Wes Streeting Portrait

Wes Streeting

Labour - Ilford North

Shadow Secretary of State for Child Poverty

(since May 2021)
Shadow Minister (Education) (Schools)
16th Oct 2020 - 9th May 2021
Committee on the Future Relationship with the European Union
2nd Mar 2020 - 16th Jan 2021
Shadow Exchequer Secretary (Treasury)
10th Apr 2020 - 16th Oct 2020
Treasury Sub-Committee
14th Sep 2017 - 6th Nov 2019
Treasury Committee
11th Sep 2017 - 6th Nov 2019
Treasury Committee
8th Jul 2015 - 3rd May 2017


There are no upcoming events identified
Division Votes
Wednesday 28th April 2021
Fire Safety Bill
voted No - in line with the party majority
One of 194 Labour No votes vs 0 Labour Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 322 Noes - 256
Speeches
Monday 26th April 2021
Oral Answers to Questions

Like so many other aspects of the Government’s coronavirus response, the Department for Education’s handling of exams has been a …

Written Answers
Thursday 15th April 2021
Pupil Premium
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, if he will publish a copy of the financial assessment that was …
Early Day Motions
Wednesday 25th March 2020
Statutory Sick Pay
That this House notes that the Secretary of State for Health told the BBC Question Time programme that he could …
Bills
Tuesday 22nd March 2016
Taxi and Private Hire Vehicle Operators (Regulation) Bill 2015-16
A Bill to make provision about the skills and knowledge required of a person driving a taxi or private hire …
MP Financial Interests
Saturday 11th January 2020
1. Employment and earnings
4 October 2019, received £5,000 from JP Morgan, 25 Bank Street, London E14 5JP, for speaking on a panel at …
EDM signed
Wednesday 27th January 2021
Holocaust Memorial Day 2021
That this House notes that on 27 January 2021 the UK will observe Holocaust Memorial Day marking the anniversary of …
Supported Legislation
Tuesday 9th June 2020
Pedicabs (London) Bill 2019-21
A Bill to provide for the regulation of the carrying of passengers in Greater London by pedal cycles and power-assisted …

Division Voting information

During the current Parliamentary Session, Wes Streeting has voted in 233 divisions, and never against the majority of their Party.
View All Wes Streeting Division Votes

Debates during the 2019 Parliament

Speeches made during Parliamentary debates are recorded in Hansard. For ease of browsing we have grouped debates into individual, departmental and legislative categories.

Sparring Partners
Jesse Norman (Conservative)
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
(55 debate interactions)
Kemi Badenoch (Conservative)
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
(27 debate interactions)
Alison Thewliss (Scottish National Party)
Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Treasury)
(17 debate interactions)
View All Sparring Partners
Department Debates
HM Treasury
(113 debate contributions)
Department for Education
(29 debate contributions)
Department of Health and Social Care
(11 debate contributions)
View All Department Debates
View all Wes Streeting's debates

Ilford North Petitions

e-Petitions are administered by Parliament and allow members of the public to express support for a particular issue.

If an e-petition reaches 10,000 signatures the Government will issue a written response.

If an e-petition reaches 100,000 signatures the petition becomes eligible for a Parliamentary debate (usually Monday 4.30pm in Westminster Hall).

Petitions with highest Ilford North signature proportion
Petitions with most Ilford North signatures
Petition Debates Contributed

The government should allow BTEC students to achieve teacher predicted grades rather than being forced into a system that is unethically downgrading thousands of students grades.

Please don’t send students back until we know we have had the priority groups vaccinated such as the elderly, the extremely clinically vulnerable, and those with underlying health conditions.

Cancel all standardise testing for year 11 and year 12 students in 2021. By replacing tests with smaller amounts of course work and teacher assessment, students would have a fair chance at achieving their target grades and it would relieve stress for teachers and students.

Schools can be a breeding ground for the spread of coronavirus. Children are mingling at schools and returning to families who are potentially vulnerable, keeping rates high.

It's only been since schools opened that infection rates have been high in Kent, and keeping them open may keep it high.

Schools should move to online learning from 9 December so that all students and school staff have a chance to isolate for two weeks and then can safely meet older relatives.

The Government should cancel GCSEs and A Levels in 2021 due to the disruption of Covid-19. By the time students go back to normal learning, 6 months will have passed since schools were closed to most pupils. This has already had a huge impact on the studying of so many.

Close down schools and colleges due to the increase in COVID-19 cases. We are seeing cases of students and teachers catching the virus since schools have reopened.

The threat of covid19 is real. Children can’t be expected to maintain sufficient social distancing to keep this virus from spreading. They are social creatures. Allowing them back to school could cause a new spike in cases. They could bring it back home, even if they are a-symptomatic.

12 kids in the UK are diagnosed with cancer daily. 1 in 5 will die within 5 years, often of the deadliest types like DIPG (brainstem cancer) - fatal on diagnosis & other cancers on relapse. Yet there has been little, or no, funding for research into these cancers and little, or no, progress.

Legislate to allow parents to have the option to remove their children from school if there is a pandemic e.g. Coronavirus or similar without negative action by schools or local authorities. They shouldn’t lose the child’s place in the school or face any kind of prosecution.


Latest EDMs signed by Wes Streeting

30th December 2020
Wes Streeting signed this EDM on Wednesday 27th January 2021

Holocaust Memorial Day 2021

Tabled by: Bob Blackman (Conservative - Harrow East)
That this House notes that on 27 January 2021 the UK will observe Holocaust Memorial Day marking the anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz-Birkenau, where an estimated 1.1 million people were murdered; commemorates the six million victims of the Holocaust; further notes that the theme for Holocaust Memorial Day 2021 …
97 signatures
(Most recent: 11 May 2021)
Signatures by party:
Labour: 45
Scottish National Party: 31
Conservative: 7
Liberal Democrat: 4
Independent: 3
Plaid Cymru: 3
Democratic Unionist Party: 2
Green Party: 1
Alba Party: 1
14th January 2021
Wes Streeting signed this EDM on Monday 18th January 2021

Godfrey Colin Cameron

Tabled by: Chris Stephens (Scottish National Party - Glasgow South West)
That this House is deeply saddened by news of the death of Godfrey Colin Cameron, a hardworking member of Parliamentary security staff and member of the PCS trade union who passed away aged just 55 after contracting covid-19; extends our sincere condolences to his devoted wife Hyacinth, children Leon and …
139 signatures
(Most recent: 8 Feb 2021)
Signatures by party:
Labour: 117
Scottish National Party: 15
Plaid Cymru: 3
Independent: 2
Alba Party: 1
Democratic Unionist Party: 1
View All Wes Streeting's signed Early Day Motions

Commons initiatives

These initiatives were driven by Wes Streeting, and are more likely to reflect personal policy preferences.

MPs who are act as Ministers or Shadow Ministers are generally restricted from performing Commons initiatives other than Urgent Questions.


Wes Streeting has not been granted any Urgent Questions

Wes Streeting has not been granted any Adjournment Debates

1 Bill introduced by Wes Streeting


A Bill to make provision about the skills and knowledge required of a person driving a taxi or private hire vehicle (TPHV) and related responsibilities of TPHV company operators and service providers; to require operators of TPHV companies and service providers to hold specified types and levels of insurance; to make provision about the tax liability of TPHV companies and service providers; and for connected purposes.


Last Event - 1st Reading: House Of Commons
Tuesday 22nd March 2016

199 Written Questions in the current parliament

(View all written questions)
Explanation of written questions
1 Other Department Questions
3rd Sep 2020
To ask the hon. Member for Perth and North Perthshire, representing the House of Commons Commission, what arrangements are in place for (a) the House of Commons and (b) hon. Members to participate in the Kickstart scheme.

The House of Commons has a good track record for supporting young people into employment, and particularly those from disadvantaged and under-represented groups. We currently achieve this through the paid internships we offer as part of the Speaker's Parliamentary Placement Scheme and our Summer Diversity Internship Programme, as well as through our apprenticeship programme. In line with this commitment the House authorities are currently discussing the best way to engage with the Kickstart scheme, both as an employer and in their role supporting Members and their offices.

Pete Wishart
Shadow SNP Leader of the House of Commons
1st Feb 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many and what proportion of the staff employed by his Department are apprentices.

As has been the case under successive administrations, the Prime Minister’s Office and the Government in Parliament are an integral part of the Cabinet Office.

As of 31 January 2021, apprentices make up 2.13% of the department’s workforce.

Julia Lopez
Parliamentary Secretary (Cabinet Office)
18th May 2020
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many covid-19 related deaths were recorded in care homes in the London Borough of Redbridge in each month in 2020.

The information requested falls under the remit of the UK Statistics Authority. I have therefore asked the Authority to respond.

Chloe Smith
Minister of State (Cabinet Office)
18th May 2020
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many deaths in care homes have been recorded in the London borough of Redbridge in each month since January 2020.

The information requested falls under the remit of the UK Statistics Authority. I have therefore asked the Authority to respond.

Chloe Smith
Minister of State (Cabinet Office)
18th May 2020
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many deaths in care homes were recorded in the London borough of Redbridge in each month in 2019.

The information requested falls under the remit of the UK Statistics Authority. I have therefore asked the Authority to respond.

Chloe Smith
Minister of State (Cabinet Office)
1st Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, how many and what proportion of the staff employed by his Department are apprentices.

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (excluding its Executive Agencies) currently has 97 apprentices. The proportion of apprentices employed by the Department is 1.78%.

Amanda Solloway
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
12th Oct 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what estimate he has made of the amount of money fraudulently obtained from the Bounce Back Loan Scheme to date.

I refer the Hon. Member to the answer I gave him on 1 October 2020, to Question 96132.

Paul Scully
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
28th Sep 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what estimate his Department has made of the amount fraudulently acquired from the Bounce Back Loan Scheme.

As part of the Bounce Back Loan Scheme application process lenders undertake fraud checks, including Know Your Customer and Anti Money Laundering checks as required. In addition, the application form is clear – any individual who knowingly provides false information is at risk of criminal prosecution. We are working across Departments, and with lenders and law enforcement agencies, to tackle fraudulent abuse of the scheme.

Further details of how we expect the Bounce Back Loan Scheme to perform are set out in our accounts for 2019-20, a copy of which has been placed in the Libraries of the House. At this early stage, such estimates are naturally highly uncertain as reflected in the explanatory notes of the Accounts.

Paul Scully
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
15th Jul 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, with reference to paragraph 2.47 of the Plan for Jobs, published July 2020, how much funding he has allocated to the Construction Talent Retention Scheme.

The Construction Talent Retention Scheme will support the redeployment of staff that are at risk of redundancy across the construction sector, while also enabling temporary employee loans between businesses. The Scheme will give displaced workers from other sectors a route to find new employment in construction.

This not-for-profit Scheme will be funded by the Department until the end of the current financial year, with £1.164 million having been secured. The construction industry will provide funding to support the Scheme post-March 2021.

Nadhim Zahawi
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
14th Jul 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, with reference to paragraph 2.54 of the July 2020 Plan for Jobs CP 261, what estimate he has made of the number of homes that will benefit from the Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund.

The Summer Economic Update announced £50m to demonstrate innovative approaches to retrofitting social housing at scale, accelerating the delivery of the Social Housing Decarbonisation. This will mean warmer and more energy efficient homes and could reduce annual energy bills by hundreds of pounds for some of the poorest households, as well as lowering carbon emissions. The Programme will be UK wide and will upgrade thousands of poor energy performing social homes, with high levels of energy efficiency (e.g. floor / wall insulation) and low carbon heating (where appropriate).

Kwasi Kwarteng
Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy
3rd Jun 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether the conditions attached to the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme prevent companies from (a) treating the period during which staff are furloughed as a notice period prior to redundancy and (b) substituting pay for furloughed staff as redundancy pay; and if he will make a statement.

An individual’s pay during their redundancy notice period is based on their rights under their contract of employment and the statutory right to notice pay.

Employees who are dismissed due to redundancy and who satisfy certain qualifying conditions are also statutorily entitled to a lump sum from their employer, based on their age, length of service and contractual weekly earnings, subject to a statutory upper limit.

While individual’s redundancy rights will depend on their contractual terms and statutory protections, the Coronavirus Job Retention scheme does not prevent an individual who is using the scheme from being placed on redundancy notice. During this difficult period, we urge employers to exercise discretion and not use the Job Retention Scheme to make someone redundant on less favourable terms than they would otherwise have received.

Paul Scully
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
19th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps he is taking to penalise (a) businesses and (b) individuals engaged in (i) price gouging and (ii) profiteering during the covid-19 pandemic.

The Government is clear that excessive price increases exploiting the covid-19 outbreak are unacceptable. We are speaking with retailers daily and the Competition and Markets Authority has established a taskforce to tackle the issue. It has approached traders already to stop excessive price increases. Consumers and businesses should report any issues directly to the taskforce online. The Government is monitoring this situation closely and will take further action if it is necessary.

Paul Scully
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy)
10th Sep 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what assessment he has made of the potential effect of covid-19 lockdown restrictions on Remembrance Sunday and related events.

We are planning for this year’s National Remembrance Sunday Service to take place on November 8. We will be putting in place a number of mitigations according to the official public health guidance so that this significant national event can take place safely. We will continue to monitor the situation and will make further changes should they become necessary.

Caroline Dinenage
Minister of State (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
13th Jul 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, how much of the £750 million Government financial support announced for charities in response to the covid-19 outbreak has been paid out; and to how many charities that funding has been allocated.

Of the £750m of financial support for charities during the Covid-19 crisis, £360m was committed to be distributed by other government departments, which includes £200m to be distributed to hospices via the Department for Health & Social Care. Currently, over £150m has been dispersed for hospices. Of the remaining £160m allocated to other government departments, £59.4m has been distributed.

£310m of the £750m total was committed to support small and medium charities in England during the Covid-19 crisis. Of this, £200m has been allocated to the Coronavirus Community Support Fund (CCSF) which is being distributed by the National Lottery Community Fund. To date, 934 grants have been awarded to charities and social enterprises in England, totalling approximately £20m. Of this, payments have been made to 463 organisations, totalling £5,163,403.

We are continuing to review the early findings from the distribution of the Coronavirus Community Support Fund (CCSF) to ensure that the remaining £110m is utilised in the most effective way, addressing emerging priorities.

Lastly, the government committed to match-fund the £36.5m raised during the BBC Big Night In. To date, £21.9m has been disbursed to our partners (NET & Comic Relief). Please note that no funds have been distributed to Children in Need yet.

We have published clear and comprehensive guidance on the full £750 million package of support for charities and how organisations can apply for it on Gov.uk. This guidance will be updated frequently: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/financial-support-for-voluntary-community-and-social-enterprise-vcse-organisations-to-respond-to-coronavirus-covid-19

John Whittingdale
Minister of State (Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport)
16th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what discussions he has had with civil society organisations on the effect of covid-19 on their (a) financial stability and (b) ability to deliver effectively for communities as part of the Government's civil contingency planning.

Organisations across civil society are already working tirelessly to support their communities in response to covid-19. I have had several conversations with civil society organisations about responding to covid-19 and its potential impact on charities and social enterprises. Last week the Minister for Civil Society, Baroness Barran, held a roundtable with over 45 charities to listen to their concerns. We are working with colleagues across government to shape support available to mitigate risks in the coming weeks and months and deliver effectively for communities.

Oliver Dowden
Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport
12th Apr 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, if he will publish a copy of the financial assessment that was made ahead of his Department's decision to base pupil premium allocations for the 2021-22 academic year on the October 2020 school census and not the January 2021 school census.

The January 2021 census will be used to determine pupil premium eligibility for alternative provision and pupil referral units for the financial year 2021-22. Pupil premium eligibility for mainstream and special schools will be based on the October 2020 census. Per pupil funding rates will be the same as in 2020-21, which is expected to increase pupil premium funding from £2.4 billion in 2020-21 to more than £2.5 billion in 2021-22 as more children have become eligible for free school meals. In addition to this, the Government announced a further £300 million for a one-off Recovery Premium which will be allocated to schools based on the same methodology as the pupil premium. In this way, schools with more disadvantaged pupils will receive larger amounts.

The Department will confirm pupil premium allocations for the financial year 2021-22 in June 2021. This will provide the public with information on the specific amounts that regions, local authorities, and schools are receiving through the pupil premium for 2021-22.

The Department publishes information on pupil premium allocations and the number of pupils eligible annually. The most recent publicly available figures can be found via this link: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/pupil-premium-allocations-and-conditions-of-grant-2020-to-2021.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
22nd Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, from which departmental budget the funding for the Government’s £700 million Covid-19 catch up package, announced on 22 February 2021 was re-allocated.

I refer the hon. Member for Ilford North to the answer I gave on 5 March 2021 to Question 160739.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
22nd Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what the total net change was in the number of pupils eligible for free school meals between 1 October 2020 and 21 January 2021.

Information on the change in numbers of pupils eligible for free school meals between October 2020 and January 2021 is not available because statistics are not available yet for January 2021. The information has been collected in the January school census and will be published in June 2021.

Vicky Ford
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
15th Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, with reference to the fund for exceptional costs associated with covid-19 for the period from March to July 2020, how many applications were (a) awarded and (b) rejected by constituency and local authority; and what the value was of those applications (i) awarded and (ii) rejected by constituency and local authority.

The Department has provided additional funding to schools, on top of existing budgets, to cover unavoidable costs incurred between March and July 2020 due to the COVID-19 outbreak that could not be met from their budgets.

Schools were eligible to claim for funding for: increased premises related costs associated with keeping open over the Easter and summer half term holidays; support for free school meals for eligible children who were not in school, where schools were not using the national voucher scheme; and additional cleaning costs required due to confirmed or suspected COVID-19 cases, over and above the cost of existing cleaning arrangements.

To date, the Department has paid schools £138 million for all claims within the published scope of the fund, across both application windows. In the first application window we offered the opportunity for schools to flag other exceptional costs not included under the agreed categories, which were subject to further assessment. Schools applied for £42 million of additional costs which were not paid. We made it clear that we could not guarantee any claims beyond the published scope of the fund would be paid. It is reasonable for taxpayers to expect that public funding is targeted towards those who most need it. Therefore, the fund was targeted towards the costs we identified as the biggest barrier to schools operating as they needed to between March and July 2020 to support vulnerable children and children of critical workers.

Over 15,500 schools applied for funding through the exceptional costs fund, and to date we have made more than 19,000 payments from the fund. Around 450 schools did not apply for any of the eligible categories of funding and have not received payments.

The Department will publish a full breakdown of allocations from the exceptional costs fund, by school, in due course.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
9th Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how much his Department has spent on consultants for (a) marketing, (b) focus group, (c) polling and (d) other promotional activity relating to his Department's responsibilities in each year since 2015.

Data on consultancy spend against the categories a) marketing, (b) focus group, (c) polling and (d) other promotional activity is not readily available and could only be obtained at a disproportionate cost.

A transactional breakdown of spending over £25,000 is published at the links below. The reports can be filtered by Consultancy under ‘Expense Type’.

Spend reporting for Financial Year 2020 to 2021: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/dfe-and-executive-agency-spend-over-25000-2020-to-2021.

Spend reporting for Financial Year 2019 to 2020: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/dfe-and-executive-agency-spend-over-25000-2019-to-2020.

Spend reporting for Financial Year 2018 to 2019: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/dfe-and-executive-agency-spend-over-25000-2018-to-2019.

Spend reporting for Financial Year 2017 to 2018: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/dfe-and-executive-agency-spend-over-25000-2017-to-2018.

