr Jim Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions in which regions of the UK universal credit is currently available. [173694]

Esther McVey: Universal credit was introduced in the pathfinder areas of Greater Manchester and Cheshire from April 2013, delivered through four local jobcentres in: Ashton-under-Lyne, Oldham, Warrington and Wigan.

Universal credit is being progressively rolled out on a phased timeline to further areas, starting with Hammersmith

4 Nov 2013 : Column 100W

jobcentre on 28 October and will expand to Rugby, Inverness, Harrogate, Bath and Shotton by the spring.

We are also introducing the claimant commitment in 100 jobcentres a month until it's fully in place nationally in the spring, along with 6,000 new computers in jobcentres across the country for claimants to look at and apply for jobs online, replacing the dated job points.

Mr Jim Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how much his Department has spent publicising the move to universal credit in the regions where it is available. [173695]

Esther McVey: We have not conducted any paid-for advertising in the local areas but have used other value- for-money ways to ensure potential universal credit claimants are informed and prepared. This includes free media, leaflets, and working with local partners to provide accurate information directly to potential claimants. Our approach is proportionate and carefully targeted, reflecting the safe and responsible way that universal credit is being progressively rolled out.

Stephen Timms: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many children live in households currently in receipt of universal credit. [173713]

Esther McVey: The Pathfinder eligibility criteria for universal credit are that the claimant must be single, with no dependent children.

DWP officials are currently quality assuring data for universal credit and aim to release an initial set of official statistics on universal credit claimants before the end of 2013.

Work Programme

Stephen Timms: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions whether he collects information on (a) whether jobs taken up by people who enter under the Work programme are part-time or full-time, (b) whether such jobs involve a zero-hours contract and (c) other characteristics of those jobs. [173609]

Esther McVey: Information on how many participants have found part-time and full-time employment through the Work programme is not available. Official Work programme statistics count sustained job outcomes only, i.e. when participants have been in work for 13 or 26 weeks.

The Department does not hold information on the number of participants on the Work programme who have been placed on zero-hours contracts. Historically it has not been departmental practice to hold information relating to the details of an individual's contracts.

Education

Academies

Mr Laurence Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what his policy is on academies awarding contracts to businesses controlled by or belonging to their trustees. [173586]

4 Nov 2013 : Column 101W

Mr Timpson: All academy trusts are required to openly procure any externally sourced services, including those related to their trustees. When a business controlled by or belonging to a trustee bids for a contract the academy trust must consider if that service is the most appropriate for the academy and offers the best value for money. If the academy trust decides to award the contract to the trustee-related service, that business must deliver its services at cost, with no element of profit.

Bookstart Scheme

Chris Ruane: To ask the Secretary of State for Education pursuant to the answer of 22 October 2013, Official Report, columns 112-4W, on Bookstart scheme, what the reasons were for the reduction in Bookstart funding in 2011-12. [173435]

Elizabeth Truss: Since May 2010 we have examined contracts, grants and programmes very carefully to ensure that we are getting the best value. This included working with Booktrust to find funding efficiencies within the book gifting programme. In 2011-12 a grant of £7.5 million was awarded to Booktrust. This ongoing funding allowed Booktrust to deliver their programme, including universal provision and targeted elements for the most disadvantaged. This targeted approach meant that Booktrust could focus provisions where there is the most urgent need to tackle the impact that disadvantage can have on literacy.

Free School Meals

Stephen Timms: To ask the Secretary of State for Education how many children currently receive free school meals because their parent receives universal credit. [173714]

Mr Laws: Universal credit has gone live in the pathfinder areas within Greater Manchester and Cheshire, which are Ashton under Lyne, Wigan, Oldham and Warrington. Those eligible to begin claiming universal credit in these areas do not include households with children. It is possible that some children will join households as a result of a change to a claimant's circumstances. If so they will be entitled to free school meals.

