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Written Question
Teachers: Work Experience
Monday 24th April 2023

Asked by: Deidre Brock (Scottish National Party - Edinburgh North and Leith)

Question to the Department for Education:

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, with reference to the article by the Independent Game Developers’ Association entitled TIGA Launches Proposal for an Industrial Secondment Programme, published on 25 January 2023, if she will make an assessment of the potential merits of accepting the recommendation on introducing an industrial secondment scheme for video games lecturers.

Answered by Robert Halfon - Minister of State (Education)

The government is committed to supporting the growth of the UK’s video games sector which brings economic, cultural and social benefits across the UK.

Through the Strategic Priorities Grant, the department is providing funding on an annual basis to support teaching and students in higher education, including expensive to deliver subjects, such as computer game and computer game design degrees, in addition to science and engineering more widely. The department is investing an additional £750 million over the three-year period from 2022/23 to 2024/25 to support high quality teaching and facilities, including in science and engineering. This includes £450 million in capital funding to invest in teaching and learning facilities.

We are also increasing the level of overall investment in the further education (FE) and skills sector, worth £3.8 billion over the course of this parliament.

It is important that lecturers enhance their teaching skills and keep their practical knowledge of game development current. The Skills for Jobs White Paper introduces a ‘Workforce Industry Exchange’ policy commitment to ensure that FE teachers have the relevant industry experience to make sure that young people are being taught the skills that employers need. This will help support the sector by encouraging collaboration with industry staff teaching FE provision and upskilling existing teachers with relevant industry skills. This will allow staff to continuously develop their professionalism and insight and ensure that FE is able to adapt to the needs of a changing economy.

To facilitate this we are working with business leaders to develop resources supporting knowledge exchange and detailing how employers can get involved in FE learning. We are keen to create a pipeline of talented individuals from industry who can teach the next generation in FE and to support industry to upskill existing teachers in the latest practices and innovations in their sector.


Written Question
Teachers: Work Experience
Monday 24th April 2023

Asked by: Deidre Brock (Scottish National Party - Edinburgh North and Leith)

Question to the Department for Education:

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, if she will make an assessment of the potential merits of introducing an industrial secondment scheme for video games lecturers.

Answered by Robert Halfon - Minister of State (Education)

The government is committed to supporting the growth of the UK’s video games sector which brings economic, cultural and social benefits across the UK.

Through the Strategic Priorities Grant, the department is providing funding on an annual basis to support teaching and students in higher education, including expensive to deliver subjects, such as computer game and computer game design degrees, in addition to science and engineering more widely. The department is investing an additional £750 million over the three-year period from 2022/23 to 2024/25 to support high quality teaching and facilities, including in science and engineering. This includes £450 million in capital funding to invest in teaching and learning facilities.

We are also increasing the level of overall investment in the further education (FE) and skills sector, worth £3.8 billion over the course of this parliament.

It is important that lecturers enhance their teaching skills and keep their practical knowledge of game development current. The Skills for Jobs White Paper introduces a ‘Workforce Industry Exchange’ policy commitment to ensure that FE teachers have the relevant industry experience to make sure that young people are being taught the skills that employers need. This will help support the sector by encouraging collaboration with industry staff teaching FE provision and upskilling existing teachers with relevant industry skills. This will allow staff to continuously develop their professionalism and insight and ensure that FE is able to adapt to the needs of a changing economy.

To facilitate this we are working with business leaders to develop resources supporting knowledge exchange and detailing how employers can get involved in FE learning. We are keen to create a pipeline of talented individuals from industry who can teach the next generation in FE and to support industry to upskill existing teachers in the latest practices and innovations in their sector.


Written Question
Department for Education: Buildings and Land
Friday 30th September 2022

Asked by: Deidre Brock (Scottish National Party - Edinburgh North and Leith)

Question to the Department for Education:

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what surplus land and buildings the Department has disposed of in each of the last five years; who the buyer of each of those areas of land was; and how much was paid for each of those areas of land.

Answered by Jonathan Gullis

The Department purchases land and buildings for new free school projects. As of 1 September 2022, there were 653 open free schools and more than 150 in pre-opening.

The attached table includes the disposal of surplus sites and buildings from 1 September 2017. These addresses relate to sites that the Department disposed of after having purchased them for new free schools, studio schools, or university technical colleges.

Where sites earmarked for new free schools become surplus, the Department will always aim to prioritise alternative educational or public sector uses for them where this is possible, before considering commercial disposal.