Spend reporting for Financial Year 2016 to 2017: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/dfe-and-executive-agency-spend-over-25000-2016-to-2017.

Spend reporting for Financial Year 2015 to 2016: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/dfe-and-executive-agency-spend-over-25000-2015-to-2016.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
8th Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many schools are participating in the National Tutoring Programme (a) in total, (b) by constituency and (c) by local authority.

The National Tutoring Programme (NTP) provides additional, targeted support to disadvantaged pupils and is being delivered for the Department by the Education Endowment Foundation and Teach First.

There are currently 4,227 schools enrolled with Tuition Partners. The Department does not hold the requested information at constituency or local authority level. We are working to ensure that there is a high level of awareness amongst schools of the support available, particularly in areas with high numbers of disadvantaged pupils. In academic year 2020-21, we expect that 250,000 children will be tutored by NTP Tuition Partners.

There is still availability for schools to access high-quality tuition, subsidised at 75% by the Department, through the Tuition Partners. We would encourage all schools to review the support available to them from Tuition Partners to provide additional, targeted support for disadvantaged pupils. This will help ensure that the NTP can support as many pupils as possible. Further information and sign-up details are here: https://nationaltutoring.org.uk/ntp-tuition-partners.

In February 2021, we launched a tendering process to secure a NTP delivery partner to provide a further year of NTP support. Further details will be available in due course but we expect to support approximately 750,000 pupils through the NTP in academic year 2021-22.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
8th Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many (a) laptop devices and (b) internet dongles were distributed to schools prior to 8 March 2021 as part of the Government's policies to support remote learning during the covid-19 outbreak.

As of Monday 8 March 2021, over 1.2 million laptops and tablets have been delivered to schools, academy trusts, local authorities and further education colleges. More information can be found here: https://explore-education-statistics.service.gov.uk/find-statistics/laptops-and-tablets-data.

The Department publishes this data every week during term time.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
8th Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what arrangements he is making for (a) SATS, (b) GCSE, (c) A-level and (d) BTEC examinations in the 2021-22 academic year.

Primary assessments have a crucial role in supporting pupils to grasp the basics of reading, writing and mathematics and to prepare them for secondary school. The Department is planning for a full programme of primary assessments to take place in the 2021-22 academic year. We will confirm full details for 2021-22 primary assessments in due course.

The Government remains clear that exams are the fairest method to assess pupils. We know that pupils and teachers will be working hard in preparation for GCSE and A level exams in 2022, as well as for their vocational and technical qualification exams and assessments, including BTEC examinations. We will make sure that the interests of pupils are at the centre of our considerations.

It is important that pupils in this cohort are able to get a grade safely and fairly and we will continue to monitor the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak on all pupils to ensure that those due to take exams and assessments in 2022 are supported to move to the next stage of their lives fairly. We will make further announcements in due course.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
8th Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, when he plans to publish the data from the January 2021 school census.

The spring 2021 census date was 21 January and the window for schools to return census data closed on Wednesday 17 February. The data collection is due to close fully following data cleaning and validation in mid-March.

Spring census data is then released annually, mainly via the four national statistics publications listed below. The weblinks refer to the publications January 2020. The release schedule for January 2021 is expected to follow similar timescales.

A provisional publication schedule giving anticipated month of publication can be found in the gov.uk research and statistics publication calendar at: https://www.gov.uk/search/research-and-statistics?content_store_document_type=upcoming_statistics&order=release-date-oldest.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
2nd Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what discussions he has had with relevant stakeholders on funding of the Oak National Academy after the covid-19 outbreak; and if he will make statement.

In order to provide rapid support to schools and families during the COVID-19 outbreak, the Government has funded the Oak National Academy to provide free video lessons and online resources in a broad range of subjects for Reception up to Year 11. Specialist content for pupils with special educational needs and disabilities is also available. Oak National Academy has delivered more than 100 million lessons since April 2020.

The Government also recently announced an immediate support package to help children and young people recover from the effects of the COVID-19 outbreak. This includes funding for secondary schools to deliver face to face, two week summer schools for pupils most in need of support. A range of high quality online resources available for all teachers and pupils, starting from the summer term and throughout summer holidays, will also be provided by Oak National Academy, to help give pupils the confidence they are ready for the next academic year. More information can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/new-education-recovery-package-for-children-and-young-people.

The Department has recently published a prior information notice regarding a potential open procurement to create and host a range of free in-class and catch up curriculum resources to support teachers with their lesson delivery and education recovery. Further information will be available in due course.

As part of the Government’s commitment to develop a longer-term education recovery plan, the Education Recovery Commissioner, Sir Kevan Collins, is engaging extensively with teachers, school and college leaders, educational charities and families to consider the effect the COVID-19 outbreak has had on education and wellbeing, and what further action is needed to address this.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
1st Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how much of the £700 million catch-up funding announced on 22 February 2021 is additional funding; and how much of that funding is being allocated from within his Department's existing resources.

As announced by my right hon. Friend, the Prime Minister, the £300 million funding for tutoring represents additional funding from Her Majesty’s Treasury, including a contribution to support the academic elements of secondary level summer schools.

Elsewhere, the package makes available a further £400 million across the 2021-22 academic year. While over half of this is new funding, the Department has contributed towards the cost of this package through reprioritising funding from within the Department’s existing budgets. This includes funding from unallocated headroom where adjustments to forecasts have enabled us to release additional resources. Where we have identified additional resources, it is right that we have prioritised them to the front line.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
1st Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what proportion of civil servants in his Department have worked in an early years, school, college or university setting prior to joining the Department.

The information requested is not held centrally. The Department does not hold information on the previous employment of its staff.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
1st Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many fines have been issued for non-attendance at schools in England since September 2020.

Information on fines issued for non-attendance at school relating to the 2020/21 academic year will not be available until March 2022.

Where pupils are absent, the Department asks schools and local authorities to work with families to discuss the reasons behind the child’s absence and together agree an action plan so that the right support can be put in place to help them return to full-time attendance.

Attendance fines for parents are available to be used by schools and local authorities to improve attendance, but only as a last resort, and where there is no valid reason for the child’s absence.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
24th Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how he plans to allocate the Government's £200 million funding for face-to-face secondary summer school provision; and if he will publish those allocations for each school by (a) constituency and (b) local authority area.

£200 million will be specifically available to secondary schools to deliver a face to face summer programme. Evidence from the Education Endowment Foundation shows that summer schools can help pupils make up 2 months’ additional progress. We are investing in summer schools as part of the targeted offer to young people who will most benefit.

Schools will be able to target provision based on pupils’ needs although we suggest they may want initially to target incoming Year 7 pupils. This is alongside wider support funded through our Holiday Activities and Food Programme across the country.

The Department will ensure that funding is available for all secondary schools that wish to run a summer school provision, including middle schools and we will apply extra weighting to fund special and alternative provision schools.

The Department will provide details of how the funds will be allocated in due course, ensuring that schools have adequate time to plan ahead for the summer provision.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
24th Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what estimate he has made of the number of pupils who will be taught under the National Tutoring Programme; and if he will publish that data by (a) constituency and (b) local authority.

The National Tutoring Programme (NTP) provides additional, targeted support to disadvantaged pupils by providing schools with access to high quality, subsidised tuition from a selection of approved Tuition Partners.

In the academic year 2020/21, we expect that 250,000 pupils will be provided with tuition from NTP Tuition Partners. We are working to ensure that there is a high level of awareness amongst schools of the support available, particularly in areas with high numbers of disadvantaged pupils. The NTP is led by demand from schools; we do not estimate the number of pupils that will be taught under NTP at constituency and local authority level.

In February 2021, we launched a tendering process to secure a NTP delivery partner to provide a further year of NTP support, which we expect to support approximately 750,000 pupils through the NTP in academic year 2021/22.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
24th Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, if he will publish covid-19 catch up premium funding allocations for each school by (a) constituency and (b) local authority area.

The Department has published funding allocations for the catch-up premium which include a breakdown by local authority. We will provide details of funding arrangements for the recovery premium announced on 24 February in due course.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
24th Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what criteria his Department plans to use to determine each school's allocation of covid-19 catch up premium funding.

Schools’ allocations from the Recovery Premium are calculated based on the numbers of their pupils who are eligible for the pupil premium. This will provide each mainstream school with a total of £145 for each eligible pupil and special, alternative provision, hospital schools and special units within mainstream schools, with £290 for each eligible pupil, across the 2021/22 academic year. We have applied additional weighting to specialist settings, recognising the significantly higher per pupil costs they face.

Recognising the uneven distribution of pupil premium eligible pupils, we have also ensured that no primary school will receive less than £2,000 and no secondary school will receive less than £6,000. The average primary school will receive almost £6,000 and the average secondary school just over £22,000

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
22nd Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many schools have arrangements for mass covid-19 testing in place in (a) England and (b) each (i) constituency and (ii) local authority area.

For England, we have published this information here: https://explore-education-statistics.service.gov.uk/find-statistics/covid-mass-testing-data-in-education.

Please note, secondary school and college schools in scope here include all schools where the highest age in the school/college is at least 12 years old. The primary schools and local authority nurseries in scope include all primary schools/local authority nurseries which were is scope of receiving test kits deliveries[1].

[1] The number of nurseries, schools and colleges in scope are defined by those which were in scope to be registered for ATS testing for secondary schools and colleges and for primary this is schools that were in scope to receive deliveries.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
22nd Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, if he will publish the scientific advice he has received on the proposed opening of schools to all pupils from 8 March 2021.

At every stage since the start of the COVID-19 outbreak, decisions have been informed by the scientific and medical evidence, both on the risks of COVID-19 infection, transmission, and illness, and on the known risks to children and young people not attending school and college balancing public health and education considerations.

On 22 February 2021 the Department published 'Evidence summary: COVID-19 children, young people and education settings', which can be found here: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/963639/DfE_Evidence_summary_COVID-19_-_children__young_people_and_education_settings.pdf.

The Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE) also publish papers and minutes regularly following each SAGE meeting. The list of papers published are available by here: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/scientific-evidence-supporting-the-government-response-to-coronavirus-covid-19.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
22nd Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what recent assessment he has made of the potential merits of requiring the wearing of protective masks in schools by (a) pupils and (b) staff.

The Department continues to work closely with other government departments throughout its response to the COVID-19 outbreak, including Public Health England (PHE) and the Department of Health and Social Care, as well as stakeholders across the sector, to ensure that our policy is based on the latest scientific and medical advice, to continue to develop comprehensive guidance based on the PHE-endorsed ‘system of controls’ and to understand the impact and effectiveness of these measures on staff, pupils and parents.

As new evidence or data emerges, the Government updates its advice accordingly to ensure that all schools and colleges have the correct safety measures in place.

On 22 February 2021, the Department published 'Evidence summary: COVID-19 - children, young people and education settings' which includes a section on face coverings. It can be found at: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/963639/DfE_Evidence_summary_COVID-19_-_children__young_people_and_education_settings.pdf.

We know that the predominant new variant of COVID-19 is more transmissible but the way to control this virus is the same, even with the current new variants. We are recommending additional precautionary measures during this period of high COVID-19 prevalence in the community.

The Department has published updated guidance for schools and colleges which includes a section on face coverings and takes effect from 8 March 2021. It can be found at: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/964351/Schools_coronavirus_operational_guidance.pdf.

As our updated guidance outlines, where pupils in Year 7 and above are educated, we recommend that face coverings should be worn by adults and pupils when moving around the premises outside of classrooms, such as in corridors and communal areas where social distancing cannot easily be maintained.

In addition, we now also recommend that face coverings should be worn in classrooms unless social distancing can be maintained.

In primary schools, face coverings should be worn by staff and adult visitors in situations where social distancing between adults is not possible, for example, when moving around in corridors and communal areas. Children in primary school do not need to wear a face covering.

Some individuals are exempt from wearing face coverings. This applies to those who cannot put on, wear or remove a face covering because of a physical or mental illness or impairment, or disability, or if you are speaking to or providing assistance to someone who relies on lip reading, clear sound or facial expression to communicate. The same exemptions should be applied in schools, and we would expect teachers and other staff to be sensitive to those needs.

These measures will be in place until Easter. We will keep this under review and update guidance at that point.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
22nd Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps he has taken to ensure that all schools have adequate ventilation in place to enable the return of all pupils to schools from 8 March 2021.

At each stage of the Department's response to the COVID-19 outbreak, the Department has listened to the latest medical and scientific advice. The Department has worked closely with other Government departments, including Public Health England (PHE) and the Department of Health and Social Care, as well as stakeholders across the sector, to ensure that policy is based on the latest scientific and medical advice, and to continue to develop comprehensive guidance based on the PHE endorsed ‘system of controls’ and to understand the effectiveness of these measures on staff, pupils and parents.

It is important to ensure that schools are well ventilated and that a comfortable teaching environment is maintained.

Current evidence recommends that the way to control COVID-19 is the same, even with the current new variants. The PHE endorsed ‘system of controls’ which have been in use throughout the COVID-19 outbreak set out in the Department’s published guidance, which includes ventilation, continue to be the right measures to take. These measures create an inherently safer environment for children, young people and staff, where the risk of transmission of infection is substantially reduced. PHE keeps all these controls under review, based on the latest evidence. Schools therefore need to continue to implement these controls to the fullest extent. The guidance can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/actions-for-schools-during-the-coronavirus-outbreak.

Guidance signposts to further advice from the Health and Safety Executive on air conditioning and ventilation during the COVID-19 outbreak. The guidance can be found here: https://www.hse.gov.uk/coronavirus/equipment-and-machinery/air-conditioning-and-ventilation.htm.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
22nd Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of (a) the phased return of all pupils to schools and (b) the operation of rota systems from 8 March 2021.

The Government has been committed to getting all pupils back into schools full time, as soon as the public health picture allows. In doing so, the Department is guided by the scientific and medical experts. Data and evidence are considered regularly including by the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies, the Joint Biosecurity Centre, Public Health England, and the Chief Medical Officers.

On 22 February 2021, my right hon. Friend, the Prime Minister, confirmed that, based on the Government’s assessment of the current data against its four tests for relaxing restrictions, it will be possible for children to return to schools from 8 March 2021. The latest data suggest that infection rates have fallen across all ages, including in children and young people.

Attendance will be mandatory for primary and secondary school pupils from that date. All secondary pupils will be offered testing from 8 March 2021 and those who consent to testing should return to face to face education following their first negative test result. Testing is voluntary but strongly encouraged. Pupils not undergoing testing should attend school in line with the phased return arrangements in their school. Head teachers in secondary schools can phase the return of their pupils during the first week as they carry out onsite asymptomatic testing.

Missing face to face education does have severe impacts for children and young people, with clear evidence that further time out of education is detrimental for cognitive and academic development, health and wellbeing. The Chief Medical Officer for England has stated that: "The chances of many children being damaged by not going to school are incredibly clear and therefore the balance of risk is very strongly in favour of children going to school - because many more are likely to be harmed by not going than harmed by going, even during this pandemic." That is why the Government avoided restricting attendance for as long as possible and committed to fully opening schools as the national priority.

Schools should not plan for rotas as there is no need to reduce occupancy in schools. Instead, everyone should follow the system of controls set out in our published guidance, which have been strengthened and are the correct techniques for minimising the risk of transmission within schools: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/963541/Schools_coronavirus_operational_guidance.pdf.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
3rd Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, pursuant to the Answer of 29 January 2021 to Question 131337 on Students: Coronavirus, what the terms of reference are for the group monitoring and advising on lost and differential learning due to the covid-19 outbreak; when the members were appointed to that group; if he will publish the membership of that group; how many times that group plans to meet; and when that group plans to report.

The Department recognises that school closures have had a significant impact on the education of young people across the country, and that disruption will have been felt differently by individual students, depending on their circumstances. We will work in collaboration with the wider education sector to develop a long-term plan to make sure children and young people have the chance to make up their education over the course of this Parliament. Sir Kevan Collins, in his role as Education Recovery Commissioner, will work with Government and the Department’s stakeholders on assessing and addressing the impact of differential learning loss for students.

To support students to catch up with their education, the Government has announced a catch-up package worth £1 billion to support children and young people. This includes a ‘Catch up Premium’ worth £650 million and a £350 million National Tutoring Programme for disadvantaged pupils. The Department has also announced that we will provide a further programme of catch up. This will involve a further £300 million for early years, schools and colleges for tutoring and we will work in collaboration with the education sector to develop specific initiatives for summer schools and a COVID Premium to support catch up.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
27th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what additional safety measures will be put in place to ensure the safe opening of schools during the covid-19 outbreak from 8 March 2021.

At each stage of its response to COVID-19, the Government has listened to and acted on the latest medical and scientific advice. The Government has always been clear that it will not hesitate to take swift and decisive action to control the virus and save lives.

The Department has worked closely with Public Health England to publish comprehensive guidance based on a ‘system of controls’ which, when implemented in line with a revised risk assessment, create an inherently safer environment for staff and pupils, where the risk of transmission of the infection is substantially reduced. This provides a framework for schools to put in place proportionate protective measures to manage risk effectively. The full guidance is available here: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/952443/210114_School_national_restrictions_guidance_FINAL_14012021.pdf.

Schools will already be familiar with much of this guidance, which they have been implementing since the start of the autumn term. If schools continue to assess risk and implement the measures set out in the guidance, they will effectively reduce risks in their school and create an inherently safer environment.

The Department will continue to keep our guidance and advice to schools under review to help ensure they remain as safe as possible.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
27th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many pupils were eligible for pupil premium according to the schools census conducted in January 2021.

The January 2021 census will be used to determine pupil premium eligibility for alternative provision and pupil referral units for the financial year 2021-22. Pupil premium eligibility for mainstream and special schools will be based on the October 2020 census.

We will confirm pupil premium allocations in June 2021, once pupil number data from the January 2021 census has been validated.

The department publishes information on pupil premium allocations and the number of pupils eligible annually. The most recent publicly available figures can be found via this link: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/pupil-premium-allocations-and-conditions-of-grant-2020-to-2021.

Vicky Ford
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
26th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether an equalities impact assessment was undertaken before his Department made changes to initial teacher training bursaries for the 2021-22 academic year.

The Department completed an equalities impact assessment before deciding the initial teacher training bursaries and other financial incentives for academic year 2021/22.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
26th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether it is his policy for the Institute of Teaching to obtain degree or qualification awarding powers so that it can offer its own academic awards.

As an Initial Teacher Training (ITT) provider, the institute will be subject to the same requirements that apply to all other ITT providers. The institute will need to secure accreditation to deliver ITT, or partner with an accredited provider, prior to delivery.

The Department expects that the institute will register as a higher education provider with the Office for Students in order to acquire degree awarding powers. This will give the institute the ability to independently award its own Postgraduate Certificates in Education.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
26th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether it is his policy for the Institute of Teaching to apply for registration with the Office for Students to recruit Initial Teacher Training students to that institution.

As an Initial Teacher Training (ITT) provider, the institute will be subject to the same requirements that apply to all other ITT providers. The institute will need to secure accreditation to deliver ITT, or partner with an accredited provider, prior to delivery.

The Department expects that the institute will register as a higher education provider with the Office for Students in order to acquire degree awarding powers. This will give the institute the ability to independently award its own Postgraduate Certificates in Education.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
26th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what funding his Department plans allocate to the Institute of Teaching from the £22 million allocated for teacher quality at the 2020 Spending Review.

The Institute of Teaching is part of a live commercial exercise meaning we cannot provide precise detail on funding at this stage. The Department can confirm that the £22 million included in the Department settlement in the Spending Review will be used to fund a range of priorities to support more teachers to access high quality training and professional development.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
26th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether the creation of the Institute of Teaching is a separate policy from his Department’s Initial teacher training market review.