Free Schools

George Galloway: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what criteria are used for ratifying the appointment of governors of free schools. [173395]

Mr Timpson: Free schools, like all academies, are run by academy trusts, which are independent charitable companies. The criteria for appointing governors are set out by the trust's Articles of Association and in the Companies Act 2006. The trust is wholly responsible for the appointment process, including any formal ratification of appointments required by its Articles or the Companies Act.

Free Schools: Bedfordshire

Kevin Brennan: To ask the Secretary of State for Education (1) when he will publish his Department's findings from its investigation into the Barnfied Federation; [173717]

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(2) when Ministers in his Department were made aware of the allegations concerning the Barnfield Federation which triggered his Department's investigation; [173829]

(3) what the nature is of the allegations relating to the Barnfield Federation which are subject to an investigation by his Department. [173830]

Mr Timpson: The allegations were made to the Skills Funding Agency, which notified the Department for Education on 4 September 2013.

The allegations relate to governance and financial matters. The Government cannot, however, give further details of ongoing investigations.

The Academies Financial Handbook states that the Education Funding Agency will publish investigation reports, but there is no set timeframe for their publication. Publication of the Barnfield investigation report will depend on the progress of the investigation and the nature of the issues raised.

Kings Science Academy

George Galloway: To ask the Secretary of State for Education (1) for what reason the redacted report into the financial irregularities at Kings Science Academy was published five months after it was completed; [173338]

(2) if he will publish an unredacted report of his Department's inquiry into Kings Science Academy in Bradford. [173339]

Mr Timpson: In the past these reports were not published by central Government and there has been no consistent practice by local authorities for similar reports relating to maintained schools. We rewrote the Academies Financial Handbook to provide a much sharper and clearer financial accountability system. It states that the Education Funding Agency (EFA) will publish reports into investigations. There is no set timeframe for the publication of reports. In this case, the EFA was awaiting the outcome of the police enquiries and any disciplinary process before publishing the report.

The Department has no plans to publish an unredacted report. The redactions were made in accordance with EFA's responsibilities under the Data Protection Act 1998 and have been made to protect commercially sensitive information.

Kevin Brennan: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what the reasons are for the delay between the completion of the Education Funding Agency's report on Kings Science School, Bradford and its publication by his Department. [173718]

Mr Timpson: In the past these reports were not published by central Government and there has been no consistent practice by local authorities for similar reports relating to maintained schools. We re-wrote the Academies Financial Handbook to provide a much sharper and clearer financial accountability system. It states that the Education Funding Agency (EFA) will publish reports into investigations it undertakes. There is no set timeframe for the publication of reports. In this case, the EFA was awaiting the outcome of the police inquiries and any disciplinary process before publishing the redacted report.

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Literacy: Essex

Mr Simon Burns: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what education schemes his Department has funded to promote literacy skills for (a) children and (b) adults with severe learning or physical disability in Chelmsford and Essex. [173809]

Mr Timpson: The Department for Education has funded a number of programmes to promote literacy for children and young people with a learning difficulty or disability. Grant funding was provided to the Dyslexia Specific Learning Difficulties (SpLD) Trust in 2011-13 to provide advice and information to schools, parents and young people on dyslexia and literacy. In 2013-15 the trust is also funded through a contract to support the Government's special educational needs (SEN) reforms for children and young people with dyslexia and literacy difficulties, and to provide information on training and effective approaches to identifying and supporting dyslexic pupils.

Funding was provided to Dyslexia Action and the Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) in 2011-13 to develop the ‘load2learn’ programme which has made more than 2,000 core texts available in flexible digital format to pupils across the country. Funding was also provided to the National Deaf Children's Society in 2011-13 to support their work in making schools more deaf-friendly, including guidance on teaching phonics to children with a hearing impairment.