Written Question
Department for Education: Information Officers
Thursday 28th April 2022

Asked by: Deidre Brock (Scottish National Party - Edinburgh North and Leith)

Question to the Department for Education:

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many communications staff are employed by his Department (a) full time, (b) part time and (c) on flexible working arrangements as of 19 April 2022.

Answered by Michelle Donelan - Secretary of State for Science, Innovation and Technology

As of 25 April 2022, the Communications Directorate in the Department for Education employed 96 Government Communications Service staff, including 76 full-time and 20 part-time.


Written Question
Department for Education: Information Officers
Thursday 28th April 2022

Asked by: Deidre Brock (Scottish National Party - Edinburgh North and Leith)

Question to the Department for Education:

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how much the Department spent on communications staff in (a) 2019-20, (b) 2020-21 and (c) 2021-22.

Answered by Michelle Donelan - Secretary of State for Science, Innovation and Technology

The Department for Education’s spend on Government Communications Service staff in the Communications Directorate, in the requested years, can be found in the table below. The expenditure includes pay, pension costs, overtime, and travel.

Financial year

Spend

2019/20

£3,146,805

2020/21

£4,978,933

2021/22

£4,966,306


Written Question
Education
Monday 17th December 2018

Asked by: Deidre Brock (Scottish National Party - Edinburgh North and Leith)

Question to the Department for Education:

What recent discussions he has had with the Prime Minister on the effect on schools and universities of the UK leaving the EU.

Answered by Chris Skidmore

There are regular Cabinet discussions on the impact of leaving the EU. We are considering all aspects of how exiting the EU might affect education. This includes consideration of institutions’ access to European funding sources, participation in EU funded programmes, future arrangements for migration and arrangements for access to student finance support.


Written Question
Schools and Universities
Monday 17th December 2018

Asked by: Deidre Brock (Scottish National Party - Edinburgh North and Leith)

Question to the Department for Education:

What recent discussions he has had with the Prime Minister on the effect on schools and universities of the UK leaving the EU.

Answered by Chris Skidmore

There are regular Cabinet discussions on the impact of leaving the EU. We are considering all aspects of how exiting the EU might affect education. This includes consideration of institutions’ access to European funding sources, participation in EU funded programmes, future arrangements for migration and arrangements for access to student finance support.


Written Question
Department for Education: Official Hospitality
Thursday 5th April 2018

Asked by: Deidre Brock (Scottish National Party - Edinburgh North and Leith)

Question to the Department for Education:

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how much money his Department has spent on hospitality in each of the last five years.

Answered by Anne Milton

I refer the hon. Member for Edinburgh North and Leith to the answer I gave on 2 February 2018 to Question 124714 https://www.parliament.uk/business/publications/written-questions-answers-statements/written-question/Commons/2018-01-24/124714/.


Written Question
Department for Education: SCL Group
Tuesday 3rd April 2018

Asked by: Deidre Brock (Scottish National Party - Edinburgh North and Leith)

Question to the Department for Education:

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether (a) his Department and (b) any of his Department's agencies entered into contracts with Strategic Communication Laboratories in each year since 2010.

Answered by Anne Milton

The department have not entered into any commercial contracts with Cambridge Analytica or its parent organisation Strategic Communication Laboratories Group.

Since January 2011, details of central government contracts above the value of £10,000 are published on Contracts Finder. Contracts published prior to 26 February 2015 can be viewed at: https://data.gov.uk/data/contracts-finder-archive. Those published after 26 February 2015 can be viewed at: https://www.contractsfinder.service.gov.uk/Search.


Written Question
Department for Education: Cambridge Analytica
Tuesday 3rd April 2018

Asked by: Deidre Brock (Scottish National Party - Edinburgh North and Leith)

Question to the Department for Education:

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether (a) his Department and (b) any of its agencies has entered into contracts with Cambridge Analytica since 2012.

Answered by Anne Milton

The department have not entered into any commercial contracts with Cambridge Analytica or its parent organisation Strategic Communication Laboratories Group.

Since January 2011, details of central government contracts above the value of £10,000 are published on Contracts Finder. Contracts published prior to 26 February 2015 can be viewed at: https://data.gov.uk/data/contracts-finder-archive. Those published after 26 February 2015 can be viewed at: https://www.contractsfinder.service.gov.uk/Search.