The Institute of Teaching is separate from the initial teacher training market review, although both share the aim of ensuring the best possible training for teachers.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
26th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what service benefits the Institute of Teaching plans to provide which the Initial teacher training provider network does not.

Learning from the best teacher development organisations in the world, the Institute of Teaching will become England’s flagship provider, showcasing exemplary delivery of the new Early Career Framework (ECF) and our ambitious reforms to initial teacher training (ITT) and National Professional Qualifications (NPQs).

Unlike many existing ITT providers, the Institute will be explicitly tasked with exemplifying how to deliver ITT, the ECF and the suite of NPQs by building, sequencing and delivering a coherent teacher development pathway from trainee through to executive headship. It will use expert understanding of evidence to inform and implement effective delivery approaches, create a world-leading faculty of subject specialists and expert teacher educators, and develop models of school partnership and placement that maximise the impact of school-based training experiences.

The Institute will also play a key role in developing the evidence base on delivery of teacher development. As part of its role in supporting other organisations to understand best practice in teacher development delivery, the Institute will contribute to the development of the teacher development evidence base by conducting primary research. It will also build upon, synthesise and translate existing evidence, and expertly communicate the practical implications to the sector.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
25th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many children in England were receiving free school meals as of 21 January 2021.

The spring 2021 census date is 21 January, and the window for schools to return census data closes on Wednesday 17 February. Information from this current census is therefore not yet available.

The department publishes information annually from the January school census on the number of children eligible for free school meals and the number of children who claim a meal on school census day. The figures form part of the ‘Schools, Pupils and their Characteristics’ release and are usually published in June.

The publication series, including the most recent publicly available figures for January 2020, can be found via this link: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/statistics-school-and-pupil-numbers.

Vicky Ford
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
25th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, when he plans to publish data from the school census for January 2021 on the number of children in England who receive free school meals.

The spring 2021 census date is 21 January, and the window for schools to return census data closes on Wednesday 17 February. Information from this current census is therefore not yet available.

The department publishes information annually from the January school census on the number of children eligible for free school meals and the number of children who claim a meal on school census day. The figures form part of the ‘Schools, Pupils and their Characteristics’ release and are usually published in June.

The publication series, including the most recent publicly available figures for January 2020, can be found via this link: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/statistics-school-and-pupil-numbers.

Vicky Ford
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
21st Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many laptops or other devices supplied to schools and local Authorities by his Department, as part of the Get Help with Technology Programme, were infected with Gamarue malware.

To date, the Department has received reports of the presence of a software virus on 33 laptops out of 800,000 devices provided to schools. The virus was detected as part of the setup of the device by the schools before they were passed to pupils.

The first notification of an issue was on 7 January 2021, with further notifications in the 3 weeks after, up to the 22 January. The windows laptops affected were ones where the school had chosen to set up the device themselves, rather than accept a Department for Education build.

In all known cases, the virus was automatically detected and removed immediately by the included antivirus software during the installation process.

The Department have been in constant contact with suppliers and relevant parties to understand and resolve this issue, and firmly believe this is a contained incident which we are dealing with at pace.

All devices without a Department for Education build are provided by the supplier from the point of manufacture directly to the school. The Department are reliant upon schools accepting the responsibility to install and configure any new devices in line with advice and guidance provided by both the Department and the National Cyber Security Centre.

In no circumstances should there be an occurrence of any child receiving a device that has not been securely and properly set up. Once the device is issued to a pupil, the ongoing risks associated with privacy, safeguarding and security of those devices and its users is entirely based upon how the schools and Local Authorities manage them.

The Department takes online safety and security extremely seriously. Any schools that have concerns about devices should contact the support desk at: https://get-help-with-tech.education.gov.uk.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
21st Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, which company or companies supplied laptops to his Department, as part of the Get Help with Technology Programme, that were infected with Gamarue malware.

To date, the Department has received reports of the presence of a software virus on 33 laptops out of 800,000 devices provided to schools. The virus was detected as part of the setup of the device by the schools before they were passed to pupils.

The first notification of an issue was on 7 January 2021, with further notifications in the 3 weeks after, up to the 22 January. The windows laptops affected were ones where the school had chosen to set up the device themselves, rather than accept a Department for Education build.

In all known cases, the virus was automatically detected and removed immediately by the included antivirus software during the installation process.

The Department have been in constant contact with suppliers and relevant parties to understand and resolve this issue, and firmly believe this is a contained incident which we are dealing with at pace.

All devices without a Department for Education build are provided by the supplier from the point of manufacture directly to the school. The Department are reliant upon schools accepting the responsibility to install and configure any new devices in line with advice and guidance provided by both the Department and the National Cyber Security Centre.

In no circumstances should there be an occurrence of any child receiving a device that has not been securely and properly set up. Once the device is issued to a pupil, the ongoing risks associated with privacy, safeguarding and security of those devices and its users is entirely based upon how the schools and Local Authorities manage them.

The Department takes online safety and security extremely seriously. Any schools that have concerns about devices should contact the support desk at: https://get-help-with-tech.education.gov.uk.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
21st Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what security checks his Department performs on laptops and other devices purchased from third parties before sending those devices to schools and local authorities as part of its Get Help with Technology programme.

To date, the Department has received reports of the presence of a software virus on 33 laptops out of 800,000 devices provided to schools. The virus was detected as part of the setup of the device by the schools before they were passed to pupils.

The first notification of an issue was on 7 January 2021, with further notifications in the 3 weeks after, up to the 22 January. The windows laptops affected were ones where the school had chosen to set up the device themselves, rather than accept a Department for Education build.

In all known cases, the virus was automatically detected and removed immediately by the included antivirus software during the installation process.

The Department have been in constant contact with suppliers and relevant parties to understand and resolve this issue, and firmly believe this is a contained incident which we are dealing with at pace.

All devices without a Department for Education build are provided by the supplier from the point of manufacture directly to the school. The Department are reliant upon schools accepting the responsibility to install and configure any new devices in line with advice and guidance provided by both the Department and the National Cyber Security Centre.

In no circumstances should there be an occurrence of any child receiving a device that has not been securely and properly set up. Once the device is issued to a pupil, the ongoing risks associated with privacy, safeguarding and security of those devices and its users is entirely based upon how the schools and Local Authorities manage them.

The Department takes online safety and security extremely seriously. Any schools that have concerns about devices should contact the support desk at: https://get-help-with-tech.education.gov.uk.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
21st Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, on what date his Department learned that laptops provided to schools by the Government were infected by the gamarue virus, and how they made this discovery.

To date, the Department has received reports of the presence of a software virus on 33 laptops out of 800,000 devices provided to schools. The virus was detected as part of the setup of the device by the schools before they were passed to pupils.

The first notification of an issue was on 7 January 2021, with further notifications in the 3 weeks after, up to the 22 January. The windows laptops affected were ones where the school had chosen to set up the device themselves, rather than accept a Department for Education build.

In all known cases, the virus was automatically detected and removed immediately by the included antivirus software during the installation process.

The Department have been in constant contact with suppliers and relevant parties to understand and resolve this issue, and firmly believe this is a contained incident which we are dealing with at pace.

All devices without a Department for Education build are provided by the supplier from the point of manufacture directly to the school. The Department are reliant upon schools accepting the responsibility to install and configure any new devices in line with advice and guidance provided by both the Department and the National Cyber Security Centre.

In no circumstances should there be an occurrence of any child receiving a device that has not been securely and properly set up. Once the device is issued to a pupil, the ongoing risks associated with privacy, safeguarding and security of those devices and its users is entirely based upon how the schools and Local Authorities manage them.

The Department takes online safety and security extremely seriously. Any schools that have concerns about devices should contact the support desk at: https://get-help-with-tech.education.gov.uk.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
21st Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment he has made of the risks posed by laptops infected with the gamarue virus provided by his Department to the (a) privacy, (b) safeguarding and (c) security of children, young people and their families using those laptops; and what assessment he has made of the potential risk of the transmission of that virus to other devices and households.

To date, the Department has received reports of the presence of a software virus on 33 laptops out of 800,000 devices provided to schools. The virus was detected as part of the setup of the device by the schools before they were passed to pupils.

The first notification of an issue was on 7 January 2021, with further notifications in the 3 weeks after, up to the 22 January. The windows laptops affected were ones where the school had chosen to set up the device themselves, rather than accept a Department for Education build.

In all known cases, the virus was automatically detected and removed immediately by the included antivirus software during the installation process.

The Department have been in constant contact with suppliers and relevant parties to understand and resolve this issue, and firmly believe this is a contained incident which we are dealing with at pace.

All devices without a Department for Education build are provided by the supplier from the point of manufacture directly to the school. The Department are reliant upon schools accepting the responsibility to install and configure any new devices in line with advice and guidance provided by both the Department and the National Cyber Security Centre.

In no circumstances should there be an occurrence of any child receiving a device that has not been securely and properly set up. Once the device is issued to a pupil, the ongoing risks associated with privacy, safeguarding and security of those devices and its users is entirely based upon how the schools and Local Authorities manage them.

The Department takes online safety and security extremely seriously. Any schools that have concerns about devices should contact the support desk at: https://get-help-with-tech.education.gov.uk.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
14th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how data on (a) covid-19 infection rates and (b) staff absence for covid-19 related reasons among staff in education settings is collected by his Department.

The Department receives COVID-19 infection data directly from the National COVID-19 Response Centre within the Department for Health and Social Care on a daily basis. In addition to this, the Department continually monitors a number of public sources of COVID-19 analysis, including, but not limited to, the Office for National Statistics COVID-19 Infection Survey, the Office for National Statistics Schools Infection Survey, the Real-time Assessment of Community Transmission study at Imperial College London, and the weekly national Influenza and COVID-19 Surveillance Reports published by Public Health England.

The Department also maintains a strong working relationship with SAGE, SPI-M, SPI-B and the Children’s Task and Finish Group on children, schools and transmission, which assist in informing the Department’s understanding of the spread of COVID-19 within the community and within key groups of interest.

Ofsted collects and publishesinformation from early years providers on confirmed cases of COVID-19 known to them among staff and children. The latest data was published on Monday 11 January and provides the number of notifications for weeks commencing 14 and 21 December.

The Office for Students collects, on behalf of the Department, information from higher education providers on confirmed cases of COVID-19 known to them among staff and students, as well as headcounts for each. From this information we estimate infection rates in the Higher Education sector.

The Department also asks the majority of schools and colleges to complete the daily education settings online form, wherein they are asked to provide the number of teachers including head teachers, teaching assistants and other staff attending the school onsite as well as the number of those absent due to COVID-19 reasons from onsite and remote teaching/working: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/how-to-complete-the-educational-setting-status-form.

Please note, the online form is not the primary source of data on infection, incidence and COVID-19 cases overall. Rather, this data is used so we can understand capacity issues at both regional and national level.

Further data on overall infection rates, incidence rates and number of COVID-19 cases is owned elsewhere in Government such as by Public Health England, and can be found within the following links:

https://coronavirus.data.gov.uk/?_ga=2.91108568.335840232.1603021384-1347302696.1578321854.

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/national-flu-and-covid-19-surveillance-reports.

https://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/healthandsocialcare/conditionsanddiseases/bulletins/coronaviruscovid19infectionsurveypilot/16october2020.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
14th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what criteria he plans to use to determine when schools will re-open to all pupils as covid-19 restrictions are eased.

We know that receiving face to face education is best for children’s and young people’s mental health and for their educational achievement. Our hope is that with the efforts we are all making to contain COVID-19, children and young people across England will be back in the classroom, spending time with their friends and teachers, and getting back into the rhythms of the school year again soon.

We are keeping plans for the return to school and college under continuous review and will ensure that children and young people return to face-to-face education as soon as it is possible.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
11th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what recent assessment he has made of covid-19 infection rates among staff in schools.

The Department intends to publish school workforce attendance data on 19 January. This data will be included as part of the publication ‘Attendance in education and early years settings during the coronavirus (Covid 19) outbreak’ and will be available here: https://explore-education-statistics.service.gov.uk/find-statistics/attendance-in-education-and-early-years-settings-during-the-coronavirus-covid-19-outbreak.

As set out in the Children’s Task and Finish Group report, the Office for National Statistics COVID-19 Infection Survey data from 2 September to 16 October show no evidence of difference in the rates of teachers/education workers testing positive for COVID-19 compared to key workers and other professions. This is seen even when combining different categories of school staff in the analysis. The report is available here: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/948617/s0998-tfc-update-to-4-november-2020-paper-on-children-schools-transmission.pdf.

The Schools Infection Survey (SIS) confirms that, even with testing, there are low levels of infection in schools. As staff included in the SIS study are in school, these figures will reflect the levels of infection without clear symptoms in teachers only, as symptomatic individuals should not be attending. Whilst the SIS data may suggest a higher rate of infection among secondary school staff included in the survey than in primary schools, the estimates have wide and overlapping confidence intervals, and the difference is not statistically significant. More broadly, caution should be taken when interpreting the SIS findings: the SIS data is unweighted, and so cannot be generalised to the school population as a whole.

Analysis of the Department’s attendance data includes reports of those absent with confirmed COVID-19. The Department’s attendance data indicates that, whilst the percentage of students with confirmed infection is greater in secondary school than primary school students, the percentage of teachers with confirmed infection appears to be similar across primary and secondary schools.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
11th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many 4G wireless routers he (a) has delivered since the start of the covid-19 outbreak and (b) plans to deliver, to schools in England.

The Government is investing over £400 million to support access to remote education and online social care services, including securing 1.3 million laptops and tablets for disadvantaged children and young people.

This includes over 700,000 laptops and tablets that were delivered to schools, trusts and local authorities by 11 January.

The Department has published the latest data on the number of laptops have been delivered as of 11 January by local authority area and academy trusts here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/laptops-tablets-and-4g-wireless-routers-progress-data.

Data on the number of laptops delivered by parliamentary constituency is not available. This is because most laptops have been delivered to academy trusts and local authorities, which are responsible for distributing them to schools, usually in multiple constituencies.

We have delivered over 54,000 4G wireless routers, to schools, academy trusts and local authorities. Data on the local authority and parliamentary constituency to which routers have been delivered is not available.

We have also partnered with the UK’s leading mobile operators to provide free data to help disadvantaged children get online as well as delivering 4G wireless routers for pupils without connection at home. For this we are grateful to EE, O2, Sky Mobile, Smarty, Tesco Mobile, Three, Virgin Mobile, and Vodafone. We continue to invite a range of mobile network providers to support the offer.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
11th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many laptops his Department has delivered to schools in each (a) local authority area and (b) parliamentary constituency in England during the covid-19 outbreak.

The Government is investing over £400 million to support access to remote education and online social care services, including securing 1.3 million laptops and tablets for disadvantaged children and young people.

This includes over 700,000 laptops and tablets that were delivered to schools, trusts and local authorities by 11 January.

The Department has published the latest data on the number of laptops have been delivered as of 11 January by local authority area and academy trusts here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/laptops-tablets-and-4g-wireless-routers-progress-data.

Data on the number of laptops delivered by parliamentary constituency is not available. This is because most laptops have been delivered to academy trusts and local authorities, which are responsible for distributing them to schools, usually in multiple constituencies.

We have delivered over 54,000 4G wireless routers, to schools, academy trusts and local authorities. Data on the local authority and parliamentary constituency to which routers have been delivered is not available.

We have also partnered with the UK’s leading mobile operators to provide free data to help disadvantaged children get online as well as delivering 4G wireless routers for pupils without connection at home. For this we are grateful to EE, O2, Sky Mobile, Smarty, Tesco Mobile, Three, Virgin Mobile, and Vodafone. We continue to invite a range of mobile network providers to support the offer.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
11th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether guidance issued by his Department during the first national covid-19 lockdown in March 2020 allowed children without access to the internet at home to attend school.

Guidance is available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-maintaining-educational-provision/guidance-for-schools-colleges-and-local-authorities-on-maintaining-educational-provision. The overall definition of vulnerable children has been in place since March 2020. It includes children who are assessed as being in need under section 17 of the Children Act 1989, children who have an education, health and care plan, and children who have been identified by the education provider or local authority as otherwise vulnerable for any other reason. Since the outset, guidance has been clear that education providers and local authorities have had full flexibility to allow children to attend school based on their assessment of the child’s needs.

A number of examples of the factors that providers may wish to consider under this third category of vulnerability have been provided throughout the COVID-19 outbreak. This is not an exhaustive or definitive list and the guidance states that these categories are given as examples that providers might wish to factor in when identifying otherwise vulnerable children. Education providers should interpret this in light of the wide range of information they have available to them, such as the needs of the child and their family.

One specific example within this list includes the term “those who may have difficulty engaging with remote education at home (for example due to a lack of devices or quiet space to study)” which was first used in published guidance on 28 August 2020 to include reference to the fact that children having difficult engaging in remote education might be a factor that education providers may wish to consider when identifying children who may be vulnerable.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
6th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, for what reasons schools in the London Borough of Redbridge were not included in the covid-19 contingency framework implementation guidance, published on 30 December 2020.

Redbridge was inadvertently omitted from the list supplied to the Department for Education by the Department of Health and Social Care, but was added as soon as the mistake was identified.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
17th Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, pursuant to the Answer of 8 December to Question 124804 on Students: Coronavirus, what the terms of reference are for the group monitoring and advising on lost and differential learning due to the covid-19 outbreak; when its members were appointed; who those members are; how many times the group plans to meet; and when it plans to report.

In light of the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak, the Government considers that exams cannot be held in a way which is fair. We have therefore announced that GCSE, AS and A level exams will not go ahead this summer as planned.

The Department has confirmed our proposal that, in summer 2021, students taking GCSE, AS and A levels regulated by Ofqual should be awarded grades based on an assessment by their teachers. To provide further clarity to the sector as soon as possible, Ofqual and the Department have launched a two-week consultation on how to fairly ensure all young people are supported to progress to the next stage of their lives.

In December 2020, the Department confirmed the launch of an expert advisory group to consider the differential impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak on pupils and recommend mitigations for these impacts. In light of the decision to cancel exams, the Department is refocusing this group and is working to finalise the terms of reference and membership. We will ensure that membership is representative of the sector and is geographically diverse. Further details on membership and priorities of the group will be provided in due course.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
17th Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, when he plans to provide guidance to schools and colleges on how covid-19 testing will be conducted within their settings; and for what reason that guidance was not issued before the end of school term.

The Department has provided schools and colleges with access to guidance and support for setting up the mass testing of staff, students and pupils. They can access the published guidance through the shared digital platform and request further advice using the DfE helpline. More information on the helpline is available at: https://www.gov.uk/contact-dfe.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
17th Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what discussions he has had with the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care on the priority given to school staff for access to the covid-19 vaccine; and when he plans to give school staff access to the covid-19 vaccine.

The Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation (JCVI) are the independent experts who advise the Government on which vaccine/s the UK should use and provide advice on who should be offered them.

JCVI advises that the first priorities for the COVID-19 vaccination programme should be the prevention of mortality and the maintenance of the health and social care systems. As the risk of mortality from COVID-19 increases with age, prioritisation is primarily based on age.

Regarding the next phase of vaccine rollout, JCVI have asked that the Department of Health and Social Care consider occupational vaccination in collaboration with other Government departments. The Department for Education will input into this cross governmental exercise.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
17th Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what his planned timescale is for the delivery covid-19 tests to schools for the mass testing of pupils at the start of the school term on 4 January 2021.