From September 2011 to October 2013 the Department has provided match-funding to all state-funded primary schools in England with key stage 1 pupils so that they can purchase effective systematic synthetic phonics products and training to support their teaching of early reading. From January 2013 the Department is also providing a literacy and numeracy catch-up premium to secondary schools, including special schools, for year 7 pupils who have not achieved level 4 at key stage 2 in reading and/or mathematics.

Each of these programmes has offered support to schools across the country. It is up to individual schools to decide how to use their resources to support their teaching because schools are best placed to recognise the learning needs of their pupils, and to decide what support each child requires.

In addition, the Government are fully funding basic English and mathematics courses for adults, including those with learning difficulties and/or disabilities, who lack those skills. Further education provision is funded through the Adult Skills Budget and eligible providers will be able to access this funding to meet the needs of local learners.

We also provide Learning Support funding to colleges and providers to help them meet the costs of reasonable adjustments as set out in the Equality Act 2010. Learning Support is available to meet the additional needs of learners with learning difficulties and/or disabilities so that they can participate fully in education and training and have the support required to achieve basic English and mathematics qualifications.

Ministerial Policy Advisers

Mr Jim Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Education how many officials at what grades are employed to provide direct support to special advisers in his Department. [174052]

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Elizabeth Truss: There are three members of staff who provide direct support to special advisers—the same number as in April 2010 under the previous Government. They also provide direct support to senior civil servants in the ministerial private offices.

The three members of staff are comprised of one HEO grade and two EO grade officials.

Schools: Sports

Sir Menzies Campbell: To ask the Secretary of State for Education pursuant to the answer of 2 July 2013, Official Report, column 600W on schools: sports, what guidance his Department issues to schools on what the appropriate weekly time allocation for PE at all four stages is. [173611]

Mr Timpson: The Department for Education does not prescribe or offer guidance on how much time schools should allocate for PE. Head teachers are best placed to decide how to meet the needs of their pupils in all curriculum subjects, including PE.

Sir Menzies Campbell: To ask the Secretary of State for Education if he will direct Ofsted to include a statement on the adequacy of PE provision in all Ofsted reports. [173612]

Mr Timpson: The Government are committed to improving the quality of PE in all schools and we are working with Ofsted to support this aim. The details of school inspection arrangements are a matter for Ofsted, but from September 2013, and in support of the additional funding provided by the Government to improve PE and sport, Ofsted inspectors have been taking account of PE and sport provision in all inspections of primary schools.

Schools: Standards

John Mann: To ask the Secretary of State for Education which five schools were ranked highest in terms of pupils receiving special consideration marks for problems such as temporary illness in the most recent period for which figures are available. [173805]

Elizabeth Truss: Ofqual, the exams regulator, regulates awarding organisations to ensure compliance with the General Conditions of Recognition, which include arrangements for special consideration, and monitors the overall impact of special considerations nationally. However, neither Ofqual nor the Department for Education hold data on special consideration at school or college level.

Work Experience

Nic Dakin: To ask the Secretary of State for Education whether (a) he and (b) Ministers in his Department have asked the (i) Confederation of British Industry, (ii) Institute of Directors, (iii) Federation of Small Businesses and (iv) British Chambers of Commerce to encourage their members to offer work experience placements as part of 16-19 study programmes. [173835]

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Matthew Hancock: Expanding post-16 work experience is a key component of 16-19 study programmes now offered in schools and colleges.

The Minister of State for Employment; the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, the right hon. Member for Twickenham (Vince Cable); the Minister for Business and Enterprise, the Minister for Government Policy and I wrote to employers in May 2013 encouraging them to offer more work experience placements and setting out the steps taken to simplify the process for doing so.

The Confederation of British Industry (CBI), the Institute of Directors (IOD), the Federation of Small

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Businesses (FSB) and the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) have been asked directly to encourage their members to offer more placements.

The CBI has hosted seminars nationally to encourage employers to offer work experience. The CBI, BCC and IOD worked with the Department for Education to deregulate work experience and disseminate the results to their members, and the FSB helped the Department produce a one-page information leaflet on work experience for its members.