The Department has provided schools and colleges with access to guidance and support for setting up the mass testing of staff, students and pupils. They can access the published guidance through the shared digital platform and request further advice using the DfE helpline. More information on the helpline is available at: https://www.gov.uk/contact-dfe.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
17th Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, further to his Written Ministerial Statement of 17 December 2020, when (a) schools, (b) colleges, (c) Directors of Public Health and (d) Directors of Children’s Services will receive guidance on operational planning for the roll-out of covid-19 testing to schools and colleges from 4th January 2021.

The Department has provided schools and colleges with access to guidance and support for setting up the mass testing of staff, students and pupils. They can access the published guidance through the shared digital platform and request further advice using the DfE helpline. More information on the helpline is available at: https://www.gov.uk/contact-dfe.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
14th Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what research the Government has (a) commissioned and (b) completed on the correlation between rising covid-19 infection rates and schools; and on what date that research was commissioned.

The Department continues to review data, analysis, and advice from a number of different sources including the Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (SAGE), Public Health England, the Office for National Statistics (ONS), and the Joint Biosecurity Centre to ensure our policies are guided by the most up to date scientific evidence.

The ONS COVID-19 Infection Survey published results between 2 September (the start of the academic year) to 16 October 2020 that showed no evidence of differences in the positivity rate between primary and secondary school teachers, other key workers and other professions.

This evidence was endorsed at SAGE 65. More information is available at: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/935102/sage-65-meeting-covid-19-s0863.pdf and https://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/healthandsocialcare/conditionsanddiseases/bulletins/coronaviruscovid19infectionsurveypilot/6november2020#age-analysis-of-the-number-of-people-in-england-who-had-covid-19.

The SAGE 65 meeting also commissioned the National Statistician to lead a working group to assess data on transmission in children and schools. Work involving the Children’s Task and Finish Group is ongoing to address these issues.

On 26 November the ONS published additional analysis on the number of school workers, key workers and other professions in England who had COVID-19. This also shows no clear evidence from the survey as to whether there is a difference in the level of individuals who would test positive for COVID-19 between teachers and other key workers. More information is available at: https://www.ons.gov.uk/news/statementsandletters/onsstatementaddressingquestionsaroundtheanalysisofthenumberofschoolworkerskeyworkersandotherprofessionsinenglandwhohadcovid19.

The ONS has also commissioned the COVID-19 Schools Infection Survey (SIS), which aims to assess the role of schools in COVID-19 transmission and how transmission within and from school settings can be minimised. More information is available here: https://www.ons.gov.uk/surveys/informationforhouseholdsandindividuals/householdandindividualsurveys/covid19schoolsinfectionsurveysis#about-the-study

Results from the COVID-19 SIS Round 1 were published on 17 December and are available here: https://www.ons.gov.uk/releases/covid19schoolsinfectionsurveyround1englandnovember2020.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
7th Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, with reference to his Department's announcement of 3 December 2020, what the terms of reference are for the expert group set up to look at differential learning and monitor the variation in the impact of the pandemic on students across the country.

The Department recognises the challenges faced by schools, teachers and students, and knows that disruption has been felt differently across the country as well as between schools and colleges in the same area and between students within individual institutions.

In addition to a package of measures announced to ensure that exams are delivered fairly next summer, the Department confirmed the launch of an expert group to consider the differential impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak on students and to recommend mitigations for these impacts. We are working to finalise the terms of reference and membership of the group and additional details will be provided shortly: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-to-support-the-summer-2021-exams.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
3rd Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, if he will list the members of the expert group set up to look at differential learning and monitor the variation in the impact of the pandemic on students across the country.

The Department recognises the challenges faced by schools, teachers, and students, and knows that disruption has been felt differently across the country, between schools and colleges in the same area, and between students within individual institutions. In addition to the package of measures announced to ensure exams are delivered fairly next summer, the Department has also confirmed the launch of an expert group to monitor and advise on lost and differential learning due to the COVID-19 outbreak. The Department is working to finalise the membership of this group and will ensure that membership is representative of the sector, and geographically diverse. The group is expected to make initial recommendations in the early spring and remain in place to monitor the ongoing situation due to the COVID-19 outbreak for the rest of the academic year, reporting regularly.

The package of measures to ensure the fair delivery of exams can be accessed here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-to-support-the-summer-2021-exams.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
3rd Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, when the expert group set up to look at differential learning and monitor the variation in the impact of the pandemic on students across the country was established.

The Department recognises the challenges faced by schools, teachers, and students, and knows that disruption has been felt differently across the country, between schools and colleges in the same area, and between students within individual institutions. In addition to the package of measures announced to ensure exams are delivered fairly next summer, the Department has also confirmed the launch of an expert group to monitor and advise on lost and differential learning due to the COVID-19 outbreak. The Department is working to finalise the membership of this group and will ensure that membership is representative of the sector, and geographically diverse. The group is expected to make initial recommendations in the early spring and remain in place to monitor the ongoing situation due to the COVID-19 outbreak for the rest of the academic year, reporting regularly.

The package of measures to ensure the fair delivery of exams can be accessed here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-to-support-the-summer-2021-exams.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
3rd Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many times the expert group set up to look at differential learning and monitor the variation in the impact of the pandemic on students across the country has met to date.

The Department recognises the challenges faced by schools, teachers, and students, and knows that disruption has been felt differently across the country, between schools and colleges in the same area, and between students within individual institutions. In addition to the package of measures announced to ensure exams are delivered fairly next summer, the Department has also confirmed the launch of an expert group to monitor and advise on lost and differential learning due to the COVID-19 outbreak. The Department is working to finalise the membership of this group and will ensure that membership is representative of the sector, and geographically diverse. The group is expected to make initial recommendations in the early spring and remain in place to monitor the ongoing situation due to the COVID-19 outbreak for the rest of the academic year, reporting regularly.

The package of measures to ensure the fair delivery of exams can be accessed here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-to-support-the-summer-2021-exams.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
3rd Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how often and how many times the expert group set up to look at differential learning and monitor the variation in the impact of the pandemic on students across the country plans to meet.

The Department recognises the challenges faced by schools, teachers, and students, and knows that disruption has been felt differently across the country, between schools and colleges in the same area, and between students within individual institutions. In addition to the package of measures announced to ensure exams are delivered fairly next summer, the Department has also confirmed the launch of an expert group to monitor and advise on lost and differential learning due to the COVID-19 outbreak. The Department is working to finalise the membership of this group and will ensure that membership is representative of the sector, and geographically diverse. The group is expected to make initial recommendations in the early spring and remain in place to monitor the ongoing situation due to the COVID-19 outbreak for the rest of the academic year, reporting regularly.

The package of measures to ensure the fair delivery of exams can be accessed here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-to-support-the-summer-2021-exams.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
3rd Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, when the expert group set up to look at differential learning and monitor the variation in the impact of the pandemic on students across the country will report its findings.

The Department recognises the challenges faced by schools, teachers, and students, and knows that disruption has been felt differently across the country, between schools and colleges in the same area, and between students within individual institutions. In addition to the package of measures announced to ensure exams are delivered fairly next summer, the Department has also confirmed the launch of an expert group to monitor and advise on lost and differential learning due to the COVID-19 outbreak. The Department is working to finalise the membership of this group and will ensure that membership is representative of the sector, and geographically diverse. The group is expected to make initial recommendations in the early spring and remain in place to monitor the ongoing situation due to the COVID-19 outbreak for the rest of the academic year, reporting regularly.

The package of measures to ensure the fair delivery of exams can be accessed here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-to-support-the-summer-2021-exams.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
1st Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether routine Ofsted inspections will resume in January 2021; and if he will make a statement.

For state-funded schools, the Department’s intention is that routine, graded Ofsted inspections will not be reintroduced until the 2021 summer term. During the spring term, inspectors will conduct monitoring inspections in schools most in need of support, such as inadequate schools and schools that require improvement. These supportive visits will focus on matters that are particularly relevant at this time, such as curriculum and teaching (including remote education), and attendance, particularly of vulnerable pupils.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
30th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether the major telecoms companies have zero-rated educational websites other than Hungry Little Minds; and what steps he has taken to persuade those companies to do so.

The major telecoms companies have zero-rated the Hungry Little Minds website. This means that users will not incur data charges when accessing this website, except where the content is hosted on a third party site (e.g. an embedded Youtube video). Zero-rating has been put in place on an operator-by-operator basis. Zero rating is a helpful way to provide families with support to access critical resources where the majority of content is held on one website.

To further support disadvantaged households who rely on a mobile internet connection, the Department is working with mobile network operators to help ensure that disadvantaged and vulnerable families have the data they need to access online educational resources while COVID-19 requires children to learn from home.

In partnership with mobile network operators, the Department is providing a service for schools if they experience disruption to face-to-face education and have identified disadvantaged families who would benefit from free mobile data uplifts to engage in remote education. More providers will be supporting the service before the end of the year and we continue to invite a range of mobile network providers to support the offer.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
30th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, if he will publish the school attendance figures released under the title Attendance in education and early years settings during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak: 23 March to 19 November 2020 for each (a) region and (b) local authority area.

The Department intends to publish regional and local authority level data covering the period from September 2020 on 15 December. This data will be included as part of the publication ‘Attendance in education and early years settings during the coronavirus (Covid 19) outbreak’.

The frequency of the publication ‘Attendance in education and early years settings during the coronavirus (Covid 19) outbreak’ will be reviewed in the new year.

The Department is constantly reviewing the content of its publications. Announcements about future content will be made through the official statistics release page: https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/department-for-education/about/statistics.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
30th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether students who are absent from school because their school is partially closed due to a shortage of staff are recorded as being absent for covid-19 related reasons in his Department’s Attendance in education and early years settings during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak statistical releases.

All pupils, in all year groups, should be in school full time this year. If schools have concerns about accommodating pupils due to staff absence related to COVID-19, they should discuss this with their local regional schools commissioner team.

Whilst pupils will be recorded as absent in circumstances where there are staff shortages, they should not be recorded as absent for COVID-19 related reasons in the ‘Attendance in education and early years settings during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak’ statistical releases.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
18th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what changes he plans to make to A-Level and GCSE exams to ensure that students who have missed learning due to the covid-19 outbreak are not disadvantaged.

The Department believes that examinations and assessments are the best and fairest way of judging students’ performance. My right hon. Friend, the Secretary of State for Education has confirmed that next year’s GCSE, AS and A level examination series will go ahead.

It is a priority for the Department that there is a consistent approach to what is taught and will be assessed across schools. We know schools will be making every effort, including in areas where there is a high prevalence of COVID-19, to deliver high quality teaching, including through remote education. All schools are expected to plan to ensure any pupils educated at home for some of the time are given the support they need to master the curriculum and make good progress.

Changes to assessments in certain subjects, announced by Ofqual over the summer, alongside the later starting date for exams in summer 2021, will give schools and colleges extra time to plan teaching and pupils extra time to study. The Government has committed to a £1 billion catch-up package, including a ‘Catch-Up Premium’ worth a total of £650 million. These changes will give students the best chance of being ready for their exams without undermining the value of the qualifications they receive.

The Department is working with Ofqual and engaging widely with the education sector to identify any risks to examinations at a national, local, and individual student level, and to consider measures needed to address any potential disruption. This could be a student unable to sit examinations due to illness or self-isolation, or schools affected by a local outbreak during the examination season resulting in examination centres not being able to open. More details will be published later in the autumn.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
18th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment he has made of the potential for regional disparities in school attendance to affect exam results in summer 2020.

The Department believes that examinations and assessments are the best and fairest way of judging students’ performance. My right hon. Friend, the Secretary of State for Education has confirmed that next year’s GCSE, AS and A level examination series will go ahead.

It is a priority for the Department that there is a consistent approach to what is taught and will be assessed across schools. We know schools will be making every effort, including in areas where there is a high prevalence of COVID-19, to deliver high quality teaching, including through remote education. All schools are expected to plan to ensure any pupils educated at home for some of the time are given the support they need to master the curriculum and make good progress.

Changes to assessments in certain subjects, announced by Ofqual over the summer, alongside the later starting date for exams in summer 2021, will give schools and colleges extra time to plan teaching and pupils extra time to study. The Government has committed to a £1 billion catch-up package, including a ‘Catch-Up Premium’ worth a total of £650 million. These changes will give students the best chance of being ready for their exams without undermining the value of the qualifications they receive.

The Department is working with Ofqual and engaging widely with the education sector to identify any risks to examinations at a national, local, and individual student level, and to consider measures needed to address any potential disruption. This could be a student unable to sit examinations due to illness or self-isolation, or schools affected by a local outbreak during the examination season resulting in examination centres not being able to open. More details will be published later in the autumn.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
18th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what contingency plans he has discussed with (a) Cabinet colleagues and (b) stakeholders in the education sector in the event that it is not possible for GCSE and A-Level students to take their exams in summer 2021.

The Department believes that examinations and assessments are the best and fairest way of judging students’ performance. My right hon. Friend, the Secretary of State for Education has confirmed that next year’s GCSE, AS and A level examination series will go ahead.

It is a priority for the Department that there is a consistent approach to what is taught and will be assessed across schools. We know schools will be making every effort, including in areas where there is a high prevalence of COVID-19, to deliver high quality teaching, including through remote education. All schools are expected to plan to ensure any pupils educated at home for some of the time are given the support they need to master the curriculum and make good progress.

Changes to assessments in certain subjects, announced by Ofqual over the summer, alongside the later starting date for exams in summer 2021, will give schools and colleges extra time to plan teaching and pupils extra time to study. The Government has committed to a £1 billion catch-up package, including a ‘Catch-Up Premium’ worth a total of £650 million. These changes will give students the best chance of being ready for their exams without undermining the value of the qualifications they receive.

The Department is working with Ofqual and engaging widely with the education sector to identify any risks to examinations at a national, local, and individual student level, and to consider measures needed to address any potential disruption. This could be a student unable to sit examinations due to illness or self-isolation, or schools affected by a local outbreak during the examination season resulting in examination centres not being able to open. More details will be published later in the autumn.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
18th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment his Department has made of the potential effect of the reduction in teachers training bursaries on recruitment to that profession.

The Department reviews the bursaries that we offer for initial teacher training (ITT) before the start of the annual recruitment cycle. In doing this, we take account of a number of factors including historic recruitment, forecast economic conditions, and teacher supply need in each subject. Being able to change bursary amounts gives us the flexibility to respond to the need to attract new teachers and means the Department is spending money where it is needed most.

Final recruitment figures for the 2020/21 academic year are not yet available. Between February and September this year there has been a 32% increase in applications for those looking to enter the classroom compared to the equivalent period last year. Information about this is available here: https://www.ucas.com/data-and-analysis/ucas-teacher-training-statistical-releases.

Teaching remains an attractive proposition for graduates. The focus of the bursaries the Department is offering for the 2021/22 academic year will be on subjects where we expect it will be hardest to attract sufficient applicants. All trainee teachers on tuition fee funded ITT routes can apply for a tuition fee loan so they do not have to pay the fee upfront, and they can also apply for a maintenance loan to support their living costs. Additional funding is also available depending on individual circumstances, such as the Childcare Grant.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
18th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, for what reason his Department has postponed the publication of the Revised information on A level and other results for 16 to 18 year-olds, including data by student characteristics statistical release for 2019-20.

The statistical release ‘A level and other 16 to 18 results: 2019 to 2020 (revised)’ has been cancelled rather than postponed.

In a normal publication cycle, a provisional statistical release is updated in January with revised data. The revision incorporates the results of a process whereby schools and colleges check their data.

In a statement made on 26 March 2020, the Department clarified what the impact would be on school and college accountability in 2019 to 2020 of the earlier announcement that exams in schools and colleges in England in summer 2020 were cancelled and that it will not publish any school or college level educational performance data based on tests, assessments or exam for 2020: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-school-and-college-performance-measures/coronavirus-covid-19-school-and-college-accountability.

The cancellation of the revised statistical release is a consequence of the cancellation of the 16 to 18 school and college checking exercise.

Given the cancellation of the revised statistical release, the content of the provisional statistical release published on 26 November 2020 was broader than usual, including breakdowns of data by student characteristics normally published in January, and regional and local authority geographies. It is available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/a-level-and-other-16-to-18-results-2019-to-2020-provisional.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
18th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether routine Ofsted inspections will resume in January 2021.

It is important for school inspections to start again in the new year but at the right time and in the right way. The Department is carefully considering with Ofsted and the sector how this can be achieved safely and sensitively, with a clear focus on provision for pupils whether in the classroom or remotely. Details of the plans will be made available soon.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
17th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether it is his Department's policy that children provided with laptops for remote learning whilst they are self-isolating must return them upon return to school.

The Department has invested over £195 million to support remote education and access to online social care, this includes delivering over 220,000 laptops and tablets during the summer term for disadvantaged children who would not have otherwise had access to a digital device. The Department is adding to this support by making over 340,000 additional laptops and tablets available this term to support disadvantaged children that might experience disruption to their education. Since September, over 100,000 of these have been delivered to schools. This represents an injection of over half a million laptops and tablets by the end of the year.

Laptops and tablets are owned by the local authority, academy trust or school who can lend unused laptops and tablets to children and young people who need them most. The Department has allocated a number of devices to each school. To arrive at this allocation, we used data on the number of pupils eligible for free school meals in each school. The Department expects that pupils’ device needs will be met to some extent by existing school laptops and tablets. Schools, local authorities and academy trusts can request additional devices if their original allocation from the Department does not meet their needs.

The Department estimated the number of disadvantaged pupils without access to an internet connection using data on pupils eligible for free school meals in each school, taking into consideration estimations by Ofcom and reflecting that some pupils would already have access to a private internet connection. We have invested over £175 million to provide laptops, tablets and 4G wireless routers that come with free data for the academic year.

The Department is also working with the major telecommunications companies to improve internet connectivity for disadvantaged and vulnerable families who rely on a mobile internet connection. We are piloting an approach where mobile network operators are providing temporary access to free additional data, offering families more flexibility to access the resources that they need the most. In the pilot, schools, trusts, and local authorities have identified children who need access to free additional data.

To further support disadvantaged households who rely on a mobile internet connection, the major telecoms companies have zero rated the Hungry Little Minds site. This means that users will not incur data charges when accessing this website, except where the content is hosted on a third party site. Zero rating is being put in place on an operator by operator basis. Zero rating is a helpful way to provide families with support to access critical resources where the majority of content is held on one website.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
17th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what progress he has made in encouraging network providers to zero rate educational websites to allow people who use mobile data to access them without charge.

The Department has invested over £195 million to support remote education and access to online social care, this includes delivering over 220,000 laptops and tablets during the summer term for disadvantaged children who would not have otherwise had access to a digital device. The Department is adding to this support by making over 340,000 additional laptops and tablets available this term to support disadvantaged children that might experience disruption to their education. Since September, over 100,000 of these have been delivered to schools. This represents an injection of over half a million laptops and tablets by the end of the year.

Laptops and tablets are owned by the local authority, academy trust or school who can lend unused laptops and tablets to children and young people who need them most. The Department has allocated a number of devices to each school. To arrive at this allocation, we used data on the number of pupils eligible for free school meals in each school. The Department expects that pupils’ device needs will be met to some extent by existing school laptops and tablets. Schools, local authorities and academy trusts can request additional devices if their original allocation from the Department does not meet their needs.

The Department estimated the number of disadvantaged pupils without access to an internet connection using data on pupils eligible for free school meals in each school, taking into consideration estimations by Ofcom and reflecting that some pupils would already have access to a private internet connection. We have invested over £175 million to provide laptops, tablets and 4G wireless routers that come with free data for the academic year.

The Department is also working with the major telecommunications companies to improve internet connectivity for disadvantaged and vulnerable families who rely on a mobile internet connection. We are piloting an approach where mobile network operators are providing temporary access to free additional data, offering families more flexibility to access the resources that they need the most. In the pilot, schools, trusts, and local authorities have identified children who need access to free additional data.

To further support disadvantaged households who rely on a mobile internet connection, the major telecoms companies have zero rated the Hungry Little Minds site. This means that users will not incur data charges when accessing this website, except where the content is hosted on a third party site. Zero rating is being put in place on an operator by operator basis. Zero rating is a helpful way to provide families with support to access critical resources where the majority of content is held on one website.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
17th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what recent estimate he has made of the number of schoolchildren who lack reliable internet access in England.

The Department has invested over £195 million to support remote education and access to online social care, this includes delivering over 220,000 laptops and tablets during the summer term for disadvantaged children who would not have otherwise had access to a digital device. The Department is adding to this support by making over 340,000 additional laptops and tablets available this term to support disadvantaged children that might experience disruption to their education. Since September, over 100,000 of these have been delivered to schools. This represents an injection of over half a million laptops and tablets by the end of the year.

Laptops and tablets are owned by the local authority, academy trust or school who can lend unused laptops and tablets to children and young people who need them most. The Department has allocated a number of devices to each school. To arrive at this allocation, we used data on the number of pupils eligible for free school meals in each school. The Department expects that pupils’ device needs will be met to some extent by existing school laptops and tablets. Schools, local authorities and academy trusts can request additional devices if their original allocation from the Department does not meet their needs.

The Department estimated the number of disadvantaged pupils without access to an internet connection using data on pupils eligible for free school meals in each school, taking into consideration estimations by Ofcom and reflecting that some pupils would already have access to a private internet connection. We have invested over £175 million to provide laptops, tablets and 4G wireless routers that come with free data for the academic year.

The Department is also working with the major telecommunications companies to improve internet connectivity for disadvantaged and vulnerable families who rely on a mobile internet connection. We are piloting an approach where mobile network operators are providing temporary access to free additional data, offering families more flexibility to access the resources that they need the most. In the pilot, schools, trusts, and local authorities have identified children who need access to free additional data.

To further support disadvantaged households who rely on a mobile internet connection, the major telecoms companies have zero rated the Hungry Little Minds site. This means that users will not incur data charges when accessing this website, except where the content is hosted on a third party site. Zero rating is being put in place on an operator by operator basis. Zero rating is a helpful way to provide families with support to access critical resources where the majority of content is held on one website.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
17th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what recent estimate he has made of the number of schoolchildren who do not have access to a computer in England.

The Department has invested over £195 million to support remote education and access to online social care, this includes delivering over 220,000 laptops and tablets during the summer term for disadvantaged children who would not have otherwise had access to a digital device. The Department is adding to this support by making over 340,000 additional laptops and tablets available this term to support disadvantaged children that might experience disruption to their education. Since September, over 100,000 of these have been delivered to schools. This represents an injection of over half a million laptops and tablets by the end of the year.

Laptops and tablets are owned by the local authority, academy trust or school who can lend unused laptops and tablets to children and young people who need them most. The Department has allocated a number of devices to each school. To arrive at this allocation, we used data on the number of pupils eligible for free school meals in each school. The Department expects that pupils’ device needs will be met to some extent by existing school laptops and tablets. Schools, local authorities and academy trusts can request additional devices if their original allocation from the Department does not meet their needs.

The Department estimated the number of disadvantaged pupils without access to an internet connection using data on pupils eligible for free school meals in each school, taking into consideration estimations by Ofcom and reflecting that some pupils would already have access to a private internet connection. We have invested over £175 million to provide laptops, tablets and 4G wireless routers that come with free data for the academic year.

The Department is also working with the major telecommunications companies to improve internet connectivity for disadvantaged and vulnerable families who rely on a mobile internet connection. We are piloting an approach where mobile network operators are providing temporary access to free additional data, offering families more flexibility to access the resources that they need the most. In the pilot, schools, trusts, and local authorities have identified children who need access to free additional data.

To further support disadvantaged households who rely on a mobile internet connection, the major telecoms companies have zero rated the Hungry Little Minds site. This means that users will not incur data charges when accessing this website, except where the content is hosted on a third party site. Zero rating is being put in place on an operator by operator basis. Zero rating is a helpful way to provide families with support to access critical resources where the majority of content is held on one website.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
17th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what estimate he has made of the average unit price of the laptops purchased under his Department's Get help with technology programme.

The Department has invested over £195 million to support remote education and access to online social care, this includes delivering over 220,000 laptops and tablets during the summer term for disadvantaged children who would not have otherwise had access to a digital device. The Department is adding to this support by making over 340,000 additional laptops and tablets available this term to support disadvantaged children that might experience disruption to their education. Since September, over 100,000 of these have been delivered to schools. This represents an injection of over half a million laptops and tablets by the end of the year.

Laptops and tablets are owned by the local authority, academy trust or school who can lend unused laptops and tablets to children and young people who need them most. The Department has allocated a number of devices to each school. To arrive at this allocation, we used data on the number of pupils eligible for free school meals in each school. The Department expects that pupils’ device needs will be met to some extent by existing school laptops and tablets. Schools, local authorities and academy trusts can request additional devices if their original allocation from the Department does not meet their needs.

The Department estimated the number of disadvantaged pupils without access to an internet connection using data on pupils eligible for free school meals in each school, taking into consideration estimations by Ofcom and reflecting that some pupils would already have access to a private internet connection. We have invested over £175 million to provide laptops, tablets and 4G wireless routers that come with free data for the academic year.

The Department is also working with the major telecommunications companies to improve internet connectivity for disadvantaged and vulnerable families who rely on a mobile internet connection. We are piloting an approach where mobile network operators are providing temporary access to free additional data, offering families more flexibility to access the resources that they need the most. In the pilot, schools, trusts, and local authorities have identified children who need access to free additional data.

To further support disadvantaged households who rely on a mobile internet connection, the major telecoms companies have zero rated the Hungry Little Minds site. This means that users will not incur data charges when accessing this website, except where the content is hosted on a third party site. Zero rating is being put in place on an operator by operator basis. Zero rating is a helpful way to provide families with support to access critical resources where the majority of content is held on one website.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
16th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, if he will publish the number and proportion of pupils not attending school as a result of (a) testing positive for covid-19, (b) being suspected of having contracted the covid-19 virus, (c) self-isolating having had a potential contact with a confirmed case of covid-19 and (d) their school having been closed for reasons relating to the covid-19 outbreak for all state-funded (i) primary, (ii) secondary and (iii) special schools in each (A) region and (B) local authority area in the latest period for which such information is available.

The Department intends to publish regional and local authority level data on 15 December. This data will be included as part of the publication ‘Attendance in education and early years settings during the coronavirus (Covid 19) outbreak’.

The frequency of the publication ‘Attendance in education and early years settings during the coronavirus (Covid 19) outbreak’ will be reviewed in the new year.

The Department is constantly reviewing the content of its publications. Announcements about future content will be made through the official statistics release page: https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/department-for-education/about/statistics.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
16th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what recent information his Department holds on how many schools in England are operating on a rota system whereby not all school years are attending school on each school day.

The Government’s priority is to keep education and childcare settings fully open wherever possible. The Contain framework, and the educational tiers within it, is in place to help manage COVID-19 prevalence locally.

We took a national decision to prioritise education and childcare during the current period of national restrictions and schools continue to remain open for all children and young people as they have since the start of the autumn term. We will therefore not be moving up the tiers in any local area during the period of national lockdown – this means no move to rotas in secondary schools.

Any school management issues which are not about managing COVID-19 transmission should be referred to the relevant Regional Schools Commissioner (RSC)’s office. RSC offices will make every effort to support schools to continue to provide face to face education to pupils in their schools.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
16th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many schools are partially closed as a result of a lack of available teachers or support staff in England.

The Department no longer produces information for schools which are partially closed. The Education Settings Status questionnaire was reviewed on the 12 October to ensure the questions were pertinent to supporting policy whilst considering the increased burden on schools.

The Department collects data on the number of schools that have indicated that they have sent children home due to COVID-19 containment measure. Published information is available at the following link: https://explore-education-statistics.service.gov.uk/find-statistics/attendance-in-education-and-early-years-settings-during-the-coronavirus-covid-19-outbreak.

On 12 November, approximately 29% of state-funded schools reported that they had one or more pupils self-isolating who had been asked to do so due to potential contact with a case of COVID-19 inside the school. A smaller proportion (18 to 20%) had 30 or more pupils self-isolating due to potential contact with a case of coronavirus inside the school.

Schools remain open during the period of the new national restrictions. Where schools implement the system of controls outlined in the published schools guidance, in line with their own workplace risk assessment, Public Health England (PHE) and the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) confirm that these measures create an inherently safer environment for children and staff where the risk of transmission of infection is substantially reduced.

As a result, on current evidence, PHE and DHSC advise that schools are not currently considered high risk settings when compared to other workplace environments.

It is therefore appropriate for teachers and other school staff to attend the workplace. Accordingly, we expect that staff – apart from the clinically extremely vulnerable who should work from home during the period of national restrictions – will attend school.

The Department’s guidance for schools on full opening sets out the options available for schools seeking to manage staffing capacity as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak. In addition to using supply teachers and other temporary or peripatetic teachers, schools can also consider using existing staff more flexibly, including support staff and ITT trainees, or volunteers, as would usually be the case. This guidance is available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/actions-for-schools-during-the-coronavirus-outbreak/guidance-for-full-opening-schools.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
16th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, for what reason overall school attendance was 89 per cent on 5 November 2020 in England when only 4 per cent of students were recorded as absent for covid-19 related reasons.

There are a number of reasons why a pupil might be absent from school and the rate of absence is likely to vary by phase of schools and throughout the year. In the 2018/19 academic year the overall absence rate was 4.7%. This includes authorised and unauthorised absences.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
16th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether the overall funding for the pupil premium has been increased in line with the increase in the number of pupils who are eligible for free school meals in the UK.

We are monitoring the eligibility for free school meals (FSM) and the pupil premium as part of the normal policy making process. We will collect definitive information on the number of pupils who are eligible for FSM at the October school census.

We are committed to levelling up opportunities to make sure everyone has a fair chance to realise their potential and no-one is left behind. The pupil premium furthers this objective by helping schools improve the academic attainment and wider outcomes of pupils from disadvantaged backgrounds.

Since the pupil premium was introduced in 2011, it has provided more than £18 billion of additional funding for schools and has played an important role in contributing to the narrowing of the disadvantaged attainment gaps at age 11 and 16.

Pupil premium allocations for the financial year 2020-21 were published in June, and the first quarterly instalments were paid out in June and July. Announcements on pupil premium funding for the financial year 2021-22 will follow later in the year. Announcements for future years will be made in due course.

Vicky Ford
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
19th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, with reference to his oral statement of 18 March 2020, Official Report, column 1083 on educational settings, what arrangements are in place for students due to undertake vocational assessments during the covid-19 outbreak.

As a result of the unprecedented public health emergency, the government has taken the difficult decision to cancel all exams due to take place in schools and colleges in England this summer. Our priority is to ensure that students can move on as planned to the next stage of their lives. The Department and the qualifications regulator Ofqual are working urgently with awarding bodies and the sector to explore options to ensure that as many students as possible who were expecting to take assessments this summer for vocational and technical qualifications, are not disadvantaged.

For apprentices, their employers, training providers and assessment organisations we are developing guidance to support all parts of the apprenticeship system which is consistent with advice issued by Public Health England. This will include increased flexibility on delivery and completion.

We will provide more information shortly.

Gillian Keegan
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
19th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, with reference to the closure of schools as a result of covid-19, whether the vouchers provided to children that are eligible for free school meals will cover the costs of breakfast.

Schools will be able to provide meals or vouchers for supermarkets or local shops which can be sent directly to families who are either self-isolating at home or whose schools are closed on government advice. The government has confirmed that the total value of vouchers offered to each eligible child per week will exceed the rate it pays to schools for free school meals.

Vicky Ford
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
19th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, if he will define vulnerable children in the context of eligibility to access to schools during the covid-19 closure period.

Vulnerable children include those who have a social worker and those children and young people up to the age of 25 with education, health and care (EHC) plans.

Those who have a social worker include children who have a child protection plan and those who are looked after by the local authority. A child may also be deemed to be vulnerable if they have been assessed as being in need or otherwise meet the definition in section 17 of the Children Act 1989.

Vicky Ford
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
17th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps he is taking to ensure that students in (a) schools, (b) colleges and (c) universities are able to sit exams this summer.

As my right hon. Friend, the Secretary of State for Education, announced to the House on 18 March, the Government has taken the difficult decision to cancel all examinations due to take place in schools and colleges in England this summer, as part of the fight to prevent the spread of coronavirus.

The Department’s priority is to ensure that students can move on as planned to the next stage of their lives, including starting university, college or sixth form courses or apprenticeships, in the autumn. For GCSE, AS and A-level students, we will ensure they are awarded a grade which reflects their work. Our intention is that a calculated grade will be awarded this summer based on the best available evidence, including any non-examination assessment that students have already completed. The qualifications regulator Ofqual is working urgently with examination boards to set out proposals for how this process will work and more information will be provided as soon as possible.

The Department recognises that some students may nevertheless feel disappointed that they have not been able to sit their examinations. If they do not believe the correct process has been followed in their case, they will be able to appeal on that basis. In addition, if they do not feel their calculated grade reflects their performance, they will have the opportunity to sit an examination, as soon as is reasonably possible after the beginning of the new academic year. Students will also have the option to sit their examinations in summer 2021.

There is a very wide range of different vocational and technical qualifications, as well as other academic qualifications, for which students were expecting to sit examinations this summer. These are offered by a large number of awarding organisations and have differing assessment approaches. In many cases, students will already have completed modules or non-examination assessment which could provide evidence to award a grade. The Department is encouraging these organisations to show the maximum possible flexibility and pragmatism to ensure students are not disadvantaged. Ofqual is working urgently with the sector to explore options and will provide more details shortly.

Universities are autonomous institutions with full control over their own assessment processes. The Department and the regulator in England, the Office for Students, are working with registered universities and other higher education institutions to help support them with their decisions, and to find the best way forward for the benefit of all students affected. Universities will contact affected students directly.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
16th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps his department is taking to support international students with (a) accommodation, (b) visas, (c) financial hardship and (c) access to healthcare during the covid-19 outbreak.

Urgent work is underway in the Department for Education and the Office for Students to ensure that we have the appropriate policy response in place to respond to the impact of Covid-19 on the higher education sector and its students, including international students.

Our priority is preventing the spread of Covid-19 while doing everything possible to mitigate the impact on learning and attainment and to protect the sustainability and capacity of the provider base and colleges for the future.

We recognise that this is an unprecedented situation and that it will require an unprecedented response. I have been working closely with representatives of the sector in developing this, including joining representatives from a sector coordination group on 16 March, convened by Universities UK, where we discussed a number of the issues raised by the hon. Member for Ilford North.

With respect to visas specifically, the Home Office published Covid-19 visa guidance for overseas nationals in February, and international students are invited to contact the Home Office’s Coronavirus Immigration Helpline if they have any specific concerns regarding their own visa status. Details are easily accessible on the Home Office’s website, available here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-immigration-guidance-if-youre-unable-to-return-to-china-from-the-uk.

Michelle Donelan
Minister of State (Education)
9th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what estimate he has made of the capital funding requirements for school building improvements at (a) John Bramston Primary School, (b) Little Heath School, (c) Mossford Green Primary School and (d) Ilford County High School in the London Borough of Redbridge.

We have allocated over £7.4 billion in condition funding since 2015 to maintain and improve school buildings. In addition, the Priority School Building Programme is rebuilding or refurbishing school buildings in the worst condition across the country, covering over 500 schools.

Schools and those responsible for school buildings receive condition funding through different routes depending on their size and type. For the financial year 2019-20, Redbridge local authority received a school condition allocation of £5,149,009 to invest in maintaining its schools, including John Bramston Primary School, Little Heath School, Mossford Green Primary School and Illford County High school. In addition, schools receive their own devolved formula capital allocation to invest in small projects to meet their own priorities.

Since 2015, school condition allocations have been informed by consistent condition data on our school estate. A recently completed Condition Data Collection (CDC) will provide an updated high-level assessment of the condition of state funded schools in England and help inform future funding policy and programmes. The CDC programme visited nearly all state-funded schools in England and a report has been shared with each school.

Nick Gibb
Minister of State (Education)
24th Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what discussions he has had with Transport for London on (a) safety and (b) congestion around the A406 junction with Redbridge Roundabout.

The Department speaks regularly with Transport for London on a range of issues. The A406 is part of Transport for London’s Road Network, so they are responsible for management of the road.

Rachel Maclean
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)
12th Oct 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what estimate his Department has made of the number of jobs that would be created through the provision of funding for maritime decarbonisation.

In 2019, the Department published the Clean Maritime Plan, which noted the potential for clean economic growth in the UK as a result of the transition to zero emission shipping.

Alongside the Plan, the Department published an assessment of the potential economic opportunities from low and zero emission shipping. While this does not estimate the number of potential new jobs that could be created through the decarbonisation of the maritime sector, it identifies a large potential global market for the elements of alternative maritime fuel production technologies in which the UK has a particular competitive advantage (for example, upfront design), which could result in economic benefits to the UK of around £360–£510 million per year by the middle of the century.

Maritime UK has published its views that investment in maritime decarbonisation could in future create more than 15 thousand jobs as well as tens of thousands of jobs when considering the wider supply chain[1]. Industry research estimates that in 2017 the UK maritime sector as a whole directly supported more than 220 thousand jobs for UK employees[2].

[1] https://www.maritimeuk.org/spending-review/bid/

[2] https://www.maritimeuk.org/documents/429/Maritime_UK_-_state_of_the_maritime_nation_report_2019_D17mVSQ.pdf

Robert Courts
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)
12th Oct 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what assessment he has made of the potential effect on coastal communities of providing Government funding for maritime decarbonisation.

In 2019, alongside the Clean Maritime Plan, the Department published an assessment which identified that low and zero emissions shipping could result in potential economic benefits to the UK of around £360-£510 million per year by the middle of the century.

Maritime UK has published its views that investment in maritime decarbonisation could in future create jobs in all four nations of the United Kingdom, particularly in coastal communities with a tradition of maritime economic activity, including shipbuilding[1].

Industry research estimates that in 2017 the UK maritime sector as a whole directly supported more than 220 thousand jobs for UK employees[2].

[1] https://www.maritimeuk.org/spending-review/bid/

[2] https://www.maritimeuk.org/documents/429/Maritime_UK_-_state_of_the_maritime_nation_report_2019_D17mVSQ.pdf

Robert Courts
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)
9th Sep 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what assessment he has made of the level of funding that would be required to decarbonise the maritime sector.

The Department has undertaken extensive research to consider the level of investment required for the UK’s domestic maritime sector to achieve net zero by 2050. This research comprises a range of scenarios assessing different policy options, including both costs and benefits, and has been published on Gov.UK at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/clean-maritime-plan-maritime-2050-environment-route-map

For the global shipping industry, research carried out by UMAS, part of UCL, and published in January 2020, suggests that the total cost to achieve global maritime decarbonisation may be in the region of £1.5 trillion, invested over the next thirty years, with the majority of that investment occurring in the production and supply of alternative fuels.

Robert Courts
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)
24th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, whether (a) licensed London taxi drivers and (b) other taxi and private hire drivers are classified as key workers for the purposes of Government guidance during the covid-19 pandemic.

Taxi and private hire drivers should not generally be considered Critical Workers. Those undertaking Home to School transport or the transport of ‘extremely vulnerable’ people may be considered Critical Workers on a case-by-case basis. Critical Workers should also whenever possible make suitable arrangements for their children to stay at home; requests for children to attend school should be discussed with the school.

Rachel Maclean
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Transport)
4th Feb 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, pursuant to the Answer of 4 February 2020 to Question 10420, what the timeframe is for the publication of the Statutory Taxi and Private Hire Vehicle Safeguarding Guidance.
30th Jan 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, when he plans to issue new statutory taxi hire standards.

We will shortly be issuing Statutory Taxi and Private Hire Standards to licensing authorities, on protecting passengers and updated best practice guidance for other matters that will follow later this year.

27th Jan 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, whether his policy on the Task and Finish group report on Taxi and private hire vehicle licensing is the same as the previous Government's as published in its February 2019 response to that report.

The Government’s response to the Task and Finish Group report on taxi and private hire vehicle (PHV) licensing, set out its commitment to taking action where needed, to ensure a safe and well-functioning taxi and PHV sector, meets the needs and expectations of its passengers. This is still the Government’s position. We will shortly be issuing Statutory Taxi and Private Hire Standards.

9th Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what steps she is taking to facilitate the participation of hon. Members in the Kickstart scheme.

Officials have held discussions with the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority and other government departments in relation to Kickstart jobs being made available in government and Parliamentary offices.

We welcome applications from any interested employer, and encourage MPs to speak with their local Job Centre Plus and to read the advice and guidance on the Kickstart gov.uk pages.

Mims Davies
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
9th Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many young people are unemployed in (a) Ilford North constituency and (b) the London Borough of Redbridge as at 9 March 2021.

The information requested is published and available at:

https://www.nomisweb.co.uk/default.asp

Guidance for users can be found at:

https://www.nomisweb.co.uk/home/newuser.asp

Mims Davies
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
9th Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how many young people have participated in the Kickstart scheme in (a) Ilford North constituency and (b) the London Borough of Redbridge.

I refer the Hon. Member to the answer given for PQ157063. We are currently unable to publish data below the regional level.

Mims Davies
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
19th Oct 2020
What discussions she has had with Cabinet colleagues on support for people in the sectors worst affected by the covid-19 outbreak.

I am working with colleagues across Government to ensure those in sectors most vulnerable to COVID-19 can access support to pivot into sectors where jobs are available.

DWP is doubling the number of Work Coaches in Jobcentres and stands ready to provide support to Universal Credit claimants to help them move back into work, including those sectors most vulnerable to COVID-19.

DWP has designed two websites that were launched in April, Jobhelp and Employer Help, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, recognising both a radically different labour market as some sectors contract and others expand. Jobhelp offers job search advice, showcases recruiting sectors and signposts to job vacancies to help people successfully find work.

Mims Davies
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
16th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, for what reason Budget 2020 did not implement the recommendation of the Taylor Review to extend statutory sick pay to include those earning below the lower earnings limit; and if she will make a statement.

Our immediate focus is on ensuring that there is an effective financial safety net for individuals. Many of those earning below £118 per week are already in receipt of benefits. If they are on Universal Credit, their award will rise when their income falls. More generally Universal Credit and New Style Employment and Support Allowance exist to support people when they are unable to work because they are ill or isolating.

We consulted last year on the idea of extending Statutory Sick Pay eligibility to those earning below the Lower Earnings Limit, as part of a wider package of measures intended to support people to remain in work and reduce ill-health related job loss. The rationale was about retaining a link between employer and employee. We received a good response from a range of stakeholders. A response to the consultation will be published later this year.

Justin Tomlinson
Minister of State (Department for Work and Pensions)
22nd Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how many people were waiting more than 62 days for initial treatment for cancer in the London Borough of Redbridge in the most recent period for which that information is available.

Most recent official data for Redbridge Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) shows in January 2021, 19 out of 24 cancer patients were treated within the 85% threshold, against the 62-day general practitioner referral to first treatment for cancer standard. Five patients waited over 62 days for their first cancer treatment at Redbridge CCG.

Jo Churchill
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
18th Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what recent estimate he has made of the weekly cost of testing all education and early years staff and pupils eligible for a covid-19 test.

The request contains commercially sensitive information and cannot be provided.

Helen Whately
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
8th Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what proportion of schools and colleges were provided with covid-19 tests for use on 8 March 2021 in England.

On 8 March, 98.11% of secondary schools and colleges were provided with COVID-19 self -test kits and 98.5% were provided with on-site testing kits.

Helen Whately
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
24th Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what funding he has allocated to the London Borough of Redbridge through the public health grant in each year since 2010.

Unitary and upper tier local authorities have received a public health grant since April 2013, when they assumed responsibility for public health functions and services which had previously been undertaken by the NHS. Data prior to 2013 is therefore unavailable. A table showing the information requested from 2013 is attached. The value of the public health grant in 2013-14 and 2014-15 is not directly comparable to subsequent years, because responsibility and funding for 0-5 year olds’ public health services was transferred from the National Health Service to local government from 1 October 2015.

Jo Churchill
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
24th Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what the current referral to treatment time is for cancer patients in the London Borough of Redbridge.

Latest official data available for Redbridge Clinical Commissioning Group shows in December 2020, 73.0% of patients received their first treatment for cancer following an urgent referral within 62 days.

Jo Churchill
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
14th Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, for what reason the covid-19 mobile testing unit for Oaks Park High School in the Ilford North constituency did not arrive on Sunday 13 December 2020; and whether other schools have experienced delayed or missed visits from mobile testing units.

The mobile testing unit (MTU) for Oaks Park High School was delayed due to human error.

The MTU was available for the full day on the following day. We are not aware of other problems.

Helen Whately
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
14th Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how many schools have been provided with mass testing (a) in total and (b) by constituency; and how many tests have been carried out in schools each day since that service began.

The Government does not publish data in the format requested.

Helen Whately
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
8th Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what the (a) reporting arrangements and (b) publication schedule will be for monitoring the Government's progress towards (i) ending new HIV transmissions in England by 2030, (ii) reducing new HIV transmissions in England by 80 per cent by 2025 and (iii) implementing the recommendations of the independent HIV Commission as part of the Government's National HIV Action Plan.

The Government remains committed to reaching zero new HIV transmissions in England by 2030. Careful consideration will be given to the recommendations made in the independent HIV Commission’s recently published report on reaching the 2030 target, including the recommendations on the interim milestone of an 80% reduction in new HIV transmissions by 2025, as we develop the Sexual and Reproductive Health Strategy and HIV Action Plan, which we plan to publish in 2021.

Jo Churchill
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
22nd Oct 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, pursuant to the Answer of 14 September 2020 to 84711, what progress he has made on tackling the waiting time for phlebotomy appointments in the London Borough of Redbridge.

The National Health Service is taking action locally to improve the waiting times for non-urgent blood tests. In order to create additional capacity, North East London Foundation Trust increasing phlebotomy staffing levels through redeployment, recruitment, staff bank and agency. Staff are being seconded from Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Trust to provide additional capacity and a further eight administrators are now in place to improve the booking service.

In Redbridge, three additional blood testing clinics are already open and will now be extended until at least April 2021. Capacity will be used across the local system to help ensure patients are seen at the sites with the shortest waiting times.

Edward Argar
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
14th Sep 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what data the Mildmay Road covid-19 testing centre in Ilford shares with the London Borough of Redbridge council.

We are providing local authorities with a range of information. This includes testing and positive case data, including identifiable data to Directors of Public Health, from Public Health England (PHE) for residents within the local authority, whether they were tested at this site or otherwise. The Department also provides the council with management information about the site, for example how many tests have been done. Further information from NHS Test and Trace and PHE is provided to local authorities such as daily contact tracing information.

Helen Whately
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
14th Sep 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, for what reasons Mildmay Road covid-19 testing centre in Ilford no longer accepts walk in appointments; and for what reasons the local authority was not informed prior to this change in service.

The Department’s policy is and has been that appointments should be made prior to visiting any test centre. These can be booked through GOV.UK, 119 or the NHS COVID-19 App.

Helen Whately
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
3rd Sep 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps he is taking to reduce waiting times for cancer patients in the London Borough of Redbridge.

Prior to COVID-19, Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals NHS Trust had a recovery plan in place for its cancer performance. The impact of COVID-19 on cancer performance at the Trust has been significant and subsequently the Trust has developed a new Cancer Recovery Plan with a key focus on reducing waiting times.

The Trust has taken a range of actions to ensure improved performance. These include:

- moving a significant amount of its cancer activity to Spire Hartswood during the pandemic to ensure services have continued. It is now working on taking these back;

- increasing endoscopy capacity through re-opening capacity at Queen’s Hospital; and

- utilising diagnostic capacity within the independent sector for Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) and computerized tomography (CT).

Jo Churchill
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
3rd Sep 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment he has made of the adequacy of waiting times and access to phlebotomy services in the London Borough of Redbridge.

The local National Health Service in Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals is moving community blood testing services that (pre-COVID-19) took place in Queen's or King George Hospitals, into some general practitioner surgeries and health centres.

The teams are working hard to ensure the new services are up and running as soon as possible. Establishing these community settings and getting them up and running means that patients who require non-urgent blood tests are currently facing waits but the new services means patients can expect a reduction in waiting times. Additional clinics in Redbridge have also been established.

Edward Argar
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
3rd Sep 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps he is taking to improve access to phlebotomy services in the London Borough of Redbridge.

The local National Health Service in Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals is moving community blood testing services that (pre-COVID-19) took place in Queen's or King George Hospitals, into some general practitioner surgeries and health centres.

The teams are working hard to ensure the new services are up and running as soon as possible. Establishing these community settings and getting them up and running means that patients who require non-urgent blood tests are currently facing waits but the new services means patients can expect a reduction in waiting times. Additional clinics in Redbridge have also been established.

Edward Argar
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
3rd Sep 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps he is taking to improve referral to treatment times in the London Borough of Redbridge.

As a result of COVID-19, there has been a severe impact on referral-to-treatment waiting times for providers across Barking, Havering and Redbridge, as with many across the country. NHS England and NHS Improvement are working closely with providers to put a robust strategy in place and all acute providers are working together closely to maximise capacity across north east London boroughs.

There is a plan in place to significantly reduce the current number of people waiting over the remainder of 2020/21, and this includes a monthly trajectory from the Phase Three response, with a focus on key specialties such as acute pain, trauma and orthopaedic surgery, urology and neurosurgery.

Edward Argar
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
1st Jul 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how many confirmed covid-19 cases were recorded under (a) pillar 1 and (b) pillar 2 testing for the London Borough of Redbridge on each day since records began.

All upper tier local authorities have access to record level (including sex, age, occupation and postcode) test and case data.

We also publish public dashboards at a national, regional and local authority level and the Middle Layer Super Output Area (MSOA) map, which allows individuals to type in a postcode to find their MSOA and see how many cases there are in small areas of around 7,000 people


Data on the 7 day average for the number of people with COVID-19 identified through an NHS lab (Pillar 1) or from commercial swab testing (Pillar 2) back to March 2020 is available as part of the NHS Digital Progression Dashboard to upper tier local authority level and is available at the following link:

https://digital.nhs.uk/dashboards/progression

Helen Whately
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
23rd Jun 2020
What assessment he has made of the availability of covid-19 testing for (a) care home residents and (b) home care recipients (i) under and (ii) over 65 years old.

Testing kits for staff and residents are available for all adult care homes in England through the whole care home portal.

Over 9,000 care homes for older people and those with dementia have had their testing kits and we are currently getting testing kits out to residential homes for adults under 65.

Home care workers - and those who receive care at home - with symptoms of coronavirus can book tests via the National Health Service portal or 119.

Helen Whately
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
9th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how much funding he has allocated to research on (a) childhood cancers and (b) diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma.

Research is crucial in the fight against cancer. The Department invests £1 billion per year in health research through the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR). The NIHR’s cancer research expenditure has risen from £101 million in 2010/11 to £132 million in 2018/19, the largest investment in a disease area.

In May 2018 the Government announced £40 million over five years for brain tumour research as part of the Tessa Jowell Brain Cancer Mission. This includes funding for childhood cancers research and diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma.

Additionally, for the period 2014/15 – 2018/19, the NIHR have undertaken 35 projects into childhood cancer totalling approximately £13.3million.

As with other Government funders of health research, the NIHR does not generally allocate funding for specific disease areas. The level of research spend in a particular area, such as childhood cancers and diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma, is driven by factors including scientific potential and the number and scale of successful funding applications.

Helen Whately
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
9th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of ring-fencing funding for childhood cancer research.

Research is crucial in the fight against cancer. The Department invests £1 billion per year in health research through the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR). The NIHR’s cancer research expenditure has risen from £101 million in 2010/11 to £132 million in 2018/19, the largest investment in a disease area.

In May 2018 the Government announced £40 million over five years for brain tumour research as part of the Tessa Jowell Brain Cancer Mission. This includes funding for childhood cancers research and diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma.

Additionally, for the period 2014/15 – 2018/19, the NIHR have undertaken 35 projects into childhood cancer totalling approximately £13.3million.

As with other Government funders of health research, the NIHR does not generally allocate funding for specific disease areas. The level of research spend in a particular area, such as childhood cancers and diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma, is driven by factors including scientific potential and the number and scale of successful funding applications.

Helen Whately
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
9th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what progress the Government is making in tackling (a) childhood cancers and (b) diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma; and if he will make a statement.

A revised Service Specification for Children’s Cancer Services is due to be published, by NHS England and NHS Improvement, in April 2020. This follows an extensive review of children’s cancer services with the support of the Children’s and Young People’s Cancer Clinical Reference Group.

NHS England and NHS Improvement are aware that there are a number of clinical trials underway for diffuse midline glioma. Should a relevant evidence base arise from these clinical trials, a Provisional Policy Proposal would need to be submitted for consideration, in line with our published methods.

Jo Churchill
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care)
24th Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, what representations he has made to the Government of Israel on (a) the case of Issa Amro and (b) upholding Palestinians' right to undertake take non-violent protest in support of Palestinian human rights and statehood.

Officials from our Consulate-General in Jerusalem attended Mr Amro's court hearing on 6 January. We continue to urge the Israeli Government to fully respect the fundamental rights and freedoms of human rights defenders and organisations. We have also raised concerns with the Palestinian Authority about the narrowing of space for civil society to operate in the West Bank.

James Cleverly
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
24th Nov 2020
What discussions he has had with his Sri Lankan counterpart on human rights in that country.

The UK Government takes the human rights situation in Sri Lanka very seriously.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon, Minister for South Asia, raised a number of human rights concerns, including harassment of civil society and militarisation of civilian functions, when he spoke with Sri Lankan Foreign Minister Gunawardena on 5 November.

We have urged Sri Lanka to address concerns in our statements to the UN Human Rights Council in February, June and September.

The UK will continue to highlight our concerns to the Government of Sri Lanka, and we will support human rights through our programme work including resettlement of victims of conflict and improving responses to sexual and gender based violence.

Nigel Adams
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
24th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, what steps the UK's Mission in Geneva is taking to prepare for a new UN Human Rights Council resolution on Sri Lanka.

The UK has long supported efforts to promote peace and reconciliation in Sri Lanka, including in our role as penholder on Sri Lanka at the UN Human Rights Council (UNHRC) in Geneva. We firmly believe that UNHRC resolution 30/1, and its successor resolutions 34/1 and 40/1, remain the best framework for establishing truth and achieving justice and lasting reconciliation following the conflict in Sri Lanka. The UK's Mission in Geneva made this clear in statements delivered on behalf of the Core Group on Sri Lanka at the UNHRC in February, June and September.

The Minister of State for South Asia and Minister for Human Rights, Lord (Tariq) Ahmad of Wimbledon, has also raised these concerns on several occasions with the Sri Lankan High Commissioner and Sri Lankan Foreign Minister Dinesh Gunawardena, most recently during calls on 4 and 5 November respectively. We will continue to engage with the Government of Sri Lanka to underline the importance we attach to this issue. Ahead of the March 2021 session of the UNHRC, we will also continue to work with our international partners and with the HRC on how best to take forward this longstanding priority for the UK.

Nigel Adams
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
23rd Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what steps his Department is taking to (a) provide advice to and (b) repatriate UK citizens from Ecuador as a result of the covid-19 pandemic.

Following the change to date for answer of this PQ, I submitted a response by email on 26 March, with the following response. The Table Office have agreed this approach.

Our Embassy in Quito is regularly updating their travel advice, and publishing information on flights on their social media channels to ensure UK citizens are aware of all options. The Embassy have also set up a register for those wishing to return to the UK, which has been shared through email, and amplified via social media. Information includes a video from our Ambassador, requesting telephone numbers to enable the Embassy to contact British nationals swiftly when flight opportunities arise. Details are being passed on to airlines to enable further commercial flights next week.

Wendy Morton
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
25th Feb 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what recent representations he has made to his Sri Lankan counterpart on that country's decision to withdraw from its commitments under the UN Human Rights Council resolution 30/1 and 34/1; and if he will make a statement.

Lord Ahmad of Wimbledon, Minister for the Commonwealth and South Asia met the Sri Lankan Foreign Minister Dinesh Gunawardena on 25 February in Geneva to express the UK's serious concern about his country's announcement that it no longer supports the UN Human Rights Council resolution on Sri Lanka, and to urge him to reconsider. On 27 February the UK made clear our continued support for the resolution and its principles of reconciliation, accountability and justice for victims of conflict in a statement delivered at the UN Human Rights Council by the Core Group on Sri Lanka.

Nigel Adams
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
22nd Jul 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what plans he has to change the rate of VAT applied to ship repairs and maintenance.

The repair and maintenance of qualifying ships and aircraft already benefit from zero-rating of VAT; further information is contained in VAT notice 744C. There are no plans to change the VAT treatment of ships and aircraft at present.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
22nd Jul 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what plans he has to change the rate of VAT applied to aircraft repair and maintenance.

The repair and maintenance of qualifying ships and aircraft already benefit from zero-rating of VAT; further information is contained in VAT notice 744C. There are no plans to change the VAT treatment of ships and aircraft at present.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
22nd Jul 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what plans he has to change the rate of VAT applied to the renovation or alteration of empty residential premises.

Consumers already benefit from a reduced VAT rate of 5 per cent on residential construction under certain conditions. This includes conversions of buildings from one use to another, and the renovation of properties that have been empty for two years or more prior to the renovation work.

Going further would be very expensive: reducing VAT on all property renovation, repairs and improvements would cost the Exchequer approximately £6 billion per year. Although all taxes are kept under review, the Government has no plans to change the VAT treatment of construction at this time.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
22nd Jul 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what plans he has to change the rate of VAT applied to ground source heat pumps installed in dwellings and buildings used for a residential purpose.

Under current VAT rules, the installation of water and wind turbines is subject to the standard rate of VAT. However, the installation of other energy saving materials (ESMs) remains subject to the reduced rate of VAT when certain conditions are met.

Although there are no plans to extend the scope of the relief already in place, the Government keeps all taxes under review.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
22nd Jul 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what plans he has to change the rate of VAT applied to wood-fuelled boilers installed in dwellings and buildings used for a residential purpose.

Under current VAT rules, the installation of water and wind turbines is subject to the standard rate of VAT. However, the installation of other energy saving materials (ESMs) remains subject to the reduced rate of VAT when certain conditions are met.

Although there are no plans to extend the scope of the relief already in place, the Government keeps all taxes under review.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
22nd Jul 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what plans he has to change the rate of VAT applied to the installation of oil-fired boilers as part of grant-funded energy efficiency schemes in the homes of people in receipt of War Disablement Pension.

Under current VAT rules, the installation of oil-fired boilers as part of grant-funded energy efficiency schemes in the homes of people in receipt of War Disablement Pension is subject to the reduced rate of VAT. The Government has no plans to change this VAT treatment at this time.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
22nd Jul 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what plans he has to change the rate of VAT applied to tampons.

At Spring Budget on 11 March 2020, the Chancellor of the Exchequer announced that a zero rate of VAT will apply to women’s sanitary products from 1 January 2021, at the end of the transition period.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
22nd Jul 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what plans he has to change the rate of VAT applied to renovating a dwelling that has been empty for at least two years.

There are no current plans to change the rate of VAT applied to:

- Magazines

- Renovating a dwelling that has been empty for at least two years

- Smoking cessation products

- Installation of mobility aids for the elderly for use in domestic accommodation

- Supplies of magnetic tape adapted for recording speech for blind people

- Motorcycle helmets that meet safety standards

- Cycle helmets marked CE

- Maps and charts

- Printed music

- Newspapers

- Books

- Food of a kind used for human consumption

- Children’s clothes

- Children’s shoes

- Clothes for babies

- Equipment for blind or partially sighted people

- Incontinence products

- Low Vision aids

- Emptying domestic septic tanks and cesspools

- Water supplied to households.

There are limits to the changes the Government can make to the VAT treatment of these goods under the framework of European law. While the UK is in the transition period, all existing EU VAT rules will continue to apply. Although all taxes are kept under review, there are no plans to change these reliefs at this time.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
22nd Jul 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what plans he has to change the rate of VAT applied to smoking cessation products.

There are no current plans to change the rate of VAT applied to:

- Magazines

- Renovating a dwelling that has been empty for at least two years

- Smoking cessation products

- Installation of mobility aids for the elderly for use in domestic accommodation

- Supplies of magnetic tape adapted for recording speech for blind people

- Motorcycle helmets that meet safety standards

- Cycle helmets marked CE

- Maps and charts

- Printed music

- Newspapers

- Books

- Food of a kind used for human consumption

- Children’s clothes

- Children’s shoes

- Clothes for babies

- Equipment for blind or partially sighted people

- Incontinence products

- Low Vision aids

- Emptying domestic septic tanks and cesspools

- Water supplied to households.

There are limits to the changes the Government can make to the VAT treatment of these goods under the framework of European law. While the UK is in the transition period, all existing EU VAT rules will continue to apply. Although all taxes are kept under review, there are no plans to change these reliefs at this time.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
22nd Jul 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what plans he has to change the rate of VAT applied to the installation of mobility aids for the elderly for use in domestic accommodation.

There are no current plans to change the rate of VAT applied to:

- Magazines

- Renovating a dwelling that has been empty for at least two years

- Smoking cessation products

- Installation of mobility aids for the elderly for use in domestic accommodation

- Supplies of magnetic tape adapted for recording speech for blind people

- Motorcycle helmets that meet safety standards

- Cycle helmets marked CE

- Maps and charts

- Printed music

- Newspapers

- Books

- Food of a kind used for human consumption

- Children’s clothes

- Children’s shoes

- Clothes for babies

- Equipment for blind or partially sighted people

- Incontinence products

- Low Vision aids

- Emptying domestic septic tanks and cesspools

- Water supplied to households.

There are limits to the changes the Government can make to the VAT treatment of these goods under the framework of European law. While the UK is in the transition period, all existing EU VAT rules will continue to apply. Although all taxes are kept under review, there are no plans to change these reliefs at this time.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
22nd Jul 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what plans he has to change the rate of VAT applied to supplies of magnetic tape adapted for recording speech for blind people.

There are no current plans to change the rate of VAT applied to:

- Magazines

- Renovating a dwelling that has been empty for at least two years

- Smoking cessation products

- Installation of mobility aids for the elderly for use in domestic accommodation

- Supplies of magnetic tape adapted for recording speech for blind people

- Motorcycle helmets that meet safety standards

- Cycle helmets marked CE

- Maps and charts

- Printed music

- Newspapers

- Books

- Food of a kind used for human consumption

- Children’s clothes

- Children’s shoes

- Clothes for babies

- Equipment for blind or partially sighted people

- Incontinence products

- Low Vision aids

- Emptying domestic septic tanks and cesspools

- Water supplied to households.

There are limits to the changes the Government can make to the VAT treatment of these goods under the framework of European law. While the UK is in the transition period, all existing EU VAT rules will continue to apply. Although all taxes are kept under review, there are no plans to change these reliefs at this time.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
22nd Jul 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what plans he has to change the rate of VAT applied to motorcycle helmets that meet safety standards.

There are no current plans to change the rate of VAT applied to:

- Magazines

- Renovating a dwelling that has been empty for at least two years

- Smoking cessation products

- Installation of mobility aids for the elderly for use in domestic accommodation

- Supplies of magnetic tape adapted for recording speech for blind people

- Motorcycle helmets that meet safety standards

- Cycle helmets marked CE

- Maps and charts

- Printed music

- Newspapers

- Books

- Food of a kind used for human consumption

- Children’s clothes

- Children’s shoes

- Clothes for babies

- Equipment for blind or partially sighted people

- Incontinence products

- Low Vision aids

- Emptying domestic septic tanks and cesspools

- Water supplied to households.

There are limits to the changes the Government can make to the VAT treatment of these goods under the framework of European law. While the UK is in the transition period, all existing EU VAT rules will continue to apply. Although all taxes are kept under review, there are no plans to change these reliefs at this time.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
22nd Jul 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what plans he has to change the rate of VAT applied to cycle helmets marked CE.

There are no current plans to change the rate of VAT applied to:

- Magazines

- Renovating a dwelling that has been empty for at least two years

- Smoking cessation products

- Installation of mobility aids for the elderly for use in domestic accommodation

- Supplies of magnetic tape adapted for recording speech for blind people

- Motorcycle helmets that meet safety standards

- Cycle helmets marked CE

- Maps and charts

- Printed music

- Newspapers

- Books

- Food of a kind used for human consumption

- Children’s clothes

- Children’s shoes

- Clothes for babies

- Equipment for blind or partially sighted people

- Incontinence products

- Low Vision aids

- Emptying domestic septic tanks and cesspools

- Water supplied to households.

There are limits to the changes the Government can make to the VAT treatment of these goods under the framework of European law. While the UK is in the transition period, all existing EU VAT rules will continue to apply. Although all taxes are kept under review, there are no plans to change these reliefs at this time.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
22nd Jul 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what plans he has to change the rate of VAT applied to maps and charts.

There are no current plans to change the rate of VAT applied to:

- Magazines

- Renovating a dwelling that has been empty for at least two years

- Smoking cessation products

- Installation of mobility aids for the elderly for use in domestic accommodation

- Supplies of magnetic tape adapted for recording speech for blind people

- Motorcycle helmets that meet safety standards

- Cycle helmets marked CE

- Maps and charts

- Printed music

- Newspapers

- Books

- Food of a kind used for human consumption

- Children’s clothes

- Children’s shoes

- Clothes for babies

- Equipment for blind or partially sighted people

- Incontinence products

- Low Vision aids

- Emptying domestic septic tanks and cesspools

- Water supplied to households.

There are limits to the changes the Government can make to the VAT treatment of these goods under the framework of European law. While the UK is in the transition period, all existing EU VAT rules will continue to apply. Although all taxes are kept under review, there are no plans to change these reliefs at this time.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
22nd Jul 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what plans he has to change the rate of VAT applied to printed music.

There are no current plans to change the rate of VAT applied to:

- Magazines

- Renovating a dwelling that has been empty for at least two years

- Smoking cessation products

- Installation of mobility aids for the elderly for use in domestic accommodation

- Supplies of magnetic tape adapted for recording speech for blind people

- Motorcycle helmets that meet safety standards

- Cycle helmets marked CE

- Maps and charts

- Printed music

- Newspapers

- Books

- Food of a kind used for human consumption

- Children’s clothes

- Children’s shoes

- Clothes for babies

- Equipment for blind or partially sighted people

- Incontinence products

- Low Vision aids

- Emptying domestic septic tanks and cesspools

- Water supplied to households.

There are limits to the changes the Government can make to the VAT treatment of these goods under the framework of European law. While the UK is in the transition period, all existing EU VAT rules will continue to apply. Although all taxes are kept under review, there are no plans to change these reliefs at this time.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
22nd Jul 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what plans he has to change the rate of VAT applied to newspapers.

There are no current plans to change the rate of VAT applied to:

- Magazines

- Renovating a dwelling that has been empty for at least two years

- Smoking cessation products

- Installation of mobility aids for the elderly for use in domestic accommodation

- Supplies of magnetic tape adapted for recording speech for blind people

- Motorcycle helmets that meet safety standards

- Cycle helmets marked CE

- Maps and charts

- Printed music

- Newspapers

- Books

- Food of a kind used for human consumption

- Children’s clothes

- Children’s shoes

- Clothes for babies

- Equipment for blind or partially sighted people

- Incontinence products

- Low Vision aids

- Emptying domestic septic tanks and cesspools

- Water supplied to households.

There are limits to the changes the Government can make to the VAT treatment of these goods under the framework of European law. While the UK is in the transition period, all existing EU VAT rules will continue to apply. Although all taxes are kept under review, there are no plans to change these reliefs at this time.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
22nd Jul 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what plans he has to change the rate of VAT applied to books.

There are no current plans to change the rate of VAT applied to:

- Magazines

- Renovating a dwelling that has been empty for at least two years

- Smoking cessation products

- Installation of mobility aids for the elderly for use in domestic accommodation

- Supplies of magnetic tape adapted for recording speech for blind people

- Motorcycle helmets that meet safety standards

- Cycle helmets marked CE

- Maps and charts

- Printed music

- Newspapers

- Books

- Food of a kind used for human consumption

- Children’s clothes

- Children’s shoes

- Clothes for babies

- Equipment for blind or partially sighted people

- Incontinence products

- Low Vision aids

- Emptying domestic septic tanks and cesspools

- Water supplied to households.

There are limits to the changes the Government can make to the VAT treatment of these goods under the framework of European law. While the UK is in the transition period, all existing EU VAT rules will continue to apply. Although all taxes are kept under review, there are no plans to change these reliefs at this time.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
22nd Jul 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what plans he has to change the rate of VAT applied to magazines.

There are no current plans to change the rate of VAT applied to:

- Magazines

- Renovating a dwelling that has been empty for at least two years

- Smoking cessation products

- Installation of mobility aids for the elderly for use in domestic accommodation

- Supplies of magnetic tape adapted for recording speech for blind people

- Motorcycle helmets that meet safety standards

- Cycle helmets marked CE

- Maps and charts

- Printed music

- Newspapers

- Books

- Food of a kind used for human consumption

- Children’s clothes

- Children’s shoes

- Clothes for babies

- Equipment for blind or partially sighted people

- Incontinence products

- Low Vision aids

- Emptying domestic septic tanks and cesspools

- Water supplied to households.

There are limits to the changes the Government can make to the VAT treatment of these goods under the framework of European law. While the UK is in the transition period, all existing EU VAT rules will continue to apply. Although all taxes are kept under review, there are no plans to change these reliefs at this time.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
22nd Jul 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what plans he has to change the rate of VAT applied to electricity for domestic and residential use or for non-business use by a charity.

Under the current VAT rules, electricity for domestic use is subject to the reduced rate of 5 per cent. Although all taxes are kept under constant review, the Government has no current plans to change the VAT treatment of electricity.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
16th Jul 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, when he plans to publish the next edition of the Climate Change Levy and Carbon Price Floor bulletin.

The ongoing challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic have resulted in significant reductions in data availability impacting the production of Climate Change Levy (CCL) and Carbon Price Floor (CPF) statistics. Because of this, the publication of the Climate Change Levy (CCL) and Carbon Price Floor (CPF) Bulletin, which was scheduled for June 2020, was cancelled.

If sufficient data becomes available to produce the publication ahead of the next planned date of December 2020, the Government will make a further announcement.

Kemi Badenoch
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
16th Jul 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether it is his policy to not raise the rates of (a) income tax, (b) National Insurance and (c) VAT during the 2019 Parliament.

The Government’s priority is to support people and businesses throughout this crisis. As the Chancellor has said, a new national collective effort has begun: to reopen the country and kickstart the economy. As part of this, the Treasury continues to keep all taxes under review, and the Chancellor will update Parliament on tax policy decisions at future budgets.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
16th Jul 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether it is his policy to maintain the triple lock on pensions.

The Government is committed to ensuring that older people are able to live with the dignity and respect they deserve.

Since 2010, the State Pension has been uprated by the highest of average earnings growth, price inflation or 2.5% - an approach known as the Triple Lock. The value of the State Pension is £1,903.20 a year higher than it was in 2010. In total, the Government will spend around £100 billion on the State Pension, and close to £127 billion on overall benefits for pensioners in 2020-21.

The Government provides support for older people, such as Winter Fuel Payments, free eye tests and NHS prescriptions, and free bus passes. The Government also provides Pension Credit for pensioners with low incomes. Pension Credit is an income-related benefit paid out of general taxation and targets help at the poorest pensioners who, for whatever reason, have been unable to save for their retirement.

With regards to the future of the Triple Lock, as with all aspects of Government policy, any decisions on future changes will be taken as part of an annual Budget process in the context of the wider public finances.

Steve Barclay
Chief Secretary to the Treasury
15th Jul 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what discussions he has had with representatives of the gambling industry on tackling money laundering in that industry; and if he will make a statement.

The UK’s anti-money laundering (AML) and counter-terrorist financing (CTF) supervisory regime is comprehensive, seeking to regulate and supervise those firms most at risk from money laundering and terrorist financing. In December 2018, the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), the global standard-setter for AML/CTF, found that the UK had one of the toughest systems for combatting money laundering and terrorist financing of any country it has assessed to date.

The Gambling Commission is the supervisory authority for casinos under the Money Laundering Regulations (MLRs). The FATF Mutual Evaluation Report found that the Gambling Commission had a good understanding of the money laundering and terrorist financing risks in the gambling sector and applied a risk-based approach to supervision.

The Gambling Commission supervises the casino sector and regulates the gambling industry as a whole. It conducts a yearly money laundering and terrorist financing risk assessment based on emerging and inherent risks in the gambling industry. This evaluation informs its supervisory and regulatory activity ensuring it is targeted, relevant and proportionate. In the reporting period of 6 April 2018 - 5 April 2019, the Gambling Commission issued financial penalties worth £17 million in total against its supervised population for cases that included AML/CTF failings.

In his time as Chancellor of the Exchequer, the Chancellor has not had personal discussions with the Home Secretary, the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport or representatives of the gambling industry on money laundering, though there are regular official level engagements focussed on identifying these risks and demonstrating evidence of continued improvements in their effectiveness, as there are with all AML supervisors.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
15th Jul 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what discussions he has had with the (a) Home Secretary and (b) Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport on tackling money laundering in the gambling industry; and if he will make a statement.

The UK’s anti-money laundering (AML) and counter-terrorist financing (CTF) supervisory regime is comprehensive, seeking to regulate and supervise those firms most at risk from money laundering and terrorist financing. In December 2018, the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), the global standard-setter for AML/CTF, found that the UK had one of the toughest systems for combatting money laundering and terrorist financing of any country it has assessed to date.

The Gambling Commission is the supervisory authority for casinos under the Money Laundering Regulations (MLRs). The FATF Mutual Evaluation Report found that the Gambling Commission had a good understanding of the money laundering and terrorist financing risks in the gambling sector and applied a risk-based approach to supervision.

The Gambling Commission supervises the casino sector and regulates the gambling industry as a whole. It conducts a yearly money laundering and terrorist financing risk assessment based on emerging and inherent risks in the gambling industry. This evaluation informs its supervisory and regulatory activity ensuring it is targeted, relevant and proportionate. In the reporting period of 6 April 2018 - 5 April 2019, the Gambling Commission issued financial penalties worth £17 million in total against its supervised population for cases that included AML/CTF failings.

In his time as Chancellor of the Exchequer, the Chancellor has not had personal discussions with the Home Secretary, the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport or representatives of the gambling industry on money laundering, though there are regular official level engagements focussed on identifying these risks and demonstrating evidence of continued improvements in their effectiveness, as there are with all AML supervisors.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
15th Jul 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what discussions he has had with the Home Secretary and the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport on effective data sharing between gambling operators to tackle money laundering in the gambling industry; and if he will make a statement.

The UK’s anti-money laundering (AML) and counter-terrorist financing (CTF) supervisory regime is comprehensive, seeking to regulate and supervise those firms most at risk from money laundering and terrorist financing. In December 2018, the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), the global standard-setter for AML/CTF, found that the UK had one of the toughest systems for combatting money laundering and terrorist financing of any country it has assessed to date.

The Gambling Commission is the supervisory authority for casinos under the Money Laundering Regulations (MLRs). The FATF Mutual Evaluation Report found that the Gambling Commission had a good understanding of the money laundering and terrorist financing risks in the gambling sector and applied a risk-based approach to supervision.

The Gambling Commission supervises the casino sector and regulates the gambling industry as a whole. It conducts a yearly money laundering and terrorist financing risk assessment based on emerging and inherent risks in the gambling industry. This evaluation informs its supervisory and regulatory activity ensuring it is targeted, relevant and proportionate. In the reporting period of 6 April 2018 - 5 April 2019, the Gambling Commission issued financial penalties worth £17 million in total against its supervised population for cases that included AML/CTF failings.

In his time as Chancellor of the Exchequer, the Chancellor has not had personal discussions with the Home Secretary, the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport or representatives of the gambling industry on money laundering, though there are regular official level engagements focussed on identifying these risks and demonstrating evidence of continued improvements in their effectiveness, as there are with all AML supervisors.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
15th Jul 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, when his Department plans to publish the UK charity tax relief statistics for 2019-2020.

This publication had previously been announced for release in June 2020. As the demand increases for statistics and data to measure the impact of the COVID19 pandemic, HMRC has had to change its release practices, focussing efforts on priority analysis and statistics. In line with guidance from the Office for Statistics Regulation, HMRC announced on 22 May its decision to delay the release of this publication to October 2020. This information is online on GOV.UK at:

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/900739/20200715_HMRC_Announcements.pdf

Kemi Badenoch
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
15th Jul 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the effect of the covid-19 lockdown restrictions on forecast revenue from the soft drinks industry levy.

The Treasury does not publish forecasts of the economy or the public finances. Forecasts of future receipts are produced by the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) on a regular basis as part of their Economic and Fiscal Outlook series.

Although the OBR published a Fiscal Sustainability Report on 14 July, that report contains scenarios, not forecasts, and is not broken down to the level of individual taxes.

The Chancellor will commission the OBR to produce a forecast alongside the next fiscal event in the usual way.

Kemi Badenoch
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
15th Jul 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, when his Department plans to publish statistics on Government revenues from UK oil and gas production.

On 18th May 2020 HMRC confirmed the publication date for Statistics of Government revenues from UK Oil and Gas Production as 23rd July 2020 on the official Government website (https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/schedule-of-updates-for-hmrcs-statistics). A direct link to HMRC’s announcement is provided below:

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/900739/20200715_HMRC_Announcements.pdf

Kemi Badenoch
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
15th Jul 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, when he plans to publish the latest quarterly statistics on duty receipts and clearances for hydrocarbon oils.

HMRC are provisionally scheduled to publish the latest quarterly hydrocarbon oils receipts and clearances statistics at 09:30 22 September 2020. The publication will be updated with provisional statistics for June, July and August 2020 and will be published on the HMRC UK Trade Info website.

Kemi Badenoch
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
14th Jul 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, when he plans to open the Kickstart scheme to (a) employers and (b) young people.

The Kickstart Scheme will be open to funding applications from employers from August 2020, and the Government expects that the first jobs for young people will begin in the autumn.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
14th Jul 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what estimate he has made of the cost to the public purse of the policy at paragraph 2.14 of the July 2020 Plan for Jobs CP 261.

The government will introduce a new payment of £2,000 to employers in England for each new apprentice they hire aged under 25, and a £1,500 payment for each new apprentice they hire aged 25 and over, from 1st August 2020 to 31st January 2021. Table 1 of the Plan for Jobs shows the level of fiscal support available including £1.6 billion for boosting worksearch, skills and apprenticeships. This includes the indicative cost of 100,000 incentive payments for new apprenticeship hires. The final costs will depend on the number of new apprentices hired.

Kemi Badenoch
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
14th Jul 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, how much funding he has allocated to the policy at paragraph 2.48 of the July 2020 Plan for Jobs CP 261.

The government is creating a new Office for Talent based in No.10, with delivery teams across government departments. The Office will focus on attracting, retaining and developing top research and science talent across the UK and internationally. Precise details of implementation, including funding arrangements, will be determined in due course.

Kemi Badenoch
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
13th Jul 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, with reference to paragraph 2.40 of the document entitled, Plan for Jobs, CP 261, what the timeframe is for the 600,000 to be upgraded.

The Plan for Jobs announced that over £2 billion will be provided to support homeowners and landlords to make their homes more energy-efficient in 2020-21. Funding for future years will be considered as part of the Spending Review.

This could support more than 100,000 green jobs, upgrade more than 600,000 homes across the country, and save households hundreds of pounds a year on their energy bills.

Further details on the Green Homes Grant scheme will be announced in the coming weeks before its full launch in the Autumn.

Kemi Badenoch
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
13th Jul 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what estimate he has made of the cost to the public purse of administering the Eat Out to Help Out scheme; and whether those costs will be funded from HM Revenue and Custom's budget.

HM Treasury has committed to provide HMRC with additional funding to deliver their coronavirus-related schemes, including Eat Out to Help Out. HMRC keep the administrative and policy costs of these schemes under regular review and HMRC will receive additional funding from HM Treasury via standard Government processes.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
13th Jul 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, how many six-month work placements will be created within (a) his Department, (b) HMRC and (c) the civil service as part of the kickstart scheme.

The Kickstart Scheme will be open to funding applications from August 2020, and the Government expects the first jobs to begin in the autumn.

The scheme will be open to applications from private, voluntary and public sector employers, including the Civil Service.

More information on the application process will be available in due course.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
4th May 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, how much of the £750 million Government financial support announced for charities in response to the covid-19 outbreak has been paid out; and to how many charities that funding has been allocated.

£360 million will be allocated by the Government directly to charities providing essential services and supporting vulnerable people. Up to £200 million will be allocated to hospices across the next quarter, and £76 million has been allocated for victims of domestic and sexual abuse and vulnerable children. Further allocations will follow shortly. £310 million will be allocated in England through the National Lottery Community Fund, with £60m allocated through the Barnett formula so the devolved administrations are funded to provide similar support in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. The application process will be open to charities in the coming weeks.

Kemi Badenoch
Exchequer Secretary (HM Treasury)
24th Mar 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether agency workers will be eligible to access the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme.

The Government seeks, as far as possible, to protect people’s jobs and incomes. This is an unprecedented jobs retention scheme and the Government has been working hard to set out further details on the scheme. The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme is open to any individual who was on an employer’s PAYE payroll on 19 March 2020. Full details can be found in the guidance available at www.gov.uk/guidance/claim-for-wage-costs-through-the-coronavirus-job-retention-scheme and www.gov.uk/guidance/work-out-80-of-your-employees-wages-to-claim-through-the-coronavirus-job-retention-scheme, which provides answers to these questions.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
24th Mar 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, how the average pay of people on (a) zero-hours and (b) casual contracts will be calculated under the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme.

The Government seeks, as far as possible, to protect people’s jobs and incomes. This is an unprecedented jobs retention scheme and the Government has been working hard to set out further details on the scheme. The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme is open to any individual who was on an employer’s PAYE payroll on 19 March 2020. Full details can be found in the guidance available at www.gov.uk/guidance/claim-for-wage-costs-through-the-coronavirus-job-retention-scheme and www.gov.uk/guidance/work-out-80-of-your-employees-wages-to-claim-through-the-coronavirus-job-retention-scheme, which provides answers to these questions.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
19th Mar 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what discussions he has had with his Danish counterpart on the feasibility of implementing a Danish-style system for income protection for workers in the UK.

The Government is taking an approach that best fits the specific circumstances of the UK. On Friday 20 March, the Chancellor announced the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme to help firms continue to keep people in employment. This is in addition to nearly £7bn of extra funding for welfare, including: a £20 per week increase to the Universal Credit standard allowance and Working Tax Credit basic element; a relaxation of earnings rules for self-employed Universal Credit claimants affected by the economic impacts of Covid-19; and extension of Statutory Sick Pay from day one.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
17th Mar 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, if he will make an assessment of the potential merits of introducing a tax holiday to defer payments from self-employed people ahead of the July deadline.

The Government has announced an unprecedented package of support for businesses and individuals affected by Covid-19, and remains committed to doing whatever it takes to support the economy as necessary.

UK VAT registered businesses, including charities, can defer VAT payments due with their VAT returns between now and the end of June. No UK VAT registered business will have to make a VAT payment alongside their VAT return to HMRC in that period. They will have until the end of the financial year to repay.

The Government will also give all eligible retail, hospitality and leisure businesses in England a 100% business rates holiday for the next 12 months. The Government also extended the support available to individuals and businesses, including a package of government-backed and guaranteed loans, which make available an initial £330 billion of guarantees – equivalent to 15% of GDP.

For Income Tax Self-Assessment, payments due on the 31st of July 2020 will be deferred until the 31st of January 2021.

Under the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, employers (including charities) can put workers on temporary leave and the government will pay them cash grants of 80% of their wages up to a cap of £2,500 a month, providing they keep the worker employed. They will receive the grant from HMRC, covering the cost of wages backdated to 1 March 2020.

Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) will be available for those unable to work because they are self-isolating in line with government advice; this is on top of the Prime Minister’s announcement that SSP will be payable from day 1 instead of day 4 for affected individuals. Support will be available through Universal Credit and Contributory Employment and Support Allowance for those not eligible for SSP.

HMRC have scaled up their Time to Pay offer to all taxpayers, including charities, who are in temporary financial distress as a result of Covid-19 and have outstanding tax liabilities. Taxpayers can contact HMRC’s dedicated Covid-19 helpline to get practical help and advice on 0800 0159 559.

The Chancellor will continue to review and make further announcements as events unfold if required.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
16th Mar 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what financial support he plans to provide to charities and civil society organisations to ensure their (a) effectiveness and (b) solvency during the covid-19 outbreak.

On Tuesday evening, the Chancellor announced £330 billion of guarantees for businesses across the UK and emphasised his commitment to do whatever it takes to see industries through the Covid 19 outbreak.

Many charities and social enterprises will be eligible for the new Business Interruption Loan Scheme for loans of up to £5m, with no interest due for the first six months. While many charities are already eligible for 80% charitable rate relief, they will benefit from the new enhanced retail rate relief at 100%.

Furthermore, a new power in the Covid 19 bill will ensure the Chancellor and HMG as a whole can take whatever further financial actions necessary to support sectors across the economy. The Chancellor has asked cabinet colleagues to urgently convene meetings over the coming days with business leaders and representatives in these affected sectors, in order to identify specific opportunities to support them and their industries.

Steve Barclay
Chief Secretary to the Treasury
9th Mar 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, how many people claimed Entrepreneurs' Relief in each year since 2015, by constituency.

The number of taxpayers claiming Entrepreneurs’ Relief in each constituency is given in the attached table by tax year from 2015-16 to 2017-18. Statistics on Capital Gains Tax for 2018-19 are currently due for publication in August 2020. Values under 30 have been suppressed due to statistical disclosure control.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
2nd Mar 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what estimate he has made of the number of people in Ilford North constituency who claimed entrepreneurs relief in each year since 2015.

The number of taxpayers claiming Entrepreneurs’ Relief in the Ilford North constituency are given in the table below by tax year from 2015-2016 to 2017-18.

Year

Number of taxpayers

2015-16

64

2016-17

35

2017-18

55

Statistics on Capital Gains Tax for 2018-19 are currently due for publication in August.

Jesse Norman
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
24th Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how much funding has been provided to support the London Fire Brigade in the London Borough of Redbridge in each year since 2010.

The Home Office does not hold this information. The amount of funding allocated to London Fire Brigade is a matter for the Mayor.

Kit Malthouse
Minister of State (Home Office)
24th Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many (a) police officers and (b) police staff serve in the London Borough of Redbridge in February 2021 compared to May 2010.

The Home Office collects and publishes data on the size of the police workforce in England and Wales on a biannual basis in the ‘Police workforce, England and Wales’ statistical bulletin. However, data are collected at Police Force Area (PFA) level only, and information on officer and staff numbers in specific London Boroughs are not held centrally.

The latest in this statistical series covers the situation in both full time-equivalent (FTE) and headcount terms as at 30 September 2020 and can be found here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/police-workforce-england-and-wales-30-september-2020

While the ‘Police workforce, England and Wales’ statistical bulletin remains the key measure of the size of the police workforce, as part of the Police Officer Uplift Programme, the Home Office also publishes a quarterly update on the number of officers (headcount terms only) in England and Wales. Data are available here:

https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/police-officer-uplift-statistics

Kit Malthouse
Minister of State (Home Office)
7th Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, with reference to the judgement of 21 October 2020 of the Proscribed Organisations Appeal Commission in the case of Arumugam and Others v Secretary of State for the Home Department, what plans she has to remove the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam from the list of organisations proscribed under the Terrorism Act 2011.

The Government was disappointed with the Proscribed Organisations Appeal Commission’s (the Commission) decision to allow the appeal in the matter of the ongoing proscription of the Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE). The LTTE remains proscribed at this time and we await a further decision from the Commission on the action that the Government must take in response to the judgment.

The appeal was allowed on a procedural point. The Commission has acknowledged there was material available to support the then Home Secretary’s conclusion that the LTTE is concerned in terrorism. The Government has made submissions to the Commission that the decision on whether or not to maintain proscription should be retaken.

James Brokenshire
Minister of State (Home Office)
8th Jun 2020
What assessment she has made of the adequacy of Government funding allocated to the recruitment of 6,000 police officers by March 2021.

This Government is delivering on the people’s priorities by giving policing the biggest funding increase in a decade.

In total we’re increasing the funding available to the policing system by over £1bn this year.

In order to help recruit we are giving PCCs an additional £700 million this year to help deliver the recruitment of 6,000 additional officers by the end of March 2021; we have already recruited 3000 new officers.

We are giving the police the resources they need to fight crime and keep the public safe.

Kit Malthouse
Minister of State (Home Office)
5th Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what steps he will take to support the London Borough of Redbridge in tackling rough sleeping beyond April 2021.

The Government has made clear that no one should be without a roof over their head, which is why we have committed to end rough sleeping. In total, we are spending over £700 million in 2020/21 on homelessness and rough sleeping.

We are also putting in place an unprecedented level of support to tackle homelessness and rough sleeping over 2021/22. This includes £676 million in resource funding, a 60% increase compared to the Spending Review in 2019.

The Government will also commit £87 million of capital funding in 2021/22, primarily to support the delivery of long-term accommodation for rough sleepers as announced at Budget 2020. This means the Government will be spending over £750m to tackle homelessness and rough sleeping next year.

Redbridge has had significant investment as part of this and has been receiving Rough Sleeping Initiative (RSI) funding since the launch of the programme in 2018, including £625,000 for 2020/21. The MHCLG adviser teams are currently working closely with Redbridge to develop interventions for the next RSI bidding round in 2021/22.

Redbridge also received £216,000 in funding through the Protect Programme this winter which has enabled them to support their most vulnerable and longer-term rough sleepers, as well as £140,000 through the Cold Weather Fund. They received £5,257,937 for 2021/22 through the Homelessness Prevention Grant. They were also successful in the last Rough Sleeping Accommodation Programme (RSAP) bidding round and are currently working on mobilising these units.

Eddie Hughes
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Housing, Communities and Local Government)
24th Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what funding he has allocated to support the construction of new homes in the London Borough of Redbridge in each year since 2010.

The Government has agreed a major package of funding for London through the Affordable Homes Programme with the Greater London Authority. Programme spend is not ringfenced by local borough.

London will receive £4.8 billion through the Shared Ownership and Affordable Homes Programme 2016-23, to deliver at least 116,000 affordable housing starts by March 2023.

In addition, the GLA will receive £4 billion under the new Affordable Homes Programme 2021-26 to deliver a further 35,000 new affordable housing starts by March 2026.

Between 2010 and 2020, we have delivered over 508,000 new affordable homes, of which over 360,000 were for rent – London accounted for over one fifth of overall delivery in this period (108,000), with 74,000 for rent.

Christopher Pincher
Minister of State (Housing, Communities and Local Government)
24th Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what funding his Department has allocated to the London Borough of Redbridge to support (a) faith communities and (b) inter-faith work, in each year since 2010.

We have spent over £80 million to support integration and faith since 2010.

Some of our funded programmes, such as Near Neighbours, have delivered projects and events in the London Borough of Redbridge to support local inter faith work.

In addition, the London Borough of Redbridge received £249,527 from the ESOL for Integration Fund in 20/21 to provide community-based English language sessions, clubs and activities to residents with little or no English who will be from diverse faith groups.

However, to supply the information for all our funding streams for the previous ten years would involve a disproportionate cost to my Department.

Most of the funding in the Local Government Finance Settlement (LGFS) is unringfenced, and councils are free to choose to which local priorities to spend it on, including work with faith communities, and other projects to support integration and communities.


This year’s LGFS, including a breakdown of Core Spending Power (CSP) for each local authority, including the London Borough of Redbridge, going back to 2015/16 can be found in the supporting information document here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/core-spending-power-final-local-government-finance-settlement-2021-to-2022

Core Spending Power was introduced in 2015. Comparisons before that date do not apply, because the system of local government finance changed, councils’ responsibilities changed and because grants have been incorporated into the annual Settlement over time.

Luke Hall
Minister of State (Housing, Communities and Local Government)
24th Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, how much funding his Department has allocated to the London Borough of Redbridge in each year since 2010.

We have spent over £80 million to support integration and faith since 2010.

Some of our funded programmes, such as Near Neighbours, have delivered projects and events in the London Borough of Redbridge to support local inter faith work.

In addition, the London Borough of Redbridge received £249,527 from the ESOL for Integration Fund in 20/21 to provide community-based English language sessions, clubs and activities to residents with little or no English who will be from diverse faith groups.

However, to supply the information for all our funding streams for the previous ten years would involve a disproportionate cost to my Department.

Most of the funding in the Local Government Finance Settlement (LGFS) is unringfenced, and councils are free to choose to which local priorities to spend it on, including work with faith communities, and other projects to support integration and communities.


This year’s LGFS, including a breakdown of Core Spending Power (CSP) for each local authority, including the London Borough of Redbridge, going back to 2015/16 can be found in the supporting information document here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/core-spending-power-final-local-government-finance-settlement-2021-to-2022

Core Spending Power was introduced in 2015. Comparisons before that date do not apply, because the system of local government finance changed, councils’ responsibilities changed and because grants have been incorporated into the annual Settlement over time.

Luke Hall
Minister of State (Housing, Communities and Local Government)
28th Apr 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government whether the Government has plans to classify haberdasheries as essential businesses in order to provide supplies to volunteers producing personal protective equipment.

Haberdasheries have been asked to close along with many other retail premises to minimise the risk of the spread of the coronavirus. It is positive to see a public desire to volunteer to help in the response to the virus and it is vital that all frontline staff get the personal protective equipment (PPE) they need.

At all times we have been consistently guided by scientific advice to protect lives. The current advice from SAGE is that relaxing business closures measures too quickly could risk damage to public health, our economy, and the sacrifices we have all made. The government has set up five tests that must be met before the lockdown measures (including the closure of certain retail businesses) can be lifted. These consider NHS capacity, death rates, transmission rates, availability of PPE, and avoidance of a second peak of the virus.

In the meantime, online retail is still open and encouraged and postal and delivery service will continue to run. This could enable the activities of haberdasheries to continue.

Christopher Pincher
Minister of State (Housing, Communities and Local Government)
24th Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, how many cases are awaiting trial at Barkingside Magistrates Court; and what estimate he has made of the current average waiting time for a case to reach the court.

Barkingside Magistrates’ Court is in the North East London Local Justice Area, and all trials for that area are listed at Romford Magistrates’ Court. There are currently 109 motoring cases and 395 non motoring cases awaiting summary trial at Romford Magistrates’ Court, along with 53 Youth case trials.

The average waiting time for a case between charge and first listing at Barkingside Magistrates’ Court is 17 days for bail cases with an anticipated guilty plea, 29 days for bail cases with an anticipated not guilty plea. Where the police do not bail the defendant, the case will be listed before the next sitting of the court.

Chris Philp
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Home Office)
1st Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, how many and what proportion of the staff employed by his Department are apprentices.

The Northern Ireland Office, despite our relatively small size, has had 3 members of staff successfully complete apprenticeship qualifications in recent months. These 3 staff equated to 3% of our London staff, exceeding the public sector target of 2.3%. These staff members completed their apprenticeships at the end of 2020. As a result, we currently have no apprentices; however, we have started recruiting to ensure we can continue to meet this target.

Robin Walker
Minister of State (Northern Ireland Office)
10th Mar 2021
What recent discussions he has had with Scottish exporters on the effect of the UK-EU Trade and Cooperation Agreement on their ability to trade.

This year my Ministerial colleagues and I have had an unprecedented number of meetings with Scottish exporters and their sectoral representative organisations.

On issues like supporting seafood, this Government has held extensive consultations with the industry.

We have been working tirelessly to resolve issues around the new arrangements for getting our world class seafood to customers in Europe.

1st Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, how many and what proportion of the staff employed by his Department are apprentices.

The Office of the Secretary of State for Scotland remains committed to apprenticeships as part of a modern employment route into the Civil Service and across the wider economy.

The Office of the Secretary of State for Scotland does not employ staff directly; all staff that join - including apprentices - do so on an assignment, loan or secondment from other Government bodies.

The Office of the Secretary of State for Scotland, has previously, and continues to recruit Modern Apprentices through Scottish Government and the Ministry of Justice. However, due to the number involved, an estimate of apprentices working at the Department cannot be provided to protect the privacy and identity of those concerned.

Alister Jack
Secretary of State for Scotland
1st Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, how many and what proportion of the staff employed by his Department are apprentices.

As at 1 February, the Office of the Secretary of State for Wales employed one apprentice. This is 2.04% of the total staff employed within the Department. Three current members of staff have completed their apprenticeships at the Wales Office.

David T C Davies
Assistant Whip